DEARBORN — Representatives from Henry Ford Early College and Haigh Elementary received Blue Ribbon School Awards.
The schools learned earlier this year that they would be among 13 schools in Michigan and 325 across the country to receive the recognition.
Haigh Principal Zachary Short, HFEC Director Majed Fadlallah and Superintendent Glenn Maleyko accepted the two awards during a ceremony aired live in Washington, D.C. on Nov. 5.
Short noted that it takes a village and thanked staff, students, PTA and others who are involved at the elementary school.
“I’m very proud of our community,” he said. “We are definitely going to celebrate this together, so coming back in the spring we are going to do a big outdoor event.”
Haigh Elementary has 530 students in Young Fives Kindergarten through fifth grade.
HFEC is an early middle college where students from across Wayne County are allowed to take classes for five years to earn both a high school diploma and associate degree in a healthcare field at no cost to their families. There are 240 students and it is possible due to a partnership between the district, the college and Henry Ford Health System.
“As we received this award in D.C. they told us to brag, so I’m going to brag,” Fadlallah said. “We are a full Title 1 school with a 70 percent low-income rate. We have (English language learner) population. I am very, very proud of our students. I am thankful for the parents who trusted their kids with us. I am extremely appreciative to the staff and faculty of Henry Ford College. Without them, none of this could happen.”
The award presentation brings Dearborn Public Schools to five of the prestigious National Blue Ribbon School awards in as many years.
Iris Becker Elementary was awarded in 2017, STEM Middle School in 2018 and Charles A. Lindbergh Elementary was awarded in 2019.
Henry Ford College President Russell Kavalhuna also attended the event.
“As a citizen of this community this is extraordinary, but ordinary in Dearborn, if you look at the success rate this public school district puts out with its size and, frankly, with the challenges it has,” he said. “It is a national model such that one of our United States senators and one of our congresswomen said to us we are a national standard. That’s something you can be extraordinarily proud of and it is something Henry Ford College is extraordinarily proud of also.”