More than 100 elementary schools in Los Angeles County and 35 in Orange County were among 323 learning institutions statewide that earned a spot on the “2020 Distinguished Schools” list drawn up by the California Department of Education, it was announced Wednesday.
“These outstanding schools don’t just educate students; they also provide the young people of California the tools they need to be successful after graduation,” State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond said. “Thanks go to all the staff at these schools — teachers, administrators, classified employees — and parents, who are working together to provide high-quality educational experiences for all of their students.”
Placement on the list generally requires a school to exhibit “exceptional student performance” or closure of the achievement gap from one academic year to the next, according to the DOE.
Administrators determine eligibility by examining “California School Dashboard Indicators,” which track trends in test scores per campus, as well as suspension rates and learning environment conditions. The California Assessment of Student Performance & Progress is one of the key metrics.
“Distinguished School awardees represent examples of not just excellent teaching, learning and collaboration, but also highly successful school climate efforts ranging from real-time conflict resolution to positive behavior intervention,” according to a DOE statement.
Thirty-nine of the Los Angeles County schools on the list are Los Angeles Unified School District campuses.
“I am delighted to see the state recognize the progress being made at so many of our schools where extraordinary things are happening,” LAUSD Superintendent Austin Beutner said. “We are grateful for the hard work of the administrators, educators and staff for helping our students get a great education.”