Morris Hill Elementary Named National Blue Ribbon School

Students on playground

Morris Hill Elementary, in Fort Riley, has been named a 2022 National Blue Ribbon School by the U.S. Department of Education. The Geary County USD 475 public school was one of only three schools in the state of Kansas, and 297 nationwide, recognized Sept. 16 by U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona.

The award affirms and validates the hard work of students, educators, families, and communities in attaining exemplary achievement. Blue Ribbon Schools serve as models of effective school practices for state and district educators and schools throughout the nation.

The program recognizes schools in one of two performance categories: “Exemplary High-Performing” and “Exemplary Achievement Gap-Closing.” Morris Hill is being recognized as an “Exemplary High-Performing” school for demonstrating outstanding overall academic achievement.

“This is really exciting for the Morris Hill Panthers,” said Morris Hill Principal Melisa Burgess. “Our staff works hard to create positive relationships that build trust as we welcome families from around the world, and we are supportive of one another and care about our students’ academic and social-emotional success.”

“This is a tremendous accomplishment for Morris Hill Elementary, and we are very proud of the staff and administrators’ efforts,” said USD 475 Superintendent Reginald Eggleston, Ed.D. “This recognition proves that focusing on student achievement and partnering with parents produces student success.”

USD 475 has received 11 Blue Ribbon School awards in the past 20 years. Custer Hill Elementary received it in 2002 and 2003, Sheridan and Jefferson Elementaries in 2004, Ware Elementary in 2005, Morris Hill and Eisenhower Elementaries in 2007, Franklin Elementary in 2010, and Eisenhower and Sheridan Elementaries in 2017.

Burgess and another school representative are invited to attend the National Blue Ribbon School award ceremony in Washington, D.C., in November.