School Without Walls (SWW), a college-preparatory public high school in the District, was named a 2010 National Blue Ribbon School, a distinction by the U.S. Department of Education that ranks it among the highest achieving schools nationwide.

Department of Education Secretary Arne Duncan joined DC Mayor Adrian M. Fenty, DC Public Schools Chancellor Michelle Rhee and George Washington University Provost Steven Lerman today at SWW to announce that the District high school is among more than 300 public and private schools nationwide to earn the Blue Ribbon recognition this year.

The Blue Ribbon Schools Program recognizes and honors public and private elementary, middle and high schools whose students achieve at very high levels or have made significant progress and helped close gaps in achievement, especially among disadvantaged and minority students.

“School Without Walls is a perfect example of what District schools can achieve,” said Fenty in a statement. “SWW consistently aims high and illustrates what our students can do when challenged by a professional staff with high expectations. As the Administration continues to successfully build upon our public education initiative, parents and residents can expect to see even more achievement and academic gains to come.”

With an enriched curriculum and focus on academic rigor, 100 percent of SWW’s graduates are accepted to four-year colleges and universities and receive between $3 million and $6 million a year in scholarships and awards.

In addition, 20 SWW students are enrolled full-time at GWU, earning college credit at no cost. DCPS pays the cost of textbooks – upwards of $500 per student – to support these extremely hard-working and motivated students in their efforts toward high achievement at the college level.
School Without Walls joins two other DCPS schools – Noyes and Murch elementary schools – to earn the distinction over the past three years. “Congratulations to School Without Walls Principal Richard Trogisch and his dedicated staff for this well-deserved honor,” said Rhee in a press release.

“School Without Walls has made incredible strides academically over the past three years, and the school’s partnership with The George Washington University ensures that our students not only achieve at the highest levels in secondary school but also succeed at the college level.”