Pleasant Valley High School named National Blue Ribbon School

Published: Sep. 21, 2021 at 10:34 AM CDT
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DES MOINES, Iowa (KWQC) - Pleasant Valley High School is one of five Iowa schools recognized by the U.S. Department of Education as National Blue Ribbon Schools.

The award honors schools for overall academic performance or for progress in closing achievement gaps among subgroups of students.

The other schools named as National Blue Ribbon Schools are:

  • Bedford Elementary School, Bedford Community School District.
  • Lewis Central Senior High School, Lewis Central Community School District.
  • Hills Elementary School, Iowa City Community School District.
  • Spencer Middle School, Spencer Community School District.

“I commend Iowa’s Blue Ribbon Schools on their achievements in expanding educational opportunities to meet the needs of all students,” Iowa Department of Education Director Ann Lebo said in a media release. “This prestigious recognition celebrates the incredible work and dedication of Iowa administrators, educators and staff in supporting students and helping prepare them for future success.”

The National Blue Ribbon Schools award affirms the hard work of educators, families and communities in creating safe and welcoming schools where students master challenging and engaging content, according to the release.

Now in its 39th year, the National Blue Ribbon Schools Program has bestowed approximately 10,000 awards to more than 9,000 schools.

The award recognizes schools in one of two performance categories, based on all student scores, subgroup student scores and graduation rates:

  • Exemplary High-Performing Schools are among their state’s highest performing schools as measured by state assessments or nationally normed tests.
  • Exemplary Achievement Gap-Closing Schools are among their state’s highest performing schools in closing achievement gaps between a school’s student groups and all students.

Beth Marsoun, a spokeswoman for the Pleasant Valley School District, said 325 schools nationwide received the award.

She said the high school received the award for being an exemplary high-performing school and said the district is particularly proud of the “social-emotional care we provided students in 20-21,” the new college and career readiness class that every student takes, and reducing the number of students needing to take a required math course in college by half.

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