On Sept. 16, the U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona recognized 297 schools as National Blue Ribbon Schools for 2022. Notre Dame Preparatory High School in Scottsdale was one of four Arizona schools and one of 24 national private schools to earn this honor.

The recognition is based on the school’s overall academic performance or progress in closing achievement gaps among student subgroups.

“I’m really proud of the work we do here at Notre Dame Prep,” said Dr. Gene Sweeney, principal of Notre Dame Prep. Upon being hired at NDP last year, Dr. Sweeney said he was certain Notre Dame Prep deserved to be recognized as a National Blue Ribbon School.

“It was a year-long process that paid off because we earned the recognition our first time ever applying for it,’ Dr. Sweeney said. “Our faculty works hard to educate our students, so this is for them!”

Secretary Cardona made the announcement during his Road to Success Back to School bus tour.

“I applaud all the honorees for the 2022 National Blue Ribbon Schools Award for creating vibrant, welcoming, and affirming school communities where students can learn, grow, reach their potential, and achieve their dreams,” said U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona.

The Department recognizes all schools in one of two performance categories, based on all student scores, subgroup student scores and graduation rates:

  • Exemplary High-Performing Schools are among their state’s highest performing schools as measured by state assessments or nationally normed tests.
  • Exemplary Achievement Gap-Closing Schools are among their state’s highest performing schools in closing achievement gaps between a school’s student groups and all students.

“At NDP, we are so grateful and proud to be able to share this award with our community,” Sweeney said. “We praise God for this blessing.”

Notre Dame Prep joins three other schools in the diocese who have received this award in the past including Xavier College Preparatory (multiple times), Seton Catholic Preparatory, and St. Mary-Basha.