Earning blue ribbon recognition long process

Cindy Kleyn-Kennedy

Many will have read the Clovis News Journal article last Thursday about Ranchvale Elementary being recognized as a 2010 National Blue Ribbon School. What an achievement to have received such an honor.

The Blue Ribbon Award has become a way to assess exemplary practices and establish standards of excellence for public and private schools. The process involves leadership, teachers, students, and the community.

The criteria for nomination for the Blue Ribbon Award include: student focus and support; school organization and culture; challenging standards and curriculum; active teaching and learning; professional community; leadership and educational vitality; school, family, and community partnerships; and other indicators of success. Meeting these criteria is not something that happens overnight. It’s a long and involved process of striving towards a goal.

Spearheaded by principal Suzanne Brockmeier, Ranchvale Elementary took the plunge, overcame obstacles, and achieved the Blue Ribbon goal. It bears noting that Ranchvale was one of only three schools in the state of New Mexico, and one of a total of 314 total schools across the nation that received this honor. Ranchvale will receive the official award amidst related celebratory events in Washington, D.C. This is a tremendous accomplishment!

When asked about the challenges, Mrs. Brockmeier shared, “It was a lot of work and required hard teaching that actually involved reaching every child; that’s why I like Mr. Myers’ focus so much, ‘every child, every time.’ We were able to do that through the Blue Ribbon process.”

Congratulations, Ranchvale!

Also, just in case readers are not aware, another of our schools has achieved this distinction. Mesa Elementary was awarded National Blue Ribbon Schools status in 2001, one of only two schools in New Mexico that year to achieve this distinction.

For information on the Blue Ribbon Schools Program, visit the U.S. Department of Education’s website at http://www2.ed.gov/programs/nclbbrs/index.html.