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Posted: September 27, 2019

APS Magnet School Named National Blue Ribbon School

The Career Enrichment Center and Early College Academy earned the coveted award from the U.S. Department of Education for overall exemplary high academic performance.

Albuquerque Public Schools Career Enrichment Center and Early College Academy has been named a National Blue Ribbon School for 2019. The U.S. Department of Education recognized the APS magnet school for overall academic performance.

"We recognize and honor your important work in preparing students for successful careers and meaningful lives," said U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos in a video message to the honorees. "As a National Blue Ribbon School, your school demonstrates what is possible when committed educators hold all students and staff to high standards and create vibrant, innovative cultures of teaching and learning."

The coveted National Blue Ribbon Schools award, which went to 362 schools across the nation, affirms the hard work of educators, families, and communities in creating safe and welcoming schools where students master challenging and engaging content.

The Career Enrichment Center is a magnet school that provides opportunities for advanced, in-depth learning. Students from all Albuquerque high schools can choose unique courses from a variety of career areas, including nursing, emergency, pre- and veterinary medicine, computers, engineering, health, languages, business, and vocational classes. CEC’s distinctive programs attract a wide variety of students from all geographic areas and socioeconomic groups in Albuquerque. The blending of strong academic, career and technical classes enhances the education of students.

The Early College Academy is a college-prep magnet high school and sister school to the CEC that focuses on college preparation. Classes are offered to 200 students in a small school environment. ECA classes are scheduled in the morning so that students may take CEC, UNM, or CNM classes in the afternoon. UNM and CNM classes may apply toward an associate or university degree. ECA’s small-school environment offers students an intimate and personalized college-readiness learning experience.

“ECA and CEC position students ahead of the curve in an increasingly complicated world by developing critical thinking, communication, collaboration, reasoning, and problem-solving skills,” Principal Patrick Arguelles wrote in the school’s Blue Ribbon School application. “The schools address the whole student's development – academic focus, social-emotional needs, and well-being. Students are prepared to survive in the global, competitive 21st-century workforce by focusing on career progression through long-range educational and career planning.”

ECA and CEC were nominated as a Blue Ribbon School by the New Mexico Public Education Department. The secretary and the Department of Education will honor the school at an awards ceremony in Washington, D.C. in November. 

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