First-graders are seen on their second day of school on Thursday, August 12, 2021, at Second Creek Elementary School in Commerce City. (Olivia Sun, The Colorado Sun)

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Six Colorado schools have been named 2021 National Blue Ribbon Schools, a prestigious recognition that can be based on overall academic performance or on helping traditionally underserved student groups make more progress.

Nationally, just 325 schools were named National Blue Ribbon Schools this year.

This year’s Colorado winners include three in Denver Public Schools, the state’s largest district, one in Boulder, one in LaSalle, a Weld County town near Greeley, and a private Christian school in Highlands Ranch.

They are:

  • High Peaks Elementary School in the Boulder Valley School District
  • Carson Elementary School in Denver Public Schools
  • McKinley-Thatcher Elementary School in Denver Public Schools
  • William Roberts ECE-8 School in Denver Public Schools
  • Valor Christian High School in Highlands Ranch
  • North Valley Middle School in LaSalle


Erica Meltzer is Bureau Chief of Chalkbeat Colorado, where she also covers the legislature and statewide education issues. Erica was a founding editor of the local news site Denverite. Before that, she covered everything from housing and energy...