Plavan Elementary School in Fountain Valley has been nominated by the California schools chief Tom Torlakson for the 2013 National Blue Ribbon Schools Program award.

Schools nominated for this significant recognition are performing at very high levels or are making impressive strides in student progress under challenging circumstances, according to a news release.

Schools are eligible to be considered for the National Blue Ribbon Schools Program if they meet either one of two performance criteria:

•Achieve at least the 85th percentile statewide in the percent of students scoring proficient or advanced in English-language arts and mathematics on the state assessments.

•Have at least 40% of their students from a disadvantaged background that are also among the top 10% of schools in the state showing the greatest improvement in the percent of students scoring proficient or advanced in ELA and mathematics on the state assessments over the last five years.

Based on student population, California may nominate up to 35 qualified schools each year. The winners are usually announced in September.

—Alicia Lopez

Twitter: @AliciaLopezHB