PS 5 celebrates excellence as a Blue Ribbon school
STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. -- Students, parents, faculty and community members gathered outside PS 5, in Huguenot, Monday morning to celebrate the school's status as a national Blue Ribbon school of excellence.
"Today is an awesome day," said Principal Lisa Arcuri. "I am so proud of our PS 5 family."
The school was named a national Blue Ribbon school of excellence by U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan in September. The tiny school was cited for its overall academic excellence.
PS 5 is one of 7,000 American schools to receive the award over the past 32 years. Other Staten Island schools that have been honored with Blue Ribbon status over the years include: PS 48, Concord; PS 53, Bay Terrace; Staten Island Technical High School, New Dorp; Tottenville High School, and Port Richmond High School.
Congressman Dan Donovan, who was at the school Monday morning, said that receiving the award was "really cool," adding with a chuckle, "This doesn't mean you can slack off now. When you're the best, people expect you to stay the best. You've all worked so hard, I know you will continue to be the best."
Donovan was joined by Assemblyman Joe Borelli (R-South Shore), who was recently elected to City Council. He congratulated the students on a job well-done by granting them an evening of no homework under one condition -- they must go home and think about what a great job they've done and how they will continue to be excellent in the future.
School Superintendent Anthony Lodico, Rose Kerr of the Borough President's Office and others also spoke at the ceremony, all noting the exemplary leadership of Arcuri.
The school's Parent Teacher Association donated a banner that notes the school's Blue Ribbon status.
"Students, this is your award for being so hard-working and successful. This happened because we all work together," Arcuri said, holding up the award she received from Duncan.
The school enrolls about 260 students from kindergarten through fifth grade. More than 70 percent of its students from third, fourth and fifth grades met or exceeded state standards in Common Core reading and math exams administered in April.