On Thursday, KIPP Heartwood Academy of East San Jose was recognized by Secretary of Education Arne Duncan as one of just 21 California schools that have shown a dramatic growth in achievements among students from disadvantaged backgrounds. The school was awarded the Blue Ribbon Award for progress made by its students since 2005, particularly in the core subjects of English and mathematics.

KIPP is a national network of free, open-enrollment, college-preparatory public schools with a track record of preparing students in underserved communities for success in college and in life. There are currently 82 KIPP schools in 19 states and the District of Columbia serving around 20,000 students. As a charter school it believes that demography should not define destiny, and insists that education be perceived as a partnership between parents, students, and teachers that puts learning first. Since it was founded in 2004, KIPP Heartwood Academy has ranked consistently in the top 10 percent of schools in the state of California.

The school has an unusually diverse student body of 400, with almost 80 percent Latino students and 16 percent Asian students. About 18 percent of the students are English-language learners.
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