Sunnyside Elementary Named 2015 National Blue Ribbon School

First time a school in Sioux City chosen for the honor

Sioux City (September 29, 2015) – U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan announced today that Sunnyside Elementary School is a 2015 National Blue Ribbon School. Duncan recognized 335 schools as National Blue Ribbon Schools for 2015 based on their overall academic excellence or their progress in closing achievement gaps among student subgroups. These schools demonstrate that all students can achieve to high levels.

Sunnyside Elementary School serves students in grades 3-5 and their sister school, Nodland Elementary, serves students in grades transitional kindergarten-2. Sunnyside’s selection marks the first time a school in Sioux City or the immediate area has been selected for the prestigious honor.

The Department of Education will honor 285 public and 50 private schools at a recognition ceremony on November 9-10 in Washington, D.C. In its 33-year history, the National Blue Ribbon Schools Program has bestowed this coveted award on more than 8,000 of America’s schools.

The National Blue Ribbon Schools Program honors public and private elementary, middle, and high schools where students either achieve very high learning standards or are making notable improvements in closing the achievement gap. The award plaque affirms the hard work of students, educators, families, and communities in creating safe and welcoming schools where students master challenging content. The award flag gracing a school’s building is a widely recognized symbol of exemplary teaching and learning.

All schools are recognized 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. Student subgroup performance and high school graduation rates are also at the highest levels.
  • Exemplary Achievement Gap Closing Schools are among their state’s highest performing schools in closing achievement gaps between a school’s subgroups and all students over the past five years. Student subgroup performance and high school graduation rates for each subgroup are at high levels.