St. Ann School and St. Thomas Aquinas Regional School are among only 49 private schools nationwide to be recognized
St. Ann School, 980 N. Frederick Street, Arlington, and St. Thomas Aquinas Regional School, 13750 Mary’s Way, Woodbridge, have been named National Blue Ribbon Schools by the U.S. Department of Education, giving them recognition as two of America’s most successful schools. St. Ann and St. Thomas Aquinas are two of only 49 private and 256 public schools nationwide to be honored this year.
“This an incredible honor,” said Sr. Maria Goretti, principal of St. Thomas Aquinas Regional School. “This is the result of the hard work and commitment of our entire community, including our wonderful faculty, staff, parents and students.”
The Blue Ribbon Schools Program honors private and public K-12 schools that are high- performing or have shown significant improvement. St. Ann School and St. Thomas Aquinas Regional School rank in the top 10 percent of schools in the nation in both reading and math (based on nationally normed tests) and went through a rigorous application process to receive the Blue Ribbon honor.
The schools’ success can be attributed to their excellent academics and dedicated teachers and staff. St. Ann School, located in North Arlington, has small class sizes (between 11 and 20 students with an average of 17 per class) and has embraced new technologies such as the hands-on science program LabLearner. Community is also an essential part of St. Ann: “As a teacher, it is so gratifying to know you have the incredible support of the school families. Their involvement in the school and encouragement of the children makes teaching even more fulfilling,” said one faculty member.
St. Thomas Aquinas Regional School educates students in the Woodbridge area and is administered by the religious community the Dominican Sisters of St. Cecilia. Faculty and staff support students in reaching their full potential by offering a full range of classes from Spanish to fine arts to technology as well as after school activities such as Junior Varsity and Varsity sports and an award-winning band. The school also offers the STEM Program in partnership with John Hopkins for students in Grades 5-8.
St. Ann School has 208 students in pre-kindergarten through Grade 8 and St. Thomas Aquinas Regional School has 496 students in pre-kindergarten through Grade 8.
In total, 20 of the 45 Arlington diocesan schools – nearly half – have been named Blue Ribbon Schools of Excellence.
“This is a tremendous honor for these schools. We are proud of them and congratulate the faculty and the parents who have chosen Catholic schools and are such an important part of our success,” said Sr. Bernadette McManigal, superintendent of schools for the Diocese of Arlington.