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Herricks High School Named a National Blue Ribbon School

Herricks High School Named a National Blue Ribbon School


In an announcement that was officially presented by the United States Department of Education on Sept. 28, Herricks High School was named a National Blue Ribbon School for 2017. Herricks was recognized for academic excellence as a high-performing school – one of two possible grounds for selection. The other is the ability to close achievement gaps among student subgroups.

As stated by the United States Department of Education, a 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. Herricks Middle School earned this distinction in 1997, and the high school dedicated time to completing a comprehensive application process this past year.

The high school met the “Exemplary High-Performing Schools” standards by falling within the top 15 percent of all schools in New York State for assessment results and demonstrating other exceptional statistics, such as high graduation rates. Additionally, each of the school’s subgroups were required to be among the top 40 percent in the state when looking at these same criteria.  

Herricks students shine as high-performing scholars, artists, musicians and athletes. Each year, they are recognized with local, state and national awards in a variety of academic subjects. They continue to earn accolades from the National Merit Scholarship Program as scholarship winners, finalists, semifinalists and/or commended students. They flourish in the STEAM areas of science, technology, engineering, the arts and mathematics, taking highly sought-after titles such as Regeneron Scholars and Siemens Competition finalists and semifinalists, among many others.

Writers thrive in the English Scholars Program, which provides them with an enriching language arts outlet while preparing them for the challenges of college and beyond. Students also have a longstanding success streak at the New York State History Day Competition as well as the prestigious Kenneth E. Behring National History Day competition, where they have earned many prominent awards as a result of in-depth research.

Herricks is a NAMM-designated Best Community for Music Education, and students are selected to national and statewide musical showcases and festivals annually. Athletes are committed to their sports, and Herricks has celebrated numerous championship teams in the past few years.

While their areas of interest may vary, Herricks High School students share several common qualities. They are dedicated, determined and competitive, but also compassionate. This is evident not only when looking at awards, but also in the many efforts that are coordinated each year by teams, clubs, organizations and other groups to pay it forward and make a difference to others through fundraisers and donation initiatives. The district also places a heavy emphasis on mindfulness and takes time to equip students with tools they can use for self-management and social awareness.

“What ultimately makes Herricks so special is the strong sense of connection within the schools and community that is demonstrated by tolerance, acceptance and kindness,” said Principal Dr. James Ruck. “Our diversity, and emphasis on social-emotional learning, provides an atmosphere where students constantly learn and grow from one another.”

Overall, Herricks High School is committed to a student-centered environment that encourages students and teachers to be active participants in the world, working together to find solutions to relevant issues.

“This national honor affirms and recognizes the District’s commitment to continuous improvement, academic excellence and innovative programs for all students,” said Superintendent of Schools Dr. Fino Celano. “Achieving the Blue Ribbon Award is the result of the collective efforts on the part of our dedicated Board of Education, talented faculty and administration, supportive parents, and hard-working and compassionate students.”