Oak Mountain High named Blue Ribbon School

By AMY JONES / Associate Editor

NORTH SHELBY — Oak Mountain High School continues to rack up the awards.

The U.S. Department of Education has named Oak Mountain a National Blue Ribbon School — one of only 304 schools in the country to be honored as such this year.

The award is considered the highest honor an American school can achieve, and comes after Oak Mountain also made the lists of top American high schools in both Newsweek magazine and The Washington Post.

Oak Mountain Principal Joan Doyle said the awards keep coming because faculty and staff are “never satisfied.”

“We don’t rest on our laurels. I think we will continue to try to be better,” she said. “We will not ever be satisfied, we will always try to improve and meet the needs of all our students.”

Doyle said while she appreciates all the national recognition, the National Blue Ribbon award means the most.

“This award is coveted in the education arena,” she said. “It says that we are a top school in this nation, and that means so much.”

Oak Mountain is in its 13th year of existence, and it took the 12 previous years to be good enough to win this award, Doyle said.

“It’s a culmination of 12 years. It’s a collaboration between our community, our parents, the other schools in our community, our students and the dedication of our faculty and staff,” she said. “You get all that going in the right direction and you have something really special, and we believe we have something really special here at Oak Mountain High School.”

Superintendent Randy Fuller said Oak Mountain serves as an example to other schools in the system.

“Oak Mountain High School has been a model of excellence in education at all levels,” Fuller said. “We are very proud of them and want to congratulate the faculty, staff, students and community.”

Five other Shelby County schools have been recognized over the years with the Blue Ribbon School Award, including Riverchase Middle School, Valley Elementary, Elvin Hill Elementary, Oak Mountain Elementary and Inverness Elementary.

The U.S. Department of Education will honor all 304 Blue Ribbon schools at a conference and awards ceremony Nov. 14-15 in Washington D.C.