Olive-Mary Stitt school in Arlington Heights wins 2017 National Blue Ribbon

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The U.S. Department of Education recently named Olive-Mary Stitt Elementary School in Arlington Heights a 2017 National

The U.S. Department of Education recently named Olive-Mary Stitt Elementary School in Arlington Heights a 2017 National Blue Ribbon school.

The Arlington Heights School District 25 school was selected as one of this year's winners after being nominated at the state-level and submitting "a pretty meaty application," according to Olive-Mary Stitt Principal Becky FitzPatrick.

"A lot of what we celebrated on our application as what we believe is important, and what we're proud of, is not just our students, teachers and staff, but also all of our parents and neighbors in the community," FitzPatrick said.

In November, representatives from District 25 will be honored at a ceremony in Washington, D.C., FitzPatrick said. Additional celebrations also will be held at the school later that month, she said.

"We anticipated that some of our students might not understand what this award is about, so we gave them the analogy of the Chicago Cubs winning the World Series," FitzPatrick said. "It's almost like the gold medal for schools."

Olive-Mary Stitt is the fifth school at District 25 to receive a National Blue Ribbon, joining Thomas Middle School, which earned one in 1984; Westgate Elementary School, which was selected in 2006; Windsor Elementary School, which was chosen in 2009; and Greenbrier Elementary School, which won one in 2011.

Soaring enrollment at the school, 303 E. Olive St., prompted school officials last year to do a $9 million building project, featuring five new classrooms, a new gymnasium, an expanded commons area and a new playground.

For the 2017-18 school year, enrollment at Olive-Mary Stitt has totaled 607 students, officials said.

Twitter @kcullotta

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