Elected officials celebrate M.S. 74 in Oakland Gardens as 2021 National Blue Ribbon School

Photo via Twitter/Councilman Barry Grodenchik

A middle school in Oakland Gardens recently celebrated its status as a 2021 National Blue Ribbon School, one of only 325 schools across the country to earn this distinction.

On Wednesday, Nov. 17, local elected officials joined students, parents and staff at Nathaniel Hawthorne Middle School 74 for a special ribbon-cutting and ceremony. The U.S. Department of Education-run program recognizes a school’s overall academic performance or progress in closing achievement gaps among student subgroups.

The federal recognition got its start 39 years ago and has been awarded 10,000 times to more than 9,000 schools.

M.S. 74 was one of 18 schools in New York City to earn the Blue Ribbon distinction. The program places schools in one of two performance categories based on all student scores, subgroup student scores and graduations rates. The first is exemplary high-performing schools, based on state assessments or nationally normed tests. The second is exemplary achievement gap-closing schools, which are institutions that have closed achievement gaps between student groups and all students.

Congresswoman Grace Meng, who was in Washington at the time of the ceremony, issued a statement about her alma mater’s achievement.

“As a graduate of Nathaniel Hawthorne Middle School 74, I am extremely proud that it has been named a National Blue Ribbon School. This is a tremendous achievement and it underscores the hard work that the entire school team does in making students succeed and flourish. Congratulations to the entire M.S. 74 school community!”

Other elected officials took to social media to celebrate the Oakland Gardens middle school.

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