National Blue Ribbon Schools

National Blue Ribbon Award and Process

Since 1982, the National Blue Ribbon Award is the highest award bestowed to schools by the United States Department of Education. Recognition such as this can bring welcomed and deserved attention to schools and go a long way to enhance marketing efforts.

As stated on the Council for American Private Education (CAPE) website, the National Blue Ribbon Schools Program recognizes public and private elementary, middle, and high schools based on their overall academic excellence or their progress in closing achievement gaps among student subgroups. The National Blue Ribbon School award affirms the hard work of students, educators, families, and communities in creating safe and welcoming schools where students master challenging content. National Blue Ribbon Schools are honored each fall at a recognition ceremony in Washington, DC. The applications from the award-winning schools are posted on the US Department of Education website.

The deadline for private schools to indicate your intent to apply for the U.S. Department of Education's 2023 National Blue Ribbon Schools Program is Wednesday, October 26, 2022.

Private School Criteria

The National Blue Ribbon Schools Program recognizes private schools that meet the Exemplary High Performing Schools criteria, which is defined as:

  • Exemplary High Performing Schools:  Schools that are ranked among the state’s highest performing schools as measured by state assessments in both reading (English language arts) and mathematics or that score at the highest performance level on tests referenced by national norms in at least the most recent year tested.

Private School Applications and Nominations Requirements

CAPE nominates private schools. The private schools must indicate they want to apply and then submit applications by the deadlines indicated on CAPE’S Blue Ribbon Schools web page. CAPE reviews the applications and may nominate up to 50 private schools, including parochial and independent schools, each year. Current application requirements are available on CAPE's Blue Ribbon Schools web page.


National Blue Ribbon Schools 2022

The National Blue Ribbon Schools Program has honored and recognized great American public and private elementary, middle, and high schools since 1982. Every year, Catholic elementary and secondary schools are among the hundreds of public and private schools identified by the U.S. Department of Education as National Blue Ribbon Schools. 24 private schools are among the awardees this year and 22 of those were Catholic schools. Each state's commissioner of education nominates public schools for the award and the Council for American Private Education (CAPE) nominates the private schools. Representatives from each school are invited to an awards ceremony in November in Washington, D.C. This award is a great tribute to the dedication of faculties who clearly value academic excellence, as well as to the commitment of students who strive to succeed to the best of their ability. Each of these schools exemplifies the best of Catholic education, and all of us at the National Catholic Educational Association are extremely proud of the efforts of these school communities that led to this tremendous accomplishment.

NCEA congratulates the following schools in 2022:


Notre Dame Preparatory High School
9701 East Bell Road
Scottsdale, AZ 85260-2125
Diocese of Phoenix


Holy Spirit Catholic School
11665 Ft. Caroline Road
Jacksonville, FL 32225‐1645
Diocese of St. Augustine

Saint Thomas Aquinas High School
2801 SW 12th Street
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33312‐2953
Archdiocese of Miami


Christ the King Elementary School
9240 S Hoyne Avenue
Chicago, IL 60643‐6303
Archdiocese of Chicago


Cathedral High School
5225 E 56th Street
Indianapolis, IN 46226‐1487
Archdiocese of Indianapolis

Christ the King Catholic School
5858 N. Crittenden Avenue
Indianapolis, IN 46220‐2841
Archdiocese of Indianapolis

Saint Paul Catholic School
1755 W. Harrison Boulevard
Valparaiso, IN 46385‐7018
Diocese of Gary


Saint Francis of Assisi School
1938 Alfresco Place
Louisville, KY 40205‐1572
Archdiocese of Louisville

Saint Therese School
2516 Alexandria Pike
Southgate, KY 41071‐3298
Diocese of Covington


Mount Alvernia Academy
20 Manet Road
Chestnut Hill, MA 02467‐1018
Archdiocese of Boston


Immaculate Conception School
3555A S Fremont
Springfield, MO 65804‐4237
Springfield Catholic Schools


Skutt Catholic High School
3131 S 156th Street
Omaha, NE 68130‐1906
Archdiocese of Omaha 


Corpus Christi School
920 Sumneytown Pike
Lansdale, PA 19446‐5414
Archdiocese of Philadelphia

Mother Teresa Regional Catholic School
405 Allendale Road
King of Prussia, PA 19406‐1415
Archdiocese of Philadelphia

South Dakota

Holy Spirit Elementary School
4309 S Bahnson Avenue
Sioux Falls, SD 57103‐5879
Bishop O'Gorman Catholic Schools


All Saints Catholic School
7777 Osage Plaza Parkway
Dallas, TX 75252‐6825
Diocese of Dallas

Jesuit College Preparatory School of Dallas
12345 Inwood Road
Dallas, TX 75244‐8024
Diocese of Dallas

St. Anne Catholic School
2120 Westheimer Road
Houston, TX 77098‐1493
Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston

Saint Cecilia Catholic School
11740 Joan Of Arc
Houston, TX 77024‐2602
Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston

St. John the Apostle Catholic School
7421 Glenview Drive
North Richland Hills, TX 76180‐8387
Diocese of Fort Worth

Saint Vincent de Paul Catholic School
6802 Buffalo Speedway
Houston, TX 77025‐1405
Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston


Saint Agnes School
2024 N. Randolph Street
Arlington, VA 22207‐3099
Diocese of Arlington
More information and an archive of past awardee schools can be found at the U.S. Department of Education and the Council for American Private Education National Blue Ribbon Schools Program websites.