More than 700 schools recognized for academic excellence on 2011 Illinois Honor Roll

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Annual list shows continued and improved academic achievement amid rising benchmarks


SPRINGFIELD, IL — The Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) and Northern Illinois University (NIU) announced today that 703 schools made the Illinois Honor Roll for their continued academic progress. The state’s annual recognition program, based on state standardized tests and demographic information, shows 55 schools that are being recognized for the eighth or ninth consecutive year. All of these outstanding schools are being honored for their accomplishments in making progress toward or maintaining academic excellence.

“These Honor Roll schools continue to prove that hard work and reform efforts impact student performance. Community members can and should celebrate their local schools’ success,’’ said State Board of Education Chairman Gery J. Chico. “Behind each school’s success is an untold story of extraordinary passion and dedication on behalf of administrators, teachers, parents and students. We commend each school for its commitment to improvement and excellence.”

Northern Illinois University works with ISBE to establish criteria, identify winners of the awards and administer the Illinois Honor Roll, which is divided into three categories – Spotlight Schools, Academic Excellence, and Academic Improvement. Each award has unique criteria that best reflect the diverse circumstances of Illinois schools.


  • Spotlight Schools – Recognizes 167 high-poverty, high-performing schools that are beating the odds by overcoming the achievement gap.
  • Academic Excellence Awards – 438 schools have sustained high performance over at least three years.
  • Academic Improvement Awards – 114 schools are showing substantial improvement.


The 2011 Honor Roll roster includes elementary, middle and high schools, including charter schools, and represents 312 school districts statewide. Downstate schools represent 41 percent of the Honor Roll schools, suburban schools represent 46 percent and Chicago schools make up the final 13 percent this year. The schools earned a total of 719 awards in the three categories.




Winning Schools

Total District Schools

City of Chicago SD 299




Indian Prairie CUSD 204




Schaumburg CCSD 54




Naperville CUSD 203




Palatine CCSD 15





Other 2011 Illinois Honor Roll facts:

·         At all 114 Academic Improvement Award schools, the number of students meeting or exceeding standards increased by at least 7.5 points over one year or 15 points over two years.

·         Three schools, listed below, won the Academic Improvement Award, sustaining annual 7.5 point improvements, for the fifth year. Seven schools, six in Chicago and one in East St. Louis, won the Academic Improvement Award for the fourth time.  

Five-Year Winners of the Academic Improvement Award

Cather Elementary School


Beidler Elementary School


Harvard Elementary School



·         Three Spotlight Schools, listed below, are receiving their ninth award this year, having maintained high level performance since the award began in 2003, and 11 schools earned the award for the eighth year.


Nine-Year Winners of the Spotlight Schools Award

Franklin Elementary School


Jones College Preparatory High School


Dewey Elementary School



·         In 2011, 40 Academic Excellence schools sustained their long-term high achievement and won an eighth award, 38 schools are being recognized for the seventh time and 18 for the sixth time.

·         In 2011, 222 Academic Excellence elementary schools showed increases in scores over last year, even though they started at a baseline above 90 percent of students meeting or exceeding standards.

·         This year, 10 schools won both the Spotlight Schools award and the Academic Excellence Award. Among them is a Chicago high school, Jones College Preparatory which has made the Honor Roll more than any school in the state with 16 awards since the Honor Roll began in 2003. Here is a list of those winners:

Winners of Both Spotlight Schools and Academic Excellence Awards

Jones College Preparatory School


Lane Technical High School


Vanderpoel Elementary Magnet School


Brown Elementary School

East St. Louis

Irvington Elementary School


Arcadia Elementary School

Olympia Fields

Willow Elementary School


Norwood Primary School


Tefft Middle School


William F. Murphy Elementary School



·         Six schools won both the Spotlight Schools award and the Academic Improvement Award. Here is a list of those winners: 

Winners of both Spotlight Schools and Academic Improvement Awards

Black Magnet Elementary School


Columbus Elementary School


Martin L. King Elementary School


Alta Sita Elementary School

East St. Louis

Annette Officer Elementary School

East St. Louis

Farmersville Elementary School



A complete listing of the 2011 Illinois Honor Roll Schools can be found online at

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