St. Francis of Assisi School and its parish community celebrated the school’s 2022 Blue Ribbon Award with a program and dinner in the parish hall Nov. 19, two months after the award was announced by the U.S. Department of Education.
Dr. Mary Beth Bowling, superintendent of schools, spoke to the educators, pastors and families who attended the evening celebration, saying the school’s strong foundation helped earn the distinction.
In describing what St. Francis had accomplished, Bowling drew an analogy from “The Three Little Pigs.”
“The houses of straws and sticks did not withstand the big wind created by the Big Bad Wolf, but the house of bricks stood proud and tall and protected and nurtured the three pigs,” Bowling said. “St. Francis is the house of bricks. You’ve been able to achieve excellence because the school is rooted in Gospel values and embraces its mission.”
Bowling said the school has formed “such a strong foundation” that even during the pandemic years they were able to keep achieving “academic excellence.”
St. Francis principal Dr. Steven Frommeyer, teachers, the pastor and families created a “solid framework” within which students could keep learning safely, she said. The Blue Ribbon designation is a result, she said.
“St. Francis put their arms around their students and they made sure they didn’t miss a beat, and you know how difficult that was,” Bowling said.
The school was one of two non-public schools in the state to earn the designation this year, according to the U.S. Department of Education.
This is the second time St. Francis has earned the distinction. It was previously honored in 2016.