Public Information


Northern High School Receives Blue Ribbon School Award 

Last Updated on Dec 13, 2013 at 3:12pm | Public Information Office

Northern High School Receives Blue Ribbon School Award
Pictured (L-R): Matthew Paugh, Board Member; Janet Wilson, Superintendent; April Fleming, teacher; Elizabeth Deem, teacher; Derek Berger, teacher; Darla Strouse, MSDE; Gary Reichenbecher, Principal; Paul Edwards, Director of Secondary Education; Cynthia Downton, Board President; and Charlotte Sebold, Board Member. (Absent from the picture was Thomas Carr, Board Vice-President.)
To view the video from awards ceremony at MSDE, visit: or
The Maryland State Department of Education announced at its monthly meeting today that Northern Garrett High School was named recipient of Maryland’s 2014 Blue Ribbon School Award. A total of six Maryland schools from Allegany, Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Garrett, Montgomery, and Prince George’s Counties were recipients of this prestigious award.

Dr. Janet Wilson, Superintendent of Schools, expressed, "This is spectacular news for Garrett County Public Schools. This is truly a credit to a very hard working and dedicated faculty, staff, and students. We celebrate this accomplishment and look forward to the National Competition."

With underwriting of Maryland sponsors, the school will receive a Maryland Blue Ribbon Flag, a monetary prize, an interactive Smart Board, and a school-wide Pizza Party. A dinner in Annapolis will be held in honor of the six winning schools next spring. On that date, each Blue Ribbon School will be honored by the Maryland House of Delegates and the Senate.

Cynthia Downton, Board of Education President stated, “What a wonderful accomplishment for Northern High School and the students. We know the quality of education our students are receiving, and this is what keeps us positive on a daily basis. As always, we ask our employees to do more with less, and this accolade just proves what an exceptional job they are doing. Congratulations to Northern High School!”

The Blue Ribbon Schools Program is a state and national program that recognizes and honors schools that exhibit high performance and/or significant improvement in reading and mathematics achievement as measured by Maryland’s assessments. Schools must meet rigorous standards developed by the Maryland State Department of Education and the U.S. Department of Education. These schools are all high achievers in reading and mathematics, and many serve a significant number of economically disadvantaged students. Other achievement indicators include school leadership, professional development, instructional approaches, and parent and community involvement. Maryland can select up to six schools for recognition, based on its school-age population.

The Maryland Blue Ribbon Schools go on to compete for National Blue Ribbon Awards, which will be announced by the U.S. Department of Education next September.
MSDE’s summary of Northern High School is as follows: Northern Garrett High School offers a rigorous program of merit, honors, and Advanced Placement instruction in all core areas. In addition, college credit courses in English and math are offered through a Distance Learning Classroom. Every student at Northern Garrett has a four-year plan with an identified pathway within one of four clusters: Arts and Human Services; Business, Management, and Finance; Engineering and Technology; and Life Sciences and Natural Resources. The FFA organization, one of eleven CTE programs located within the school, was named as the State of Maryland’s Career and Technology Student Organization of the Year. Northern Garrett was recently recognized as one of the Nation’s Best High Schools and named a Silver Medal School by The U.S. News and World Report. The overall pass rate on both the Algebra and English High School Assessments is above 95 percent. In addition, with 40 percent of its students on Free and Reduced Meals, 81 percent of these students obtained passing scores on all required High School Assessments. Northern has always achieved Adequate Yearly Progress and is now categorized in Strand 1 based on their School Progress Indicators.
Want more news?
See All Garrett County Public Schools News