NDA Named Blue Ribbon School of Excellence by U.S. Department of Education

For the third time in the school’s history, Notre Dame Academy has been named a National Blue Ribbon School of Excellence. The announcement was made today by the U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos. “We recognize and honor your important work in preparing students for successful careers and meaningful lives,” said U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos in a video message to the honorees. “As a National Blue Ribbon School, your school demonstrates what is possible when committed educators hold all students and staff to high standards and create vibrant, innovative cultures of teaching and learning.”

Notre Dame Academy previously received the National Blue Ribbon recognition in 1996 and 2012 and is the first high school within the Diocese of Covington to receive this honor three times. Notre Dame Academy is the only high school in Kentucky and one of only 50 private schools in the country to receive this national recognition for 2019. 

“This is an exciting day for the Notre Dame Academy community,” said NDA Principal Jack VonHandorf. “It is an honor it is to be recognized for the excellence we strive for each day in the classroom and for the exemplary educational experience students receive at Notre Dame Academy,” VonHandorf added. “This is a testament to the ongoing dedication of our faculty and students and their commitment to excellence in education at Notre Dame Academy.”

Now in its 37th year, the National Blue Ribbon Schools Program requires schools to meet either of two assessment criteria. It recognizes “Exemplary Achievement Gap Closing Schools” and it recognizes “Exemplary High Performing Schools” that score in the top 15 percent on state and national assessments. Notre Dame Academy is being recognized as an “Exemplary High Performing School.” The coveted 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.

“As the only all girls school in Northern Kentucky, Notre Dame Academy has a long history of educating young women to make a difference in the world,” said NDA President Laura Koehl. “As a school founded and sponsored by the Sisters of Notre Dame, we believe in an education that combines the timeless wisdom of our Catholic faith with the necessary skills that our students will need to adapt to a continuously changing world. With an innovative approach that integrates academics, arts and athletics, we are molding young women to have a vibrant faith and a passion for learning.”

Shortly after the announcement was made by the U.S. Department of Education, NDA administrators gathered students, faculty and staff to share the good news. The NDA community was elated by the announcement. The school celebrated by distributing National Blue Ribbon candy bars to its students. 

Notre Dame Academy and the other 2019 National Blue Ribbon Schools will be honored at a recognition ceremony on November 14 and 15 in Washington, D.C. A formal National Blue Ribbon celebration will take place at Notre Dame Academy on November 18.