Army.mil - Kathy Eastwood, West Point Public Affairs
West Point, NY | September 21, 2011
On Sept. 15, David Rudy, principal of the West Point Middle School, learned the school was named a 2011 National Blue Ribbon school by the Department of Education.
The WPMS is one of 304 National Blue Ribbon schools in the nation and the only Department of Defense Education Activity School to receive the distinction this year.
Although Rudy was aware of the Blue Ribbon distinction by 10 a.m., on the day the annoucement was made, he "was sworn to secrecy" until 2:30 p.m.
It was then that Rudy called all the teachers to the WPMS conference room for a teleconference with Dr. Mike Gould, Superintendent of DoDEA's New York/Virginia/Puerto Rico District and Dr. Linda Curtis, acting DoDEA director, to announce the award.
"We looked at the way you are challenging yourselves, how you expand on differentiated instruction, which is very challenging for a middle school, and the way you challenge your students to learn," Gould said. "WPMS has consistently placed students above the 88th percentile in standardized testing.
"The faculty, staff and administration foster a culture of high expectations for all students and they are committed to student success," he added. "This group of professionals and the supportive school community are a team that truly deserves this recognition."
After the announcement, Rudy commended the teachers for their continuous dedication to educating West Point children.
"No matter what I throw at you, you always go for it," Rudy said. "We have incredible support from the community, the garrison and parents who are very involved with their children's education."
The Blue Ribbon Program is a part of the Department of Education's effort to identify and disseminate best school practices and leadership. The Blue Ribbon School award honors public and private elementary, middle and high schools that have helped close the achievement gap and whose students attain and maintain high academic goals. West Point Middle School is among the more than 6,000 schools that have received the award over the past 28 years.