News from CCSD15
September 21, 2021
Walter R. Sundling Wins 2021 National Blue Ribbon School Award
WRS Welcomed Dr. Miguel Cardona, Secretary for the Department of Education, Dr. Carmen Ayala, State Superintendent, and Governor J.B. Pritzker
Dear Community Consolidated School District 15 Staff, Parents/Guardians, & Community,
Please join me in congratulating Walter R. Sundling Junior High School (WRS) for being designated as a 2021 National Blue Ribbon School by the U.S. Department of Education!
We are simply thrilled that Sundling has been awarded this prestigious honor for its commitment to student growth and achievement, and congratulate our talented students, engaged staff, and supportive families for their dedication and partnership in learning.
We could not be more proud that WRS is leading the way within District 15 as we see the positive impact that our renewed areas of focus within our Strategic Plan are having on students across our schools.
This is the second time WRS has achieved National Blue Ribbon status as they previously won this award in 1996. Walter R. Sundling is one of eight other District 15 schools to be designated as National Blue Ribbon Schools in the past. The school was nominated by the Illinois State Board of Education after meeting stringent requirements and was then invited by the U.S Department of Education to apply for the recognition through a comprehensive application process in which the school shared details about its school community such as innovative instructional techniques and programs, its adaptation to both in-person and virtual learning classrooms during COVID-19, and its strong school climate and culture work.
Principal Jason Dietz shared, “We are thrilled to share the excitement of this accomplishment with our students, staff, and families. Our families are true partners in learning who assist us in creating and maintaining our successful school community.”
As part of the U.S. Department of Education’s Return to School Road Trip, Walter R. Sundling Junior High School had the pleasure of welcoming the Secretary of Education, Dr. Miguel Cardona, for a tour of a school. Dr. Cardona was joined by Dr. Carmen Ayala, State Superintendent, and Governor J.B. Pritzker for both the tour and the announcement of the National Blue Ribbon School achievement.
We are overjoyed that Sundling has been awarded this honor for its commitment to the success of the whole child, its engaging classes and electives, and a school setting where staff appreciation and support are evident. I know I speak for the Board and the rest of the administration when I congratulate the students, staff, and families for their dedication to learning and student success.
Our District 15 Board of Education will congratulate the WRS students, staff, and families for its 2021 Blue Ribbon achievement at the October 13, 2021, Board of Education meeting.
Your partner in education,
Laurie Heinz, Ed.D.
Superintendent of Schools