Two Area Catholic Schools Receive National Blue Ribbon School Award

Two local Catholic schools, St. Augustine Catholic School in Elkridge, Howard County, and Notre Dame Preparatory School in Towson, Baltimore County, received the National Blue Ribbon School of Excellence award today by the U.S. Department of Education. St. Augustine becomes the 15th Catholic school in the Archdiocese of Baltimore to receive the honor over the years. Notre Dame Prep, an independent Catholic school, previously received the designation in 1984-85. The designation is the highest academic honor bestowed upon a school by the U.S. Department of Education.

“St. Augustine’s designation as a National Blue Ribbon School is a testament to the commitment of the entire school community – parents, students, faculty, and administration – to educational excellence,” Catholic Schools Superintendent Dr. Barbara Edmondson said. “This recognition is an honor not only for St. Augustine’s but for Catholic education in the Archdiocese of Baltimore.” Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of Baltimore graduate 97% of its students, 95% of whom go on to attend college.

The Blue Ribbon program honors public and private elementary, middle and high schools that are either academically superior or that demonstrate dramatic gains in student achievement to high levels. The schools will be honored at a ceremony in Washington, DC, on November 12th and will receive a plaque and flag signifying their status. Additionally, St. Augustine’s will hold a community event, on Thursday, September 13th.

“This recognition means so much to me and the teachers, students, parents and community of St. Augustine’s. Although we have known for some time that we have a school where children are nurtured in body, mind, and soul, truly a school of excellence, this highly competitive award confirms that knowledge,” Principal Patricia Schratz said. “We have served the families of Elkridge for 155 years and this is indeed a celebratory moment for us all.”

St. Augustine joins the following Catholic schools in the Archdiocese to be named Blue Ribbon schools.

Mercy High School, Baltimore, 1984-85
Notre Dame Preparatory School, Towson, 1984-85 and 2012-13
Calvert Hall College High School, Towson, 1984-85 and 1988-89
Loyola Blakefield, Towson, 1986-87
St. Rita, Dundalk, 1986-87
Archbishop Keough High School, 1987-88
Mount St. Joseph High School, Irvington, 1988-89
Trinity School, Ellicott City, 1989-90 and 1998-99
Archbishop Spalding High School, Severn, 1992-93
The John Carroll School, Bel Air, 1995-96
St. John the Evangelist, Severna Park, 2008-09
Resurrection-St. Paul School, Ellicott City, 2009
St. John School, Frederick, 2009
St. Louis Catholic School, 2010

St. Augustine Catholic School has a current enrollment of 275 students. Students in grades three through eight far exceeded the national average on standardized tests taken last fall. It is one of 70 Catholic schools serving students in the Archdiocese of Baltimore.

To learn more about an Archdiocese of Baltimore Catholic school, call 1-800-5-CATHOLIC or visit

Sean Caine

Sean Caine is Vice Chancellor and Executive Director of Communications