News Post

SJA Named Blue Ribbon School for Fifth Time

St. Joseph’s Academy has been named a National Blue Ribbon School for the fifth time. The announcement was made today by U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona. The Academy was previously named a Blue Ribbon School in 1991, 1996, 2002 and 2016. 

According to the U.S. Department of Education, the coveted Blue Ribbon award affirms and validates the hard work of students, educators, families and communities in striving for and attaining exemplary achievement. National Blue Ribbon Schools serve as models of effective school practices for state and district educators and other schools throughout the nation, according to the Department of Education. “The honorees for our 2023 National Blue Ribbon Schools Award have set a national example for what it means to raise the bar in education,” Secretary Cardona said. “The leaders, educators and staff at our National Blue Ribbon Schools continually inspire me with their dedication to fostering academic excellence and building positive school cultures that support students of all backgrounds to thrive academically, socially and emotionally.”

Secretary Cardona said that he takes tremendous pride in the achievements of Blue Ribbon Schools and their commitment to empowering educators, serving students and engaging families. 

SJA Principal Stacia Andricain said that for 155 years, SJA has worked to provide the highest quality Catholic educational experience for its students. “Receiving the National Blue Ribbon for a fifth time solidifies that SJA has remained true to the school’s mission and purpose,” she said. “The faculty and staff of SJA work in collaboration to create an environment in which our students are intellectually challenged and supported and encouraged to achieve their personal best in all areas. This recognition will propel us forward as we continue to educate young women for others through a multitude of opportunities for growth in and out of the classroom and in their relationship with God and each other.”

SJA President Jan Breen said the recognition celebrates SJA as a great American school whose students achieve at the highest levels. “I am humbled by the dedication to excellence from each and every member of our Academy community,” she said. “Being named a National Blue Ribbon School speaks to the dedication and commitment of our students, faculty, staff and administration. We are proud to be recognized as a place of exemplary teaching and learning.” 

The National Blue Ribbon Schools Program honors public and private elementary, middle and high schools in one of two performance categories: Exemplary High Performing Schools and Exemplary Achievement Gap Closing Schools. SJA is recognized as an exemplary high performing school, which means that student achievement in the most recently completed school year places the school in the top 15 percent in the nation in reading (or English language arts) and mathematics as measured by a nationally normed test or in the top 15 percent of its state as measured by a state test. If a non-public school administers both state tests and nationally normed tests, the school must be in the top 15 percent in both.

The NBRS Program is now in its 40th year. SJA representatives will join this year’s recipients at an awards ceremony in mid-November in Washington, D.C.

Students, faculty and staff celebrated the news with a special assembly in the Academy Student Center following Secretary Cardona’s announcement. 

Mindy Brodhead Averitt
Communications Director