Charlesmont Elementary School in Dundalk is one of two Baltimore County schools and just six in the state to be named 2013 Maryland Blue Ribbon Schools.
Maryland State Department of Education officials made the announcement Thursday morning.
Chadwick Elementary School joins Charlesmont as Baltimore County winners.
Both schools have high percentages of economically disadvantaged students, a factor that did not prevent either school from achieving sustained high academic performance, according to Baltimore County School System officials.
"It is noteworthy that both Chadwick and Charlesmont are Title I schools with high percentages of students from economically disadvantaged families and communities," school system Superintendent S. Dallas Dance said in a statement. "The success of these schools proves once again that family income does not determine academic achievement. Great teachers and principals, involved parents, a strong academic program, and engaged students make all the difference."
At Charlesmont, 65 percent of students are from economically disadvantaged families, according to officials.
Charlesmont students have been high achievers on the Maryland School Assessments, with more than 97.5 percent of students scoring proficient or advanced in reading and 98.7 percent in mathematics, according to the statement.
Monthly parent involvement activities promote collaborative learning at the school, according to officials. Many enrichment and acceleration programs, including the 100 Book Challenge, Research Writing Lab, the annual STEM fair competition and the after-school Overachievers Program, help students excel.
Support from the Friends of Fort McHenry/War of 1812 Maryland Bicentennial Commission and the Southeast Foundation for the Arts Program connects students to local historical institutions and cultural arts events, according to the statement.
The Blue Ribbon School program recognizes at the state and national level schools that meet rigorous standards developed by the Maryland State Department of Education and the U.S. Department of Education.
As a Maryland Blue Ribbon School, Charlesmont and Chadwick are candidates for the national Blue Ribbon designation.
National Blue Ribbon Schools will be announced next September.