In November, the U.S. Department of Education will honor approximately 219 public and 50 private schools for overall academic excellence.
Kildeer Countryside Elementary School in Long Grove is among the nation's 2012 National Blue Ribbon Schools selected to receive this distinguished award -- the only Northwest suburban school to be honored this year.
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U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan announced the recognition Sept. 7.
"Schools honored with the National Blue Ribbon Schools Award are committed to accelerating student achievement and preparing students for success in college and careers," he said. "Their work reflects the conviction that every child has promise and that education is the surest pathway to a strong, secure future."
Kildeer School, serving children grades 1-5, earned recognition in the "high-performing" category, as measured by state assessments and nationally normed tests.
Kildeer is the fourth school in Kildeer Countryside Elementary District 96 to earn Blue Ribbon recognition, after Twin Groves Middle School (2007); Woodlawn Middle School (2009); and Ivy Hall School (2008).
Likewise, the Willow Grove Kindergarten and Early Childhood Center has earned program accreditation from the National Association for the Education of Young Children.
Based on the most recent overall Illinois Standards Achievement Test, 98 percent of Kildeer students meet or exceed state standards.
"Many dedicated teachers and staff contribute to make Kildeer School a welcoming and exceptional place for our children to learn," said Principal Jennifer Smith. "We collaborate very purposefully to be sure that each of our students grows academically, socially, and emotionally.
"We also are truly grateful for our strong home-school partnership," she added. "Kildeer families are wholehearted partners in our efforts to help our students thrive."
In an assembly Sept. 10, Smith and teachers shared the news with Kildeer students. Later this fall, the children, faculty and staff will celebrate the Blue Ribbon recognition with a representative from the U.S. Department of Education, the District 96 Board of Education and other distinguished guests.
Located in Lake County, District 96 serves families in portions of the following communities: Buffalo Grove, Long Grove, Kildeer, Hawthorn Woods, Lake Zurich, and Vernon Hills.