Boonsboro High School was named a Maryland Blue Ribbon School, one of six schools in the state to win the honor for 2013, officials announced Thursday.
Schools are recognized by the Maryland State Department of Education after meeting a specific set of criteria.
“This is a true community effort. We wouldn’t have been considered if it wasn’t,” said Peggy Pugh, Boonsboro High’s principal.
Pugh said that for Boonsboro High School to be considered for the award, it had to be among the top 15 percent of high schools in Maryland.
According to a press release from Washington County Public Schools, Boonsboro High students performed exceptionally well in the state’s High School Assessment tests.
Ninety-eight percent of students cleared the English assessment. For the math assessment, the percentage of students passing the test was 99.5 percent.
“Of the current senior class, 59 percent of the students have taken the SAT,” with an average score of 1604, the release says.
Trying to achieve excellence also means that student activities extend beyond the school day, Pugh said.
“Our students take part in the Physics and Chemistry Olympics,” she said.
Pugh said that the MSDE also looks at how consistent the schools are in their performance.
The school will now have an opportunity to apply to be named a National Blue Ribbon School.
“I think we have a great chance of doing it,” Pugh said.
She said one joke she heard at the ceremony in Baltimore on Thursday, where the Blue Ribbon Schools were announced, was that a real estate boom was sure to follow in the Boonsboro area because of the many parents who would want to move there because of Boonsboro High’s growing reputation.
The school also had the highest rank among Washington County schools in the U.S. News and World report school rankings.
Every school that receives the state Blue Ribbon gets a Blue Ribbon flag, a $2,000 cash award, an indoor mural and a “schoolwide pizza party.”
That would mean pizza for about 930 students and 114 employees, including 64 certified teachers.
A date for the pizza party had not been decided yet, Pugh said.