Two Catholic School Principals Honored for 2023 Terrel H. Bell Award

The Archdiocese of Louisville and the Archdiocese of Philadelphia claim winning principals for Outstanding School Leadership

Arlington, VA – Two Catholic school principals are honorees for the Terrel H. Bell Award for Outstanding School Leadership for 2023. The awardees were announced on October 17 by U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel A. Cardona.  The award-winning principals were selected from the 2023 National Blue Ribbon Schools cohort.  Among the nine are Catholic school principals: Amy Sample, principal of Saint Xavier High School, Archdiocese of Louisville, and Sister Teresa Ballisty, IHM, principal of Saints Phillip and James School, Archdiocese of Philadelphia.

Named for the second U. S. Secretary of Education, Terrel H. Bell, the Bell Award honors school leaders who are committed to education as a powerful and liberating force in people’s lives. The award is part of the National Blue Ribbon Schools Program. Principals are nominated by their school communities during the final stages of the National Blue Ribbon Schools application process.  The complete list of Catholic schools awarded the National Blue Ribbon Schools Award for 2023 is on the NCEA website.

NCEA President/CEO Lincoln Snyder remarked about the special nature of these two principals, “Catholic school principals play a crucial role in shaping the overall educational experience of students in Catholic schools, not the least of which is forming saints. Amy and Sister Teresa embody the core values and principles of the Catholic faith: fostering strong community ties, supporting the professional growth of faculty and staff, serving as moral leaders and advocates for social justice and shaping the hearts, minds and souls of generations to come.”

A complete list of the Terrel H. Bell Award winners is on the Department of Education website, including the impressive biographies of Amy Sample and Sister Teresa Ballisty, IHM. 


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