2022 National Blue Ribbon School Winners Announced

Congratulations to those who were recognized as 2022 National Blue Ribbon Schools and the recipients of the 2022 Terrel H. Bell Award for Outstanding School Leadership.

The U.S. Department of Education honored exceptional school leaders at a ceremony for the National Blue Ribbon Schools. At a ceremony Nov. 3, David Griffith, NAESP associate executive director, Policy and Advocacy, gave congratulatory remarks to this year’s 297 National Blue Ribbon Schools.

“In these difficult times, your schools have not only survived, they have thrived,” said Griffith, during his remarks. “Your impressive accomplishments demonstrate to the nation that all students can achieve to high levels. Make sure you fly your National Blue Ribbon School flag with pride as a symbol of exemplary teaching and learning.”

Through overall academic excellence or progress in closing achievement gaps among student subgroups, awardees have demonstrated that all students can achieve at high levels.

“I applaud all the honorees for the 2022 National Blue Ribbon Schools Award for creating vibrant, welcoming, and affirming school communities where students can learn, grow, reach their potential, and achieve their dreams,” said U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona ahead of the ceremony. “As our country continues to recover from the pandemic, we know that our future will only be as strong as the education we provide to all of our children. Blue Ribbon Schools have gone above and beyond to keep students healthy and safe while meeting their academic, social, emotional, and mental health needs. These schools show what is possible to make an enduring, positive difference in students’ lives.”

Of the cohort of National Blue Ribbon Schools, nine principals also received the 2022 Terrel H. Bell Award for Outstanding School Leadership award, including two NAESP members: James Sonju, principal of Lincoln K-8 School in Rochester, Minnesota, and Brigett Steward, principal of Piedmont Elementary School in Piedmont, Alabama, who also was a 2022 NAESP National Distinguished Principal. The honor, named for the secretary of education serving during President Ronald Reagan’s administration, highlights exceptional school leaders.