CA School News Report

Coming This Week

July 14–22, 2017

Lynwood Unified Elementary Students’ Original Play to be Performed in Africa

Fifteen Abbott Elementary School students will soon be globally known for their playwriting talents when a Rwandan children’s group performs their play at the Ubumuntu Arts Festival on Friday, July 14. The play, called “The Wall,” is set 364 years in the future when neighboring families decide to end their prejudiced ideologies and tear down a wall commissioned by President Donald Trump. The play is one of 76 productions created by Lynwood Unified’s elementary and middle school students as part of the Building Relationships and Inspiring Dialogue through Global Exchange (BRIDGE) Theatre Project. Photos are available Media Contact: Jahmal Corner, 909-445-1001 (office)Read More Photos

Rio Hondo College Offers Guidance to New Students at Welcome Days

Rio Hondo College will provide financial aid information and support guidance for new students during Freshman Welcome Days, held from 8 a.m. to noon Monday, July 10, Tuesday, July 11 and Tuesday, Aug. 1 at the Rio Café, 3600 Workman Mill Road. The event, which will also include information on transferring to a four-year university, is provided by the College’s First Year Success Center. Register online at http://bit.ly/rhcwelcome2017. Call 562-463-6650 or email firstyear@riohondo.edu for more information. Media Contact: William Diepenbrock, 909-206-5304 (office) or 909-214-6909 (cell)

Lynwood Students Learn STEAM at Girls Pursuing Science Camp

Around 30 Lynwood Unified female students in grades four to eight are experiencing the joys of science at the weeklong Girls Pursuing Science (GPS) Camp, which ends Friday, July 14 at Hosler Middle School, 11300 Spruce St., Lynwood. GPS founder Jacquelyn Thomas is leading a Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math (STEAM) curriculum that allows students to create cosmetic products and brand their own businesses. Photos are available Media Contact: Jahmal Corner, 909-445-1001 (office)

Baldwin Park Unified Connects with Community via Facebook Page

Baldwin Park Unified launched an official Facebook page on July 17, adding a new channel to strengthen communications with local families and community members. The page provides up-to-date news about academic programs and student support services. The page works in concert with the District website, its innovative mobile application, email news distribution and quarterly printed newsletters to keep the community informed. Media Contact: William Diepenbrock, 909-206-5304 (office) or 909-214-6909 (cell)Read More Photos

Baldwin Park Unified Bolsters Support to Raise Student Success in 2017-18

Baldwin Park Unified will redouble its focus on academic success in 2017-18, restructuring leadership and coaching teams at 13 elementary and four middle/junior high schools to bolster support for teachers. Nine new elementary school assistant principals and 17 curriculum, technology and intervention (CTI) coaches will replace and augment the efforts of the District’s former team of 17 resource teachers, who handled a mix of classroom support and select administrative tasks. The assistant principals will free elementary school principals to take a stronger role in overseeing instructional quality. The CTI coaches will focus on improving student outcomes at elementary and middle schools. Media Contact: William Diepenbrock, 909-206-5304 (office) or 909-214-6909 (cell)Read More

Five Lynwood Student Athletes to Compete in California State Games

Five Lynwood Unified student athletes are set to compete at the California State Games track and field competition from Saturday, July 15 to Sunday, July 16 at Olympian High School, 1925 Magdalena Ave., Chula Vista. José Valdez, Jannin Vilchis, Alexis Galindo, Daniela Ruvalcaba and Juvenal Barajas earned their spots in the Games for their performances at a qualifier meet in May and the Southern California Municipal Athletic Federation (SCMAF) Championship meet in June. Media Contact: Jahmal Corner, 909-445-1001 (office)

Rio Hondo College’s New Vice President for Finance Brings 24 Years of Experience in Community College Fiscal Management

Rio Hondo College’s new vice president for finance and business brings more than 24 years of working for California community colleges in finance and fiscal management. Yulian I. Ligioso, who starts his new post on July 24, most recently served for six years as vice president for finance and administration for Solano Community College District. The post included budget development and finance administration as well as a broad range of administrative concerns, including oversight of bond construction, information technology, campus police, and service on campus negotiating teams. While at Solano, Ligioso helped secure $12.3 million in federal funds for a 2.5 megawatt solar farm and implemented other energy initiatives, saving the District about $1 million a year and securing rebates of $1.2 million. Media Contact: William Diepenbrock, 909-206-5304 (office) or 909-214-6909 (cell)Read More Photos

San Gabriel Unified Graduate Beats Adversity to Pursue College

Facing extreme hardship and homelessness, Del Mar Continuation High graduate Kenneth French beat all odds, refusing to let adversity hold him back from the future he desired. After earning a 3.8 GPA and a 100 percent attendance rate his senior year, he is beginning a new chapter this fall as a freshman at Pasadena City College to pursue a career in medicine or law. Media Contact: Lauren Creiman, 909-833-9853 (office)Read More Photos

Baldwin Park to Expand All-Day Preschool Options in Fall

Baldwin Park Unified will expand an all-day preschool program to 80 additional students in four new classrooms in fall 2017 under the provisions of a $2.8 million federal grant. The expansion, which will launch in October, will allow the District to serve 195 students with the 8 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. all-day program, including 20 students in the District’s second preschool Spanish dual-language immersion classroom. Baldwin Park Unified serves 1,400 Early Childhood Education students, with most attending either an 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. morning session or a 12:30 to 3 p.m. afternoon session. A pilot effort in 2016-17 offered all-day service in six classrooms, which sparked great interest in the option among parents. Media Contact: William Diepenbrock, 909-206-5304 (office) or 909-214-6909 (cell)Read More

Azusa Unified to Offer Free Meals to Children During Summer Months

Azusa Unified School District will offer free lunches this summer to children ages 18 and under through the federal Summer Food Service program. Lunches will be served from noon to 12:30 p.m. Monday through Friday through July 28 at school campuses and public parks. Meals are available to any child residing within Azusa Unified boundaries. Call Nutrition Services at 626-732-8057 for specific locations and times. Media Contact: Mark Vidal, 909-447-2406 (office) or 626-203-8167 (cell)Read More

Follow-up Stories

East Whittier City Board Approves $85 Million 2017-20 LCAP Spending Plan

The East Whittier City School District Board of Education approved the $85 million Local Control and Accountability Plan (LCAP) on June 19, reaffirming the District’s commitment to bolstering student achievement by updating classroom technology, reducing class sizes, and increasing funding for Visual and Performing Arts (VAPA) programs. The LCAP highlights significant gains among all students in English language arts and math during the 2016-17 school year. The increases are credited to funds allocated for after-school student support and extra class periods provided in the previous year’s LCAP. Media Contact: Maritza Fairfield, 909-445-1001 (office) or 909-816-7722 (cell)

Monrovia Unified Board of Education Approves 2017-20 LCAP

Monrovia Unified School District will invest more than $6 million during the 2017-18 school year to provide better classroom instruction for student achievement in math, improve literacy rates, and ensure all of its schools are welcoming and comprehensive for students and parents as part of the 2017-20 Local Control and Accountability Plan (LCAP). The Board of Education voted to approve the LCAP on June 28. Media Contact: Nancy Yeang, 909-445-1001 (office) or 909-331-6646 (cell)

Paramount Unified Administrators, Faculty, Students Attend AVID Institute

Nearly 100 Paramount Unified School District administrators, faculty and staff attended the Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID) Summer Institute held in Anaheim from July 5-7. The District has been phasing in the college preparatory study elective over the last three years to encompass all four PUSD middle schools as well as ninth- and tenth-grade students at Paramount High School. At the AVID Summer Institute, teachers attend specialized classes, or strands, to learn how to best implement the program in their classrooms. Four students from Jackson Middle School were selected to make presentations on how AVID has helped them with their study, organizational and critical thinking skills. Media Contact: Jahmal Corner, 909-445-1001 (office)

Summer Academy Drives Middle School Students to Pursue Careers in Medicine and Engineering

Fifty-four Bassett Unified seventh- and eighth-grade students spent a month gaining skills and learning about job opportunities in the engineering and medical fields during the District’s middle school summer academy. The program culminated with a showcase for parents on July 7 at Bassett High School, when each student earned a certificate signifying their competence in concepts and skills learned through the program. Media Contact: Nancy Yeang, 909-445-1001 (office) or 909-331-6646 (cell)Read More Photos

Baldwin Park Unified, University of La Verne Partner to Ensure College Admission

Baldwin Park Unified’s Superintendent Froilan N. Mendoza solidified a partnership with the University of La Verne on July 20 that ensures students have access to a top-quality, affordable college education. The Partnership for Access to College Education (PACE) promises qualified Baldwin Park students a pathway to the University of La Verne that includes guaranteed admission, financial aid, application fee waivers and a variety of programs to assist with college readiness. Baldwin Park Unified joins 22 other Southern California school districts in partnering with the University of La Verne, with representatives from the university and the school districts pledging their efforts to make higher education obtainable for every student. The District’s graduation rate reached 93 percent in 2015-16, and Baldwin Park Unified educators are working to increase the number of those graduates who attend four-year universities. Media Contact: William Diepenbrock, 909-206-5304 (office) or 909-214-6909 (cell)Read More Photos

Whittier Union Awards Posthumous Diploma to High School Grad’s Family

The parents of Jeremy St. Julian, a La Serna High School senior who died the night before he was set to graduate, were presented with their son’s diploma during the Whittier Union High School District Board of Trustees meeting July 11. La Serna Principal Ann Fitzgerald certified that St. Julian met the requirements for the diploma and Board of Trustees President Tim Schneider accepted the certification on behalf of the board. St. Julian’s parents, Engel and Sharvonita Thedford, accepted the diploma with their daughter. The 18-year-old varsity football player died in a June 6 hiking accident in the Chantry Flat area of the Angeles National Forest. Media Contact: Juliette Funes, 909-447-2404 (office)

San Gabriel Unified Elementary School Adds After-School Mandarin Language Class

San Gabriel Unified’s Mandarin language enrichment program, which aims to increase cultural understanding while teaching bilingual skills, will add a class for second- and third-grade students in fall. The program, held at McKinley Elementary School, will serve 15 students in second and third grade and 15 students in fourth and fifth grade. Visit www.mckinley.sgusd.k12.ca.us for enrollment information. Media Contact: Lauren Creiman, 909-833-9853 (office)Read More

Van Wig Students Hone Reading and Math Skills with ‘Breakfast Club’ Computer Programs

Popular “Breakfast Club” morning computer lab sessions at Bassett Unified’s Van Wig Elementary School have been continued into the summer session as an afternoon activity, allowing dozens of students and their parents to bolster their English and mathematics skills. Using specialized tutorial programs like Prodigy, Lexia Core 5 and ST Math, the “Breakfast Club” helps students performing under grade level as well as those who are looking for extra practice. Photos are available Media Contact: Nancy Yeang, 909-445-1001 (office) or 909-331-6646 (cell)Read More Photos

Upcoming Events

Rio Hondo College to Host 100 Seventh-graders from Area Schools for Summer CTE Academy

About 100 area seventh-graders will assemble car engines, build radios, craft bridges, learn First Aid and CPR, and explore the potential of 3-D printing from Monday, July 17 to Friday, July 21 during Rio Hondo College’s seventh annual CTE Academy. The program allows students from area school districts to explore science and technology career fields under the supervision of a cadre of Rio Hondo College instructors and students in Rio Hondo College’s Career and Technical Education (CTE) program. The academy runs from 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Monday through Friday at the College’s hilltop campus, 3600 N. Workman Mill Road, Whittier. Media Contact: William Diepenbrock, 909-206-5304 (office) or 909-214-6909 (cell)Read More

Rio Hondo Holds 7th Annual CTE Academy for Middle School Students

About 100 area seventh-graders will assemble car engines, build radios, craft bridges, learn First Aid and CPR, and explore 3-D printing from Monday, July 17 to Friday, July 21 during Rio Hondo College’s seventh annual Career and Technical Education (CTE) Academy. The program allows students from area school districts to explore science and technology career fields under the supervision of a cadre of Rio Hondo College instructors and students in Rio Hondo CTE program. The academy runs from 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Monday through Friday at the College’s hilltop campus, 3600 N. Workman Mill Road, Whittier. Media Contact: William Diepenbrock, 909-206-5304 (office) or 909-214-6909 (cell)

Baldwin Park to Celebrate ULV Partnership at July 20 Event

Baldwin Park Unified officials will attend a University of La Verne signing ceremony from 8:30 to 11 a.m. Thursday, July 20 for the college’s Partnership for Access to College Education (PACE) program, which provides guaranteed admission and financial aid to qualified graduates of participating high schools. Baldwin Park is one of more than a dozen area school districts to join the PACE program, which was launched Jan. 19. PACE waives application fees, offers access to college preparatory courses and offers at least $10,000 in annual financial aid. The signing event is at ULV’s Abraham Campus Center, 2000 2nd St., La Verne. Media Contact: William Diepenbrock, 909-206-5304 (office) or 909-214-6909 (cell)Read More

Rio Hondo Offers Orientation for Families with New College Students

Rio Hondo College will brief families of new students at its First Year Family Night about financial aid, student resources and how they can support their children. The orientation program runs from 5:30 to 8 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 10 at the College, 3600 Workman Mill Road. The evening is one of several events designed to support first year students who are enrolled for fall 2017 in six or more units. A light dinner will be provided. Register at bit.ly/firstyearfam17, 562-463-6650 or firstyear@riohondo.edu. Media Contact: William Diepenbrock, 909-206-5304 (office) or 909-214-6909 (cell)