2012 Department of Education Blue Ribbon Recognition
On Friday, September 7, 2012, U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan announced the recipients of the U.S. Department of Education’s 2012 Blue Ribbon Schools program. Our dear school, LITTLE ROCK CHRISTIAN ACADEMY, is on the list of 269 schools from across the nation and one of three from Arkansas to receive the esteemed blue ribbon. Our particular Blue Ribbon designation is “EXEMPLARY HIGH- PERFORMING.” The National Blue Ribbon flag has become a trademark of excellence.
This year, out of 100,000 schools in America, 269 schools were granted the coveted Blue Ribbon award. Of the 269 recipient schools, 219 are public schools; fty are private schools from across the nation. Little Rock Christian is one of the fty schools. (By the way, there are only five Christian schools on the list of 269.)
In the thirty year history of the U.S. Department of Education Blue Ribbon Schools program, no Little Rock school has received the award - until this year. What an afirmation for Little Rock for two schools to be recognized as exemplary, high-performing schools. Congratulations to Forest Park Elementary School of Little Rock who also received a blue ribbon.
The U.S. Department of Education bestows this highest honor upon our school as a K-12 unit school. Therefore, under one umbrella of Little Rock Christian Academy, our elementary school, middle school, and high school are so recognized.
The Council of American Private Education tells us that blue ribbon awards for K-12 unit schools are rare. What a testimony to the vision and mission of our school and the daily focus of our teachers and students.
Rooted and built up on 35 years of godly history, the mission of Little Rock Christian is clear: the K-12 education we provide is characterized by excellence and permeated with a Christ-centered worldview.
In biblical language, excellence means “fulfilling one’s potential or purpose.” Our Board of Trust puts it this way: Little Rock Christian Academy seeks to be a pre-eminent K-12 academic institution that o ers an excellent college- preparatory curriculum all the while teaching and modeling the truth of Jesus Christ.
Simply put, we claim a double mandate: we must do Jesus well; we must do education well. How fitting that our school theme this year is “Walk Worthy!”
The diligent work, perseverance, commitment, and high standards of our professionals have earned our school this high honor. Test scores, school culture, best practices in the classroom, and breadth and depth of program combined for us to receive this respected award. As a K-12 school – elementary, middle school, and high school - our Golden Triangle of home, church, and school working together is getting results.
Vision, mission, strategic plan, professionalism, student engagement, lifelong learning, and a devotion to truth in Jesus Christ all contribute to this respected award. But, ultimately, classroom dynamics and student achievement sealed the deal for us - teachers and students learning together.
By God’s grace, He has permitted us to rightly receive recognition for a job well done. With humble and grateful hearts, we will obey the command in Leviticus to walk with our heads held high.
Special thanks to our educational leaders, our faculty, and our students for their achievements that bring this to pass.
Again, to receive a U.S. Department of Education blue ribbon award is of the highest honor in K-12 education. We are grateful to God for the opportunity to shine for Him. Thank you for believing in us and entrusting your children to us. May God be praised and magni ed by this honor. It is signi cant to have objective evidence that we are ful lling our potential and purpose.
This blue ribbon is for you; it’s for us; it’s for Him. Gratefully yours,
Gary B. Arnold, Ed. D. Head of School / President
“Walk in a manner pleasing to the Lord ... bearing fruit in every good work ...” (Colossians 1:10)