Release Date: 12/5/2017
Contact: Office of Communications, 443.809.5908

West Towson Elementary named 2017 – 2018 Maryland Blue Ribbon School

Among six recognized by state as exemplary high performing schools

TOWSON, MD — This morning Principal Sue Hershfeld invited four West Towson Elementary School teachers to join her for a meeting at Maryland State Department of Education headquarters. She knew that her school was about to be named one of Maryland’s six newest Blue Ribbon Schools, but the four teachers – Jennifer Berlinger, Alice March, Gretchen Steffen, and Melissa Wachs did not.

Imagine their excitement and pride!

Now Baltimore County Public Schools claims 24 Maryland Blue Ribbon Schools.

“We are so proud of West Towson Elementary School for this latest honor and the high-quality academic program it provides all students," said BCPS Interim Superintendent Verletta White. “Recognitions such as this underscore our systemwide commitment to excellence and equity. Achieving Blue Ribbon status requires strong leadership and a fully engaged teaching staff and student body. Congratulations to Principal Hershfeld and the entire West Towson school community."

The Blue Ribbon Schools Program is a state and national program that recognizes and honors high performance as well as significant progress. Schools must meet rigorous standards developed by MSDE and the U.S. Department of Education. This year, West Towson and the other honored schools were all selected in the category of exemplary high-achieving school. Each scored in the top 15 percent of all Maryland Schools on the 2017 PARCC (Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers) assessments. At West Towson Elementary, an average of 79% of all students met or exceeded expectations in math and English language arts.

As a Maryland Blue Ribbon School, West Towson will receive a Maryland Blue Ribbon flag, a monetary prize, $1,000 in office supplies, interactive technology equipment, and a school celebration. At a dinner in Annapolis on March 12, 2018, the winning schools will be celebrated by the Maryland House of Delegates and the Senate.

Maryland Blue Ribbon Schools compete for National Blue Ribbon Awards, which will be announced by USDE next year.

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