Blue Ribbon Honor Given to Bushwick Charter School


Rainier Harris

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Editors Note: A correction has been made to reflect that both Achievement First Elementary and Middle School earned the Blue Ribbon School Award. A previous version of the article omitted AF Bushwick middle school in the announcement. 

Achievement First Bushwick Charter School (AF Bushwick) was among 362 schools across the country given the coveted Blue Ribbon Schools award, U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos announced Thursday. 

AF Bushwick was distinguished among “Exemplary High Performing Schools,” defined as schools that “are among their state’s highest performing schools as measured by state assessments or nationally normed tests.” 

“It felt amazing,” said Courtney Saretzky, Principal of AF Bushwick Elementary School, in an email to Bushwick Daily. “To earn national recognition for what we’re doing — at the core, ensuring our students get an outstanding education and build a strong sense of self belief — is both humbling and so exciting.”

In a video message to the honorees DeVos said, “As a National Blue Ribbon School, [AF Bushwick] demonstrates what is possible when committed educators hold all students and staff to high standards and create vibrant, innovative cultures of teaching and learning.” The National Blue Ribbon Schools program has given recognition to more than 9,000 schools since its founding in 1982. 

AF Bushwick is home to students in kindergarten through eighth grade, which includes both Elementary and Middle School that received the Blue Ribbon honor.  AF Bushwick is one of eight New York City educational institutions given the honor this year and one of three in Brooklyn. The honorees will convene at an awards ceremony in Washington D.C. on  November 14-15. 

Cover Photo from State Department Website

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