CA School News Report

Coming This Week

December 8–16, 2017

Baldwin Park Unified Bands Score Strong Fall Seasons

Marching bands at Baldwin Park and Sierra Vista high schools have concluded one of their strongest fall performance seasons yet, collecting awards at field shows across the area and performing in a variety of public venues. The bands will cap the season with performances at Disneyland – Sierra Vista on Tuesday, Dec. 12 and Baldwin Park on Friday, Jan. 26. Baldwin Park High School’s band started the season by performing at the Los Angeles County Fair on Sept. 14 before moving into the competitive marching band season. The team, which has 128 musicians and 20 students in color guard competed at Rowland, Sierra Vista, Los Altos and Savanna high school field show tournaments. At the Sierra Vista field show, Baldwin Park took the overall sweepstakes and the percussion sweepstakes awards. Sierra Vista High School’s band – about 130 students strong – earned a first-place award for band and third place for color guard at the Baldwin Park High School field show, and first places for band, percussion and color guard at the Duarte tournament. Both bands also performed at public events, including Baldwin Park’s annual city parade. Sierra Vista performed at the Covina Christmas Parade as well as at USC’s annual band day. Media Contact: William Diepenbrock, 909-206-5304 (office) or 909-214-6909 (cell)Read More Photos

Baldwin Park Unified Schools Collect Canned Goods for City Food Baskets

Baldwin Park Unified schools are accepting donations of canned goods through Wednesday, Dec. 13 as part of the City of Baldwin Park’s Christmas Food Basket Program, which provides food to residents in need. The city will distribute baskets on Saturday, Dec. 16 to the first 400 families to fill out applications. For information on how to help or to obtain an application, go to www.baldwinpark.com. Media Contact: William Diepenbrock, 909-206-5304 (office) or 909-214-6909 (cell)Read More

20 Lynwood Unified Fifth-Graders to Compete in Conga Kids Finals

Twenty Lynwood Unified elementary students will don their dancing shoes for the Conga Kids final competition from 5 to 7 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 13 at Esteban Torres High School, 4211 Dozier St., Los Angeles. Conga Kids is a nonprofit arts-in-education charitable foundation that features partner dancing in merengue, swing, salsa, tango and foxtrot. About 60 students competed in the program’s semi-final contest on Nov. 30 at the Lynwood High School Performing Arts Center. Photos are available Media Contact: Jahmal Corner, 909-445-1001 (office)

Baldwin Park High School to Hold First-Ever Multicultural Holiday Celebration

Baldwin Park High School will host its first-ever Posada de Unidad, a multicultural celebration of holiday traditions from around the world, from 5 to 7 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 14 at the high school gymnasium, 3900 Puente Ave., Baldwin Park. Organized by four students in the school’s Dual Language Immersion program, the festival will feature a procession, or posada, through at least 19 booths set up by school clubs and organizations. Each booth will focus on a different holiday tradition, offering displays and activities for participants. The event will also include piñatas, performances by the school’s marching band, jazz band and choir, as well as tamburazo and cumbia music. Media Contact: William Diepenbrock, 909-206-5304 (office) or 909-214-6909 (cell)Read More

Follow-up Stories

El Monte Union Installs 21 Electric Vehicle Charging Stations, 18 More Planned

El Monte Union High School District has installed 21 electric vehicle charging stations at three campuses. In partnership with Southern California Edison, the District constructed seven charging stations each at Rosemead, Arroyo and Mountain View high schools. The District plans to build 18 more stations at El Monte and South El Monte high schools. The stations are available to EMUHSD staff and students. Media Contact: Juliette Funes, 909-447-2404 (officeRead More Photos

Paramount Unified Named to 2018 Advanced Placement Honor Roll

Paramount Unified School District was named to the 2018 Advanced Placement Honor Roll on Dec. 6 for boosting access to AP courses to a broader number of students while maintaining or improving AP exam passing rates. The College Board, which awards the honor, recognized just 34 California districts and 447 districts across the U.S. and Canada Media Contact: Jahmal Corner, 909-445-1001 (office)Read More Photos

Monrovia Unified Third-Grader to Raise $5,000 for Children’s Hospital

Bradoaks Elementary School third-grader Hannah Iler is selling Hannah’s Hound Houses, kits of dog treats, rawhide and peanut butter to make canine-friendly gingerbread houses. Her goal is to raise $5,000 to buy toys and gifts for patients at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles and to support pet needs at the Humane Society. The amount is double what she raised last year. Hannah was inspired to give back to the community after spending time in the hospital for jaw reconstruction surgery last year. Photos are available Media Contact: Nancy Yeang, 909-445-1001 (office) or 909-331-6646 (cell)

Rio Hondo College Fire Crew Activated to Assist U.S. Forest Service

Rio Hondo College Fire Crew 77 rotated into action this week to help U.S. Forest Service firefighters battle a series of wildfires that sprang up this week. The 16-member crew, known as the Roadrunners, started working on the Creek Fire near Sylmar at 3:30 a.m. Dec. 5 and is expected to be in service for at least a week. The crew aids with all aspects of fire monitoring, suppression and control. Media Contact: William Diepenbrock, 909-206-5304 (office) or 909-214-6909 (cell)Read More

Baldwin Park Unified Board of Education Names 2018 Officers

Baldwin Park Unified’s Board of Education on Dec. 5 named Teresa I. Vargas as board president and Diana E. Dzib as board clerk/vice president for 2018. Vargas was elected to the board in 2009. She served as president in 2015 and as clerk/vice president in 2011 and 2017. Board Member Santos Hernandez, Jr. was selected during the meeting as the board’s 2018 representative on the Los Angeles County School Trustees Association. Hernandez and Vargas also will serve on the Community Collaborative Committee. Board Member Christina Lucero, who served as president in 2016 and 2017, will represent the board on the Los Angeles County Committee on School District Organization and the East San Gabriel Valley Regional Occupational Program. The Board of Education’s fifth seat, recently vacated, will be filled through appointment on Dec. 11. Media Contact: William Diepenbrock, 909-206-5304 (office) or 909-214-6909 (cell)Read More Photos

Santana’s Andy Vargas Sings Praises for San Ysidro Music Education

Andy Vargas, the lead singer of legendary rock group Santana, discussed the importance of music in schools with Vista Del Mar Middle School students during an inspirational assembly on Dec. 7. Vargas shared the story of how his music career began and performed a song he wrote. Video and Photos are available Media Contact: Katie Rucke, 858-371-4260(office) Video

Bassett Unified Hosts Area High School Leadership Symposium

A circle of six high school leadership students volleyed a bag stuffed with five air-filled balloons to each other until a fist-sized balloon filled with bleach was added to the mix, sinking the bag and making the game suddenly difficult – illustrating how a little negativity spoils everyone’s efforts. Roddy Layton, a Pomona Unified School District administrator, led the exercise for students from Bassett High and five other area high schools during the Miramonte League Leadership Symposium at Bassett High on Nov. 9. Media Contact: Nancy Yeang, 909-445-1001 (office) or 909-331-6646 (cell)Read More Photos

Monrovia Unified Offers Parent Program Guaranteeing Cal State University Priority Admission for Students

Alicia Bedolla has two children at Monrovia High and wanted to help them pursue higher education, but was unfamiliar with the university system and the steps to get there. Bedolla is now confident she can help her children succeed thanks to the Parent Institute for Quality Education (PIQE) program. She graduated from her third year in the program on Nov. 28, guaranteeing priority admission to all California State Universities for her children as long as they meet entry requirements. Media Contact: Nancy Yeang, 909-445-1001 (office) or 909-331-6646 (cell)Read More Photos

Lynwood Unified’s School Board President Named to Instructional Quality Commission

Lynwood Unified Board of Education President Alma-Delia Renteria has been appointed to the Instructional Quality Commission (IQC), a group of educators who advise the State Board of Education on matters related to curriculum and instruction. Renteria was appointed by our Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon of the 63rd District. She has spent more than six years filling various roles in several school districts, including spending time as a math and science teacher, English instructor, and a digital learning coach. She currently writes for an education blog, La Comadre, and has served on the Lynwood Unified Board of Education since 2013. Media Contact: Jahmal Corner, 909-445-1001 (office)Read More Photos

Baldwin Park Elementary to be Featured in Rod Dixon Documentary

Cameras rolled this fall as 38 students from Baldwin Park Unified’s Vineland Elementary stretched and jogged alongside 1972 Olympic medalist Rod Dixon for a documentary on his life and campaign to inspire healthy living. Vineland students joined the effort when in 2016-17 they signed on as part of Rod Dixon’s Kids Marathon, an international program that teaches the benefits of regular exercise and engenders a passion for running. Students learn about the importance of nutrition and run roughly a mile a week, completing in stages a marathon’s 26.2 miles. The documentary is expected to feature interviews with student runners, principal and co-coach Dr. Laura Rodriguez and co-coach Marisol Lazaro, as well as shots of the school’s entrance. Media Contact: William Diepenbrock, 909-206-5304 (office) or 909-214-6909 (cell)Read More Photos

Firebaugh High Students Spread Joy, Community Service through Helping Hands Club

Around 35 Firebaugh High School students joined community members in delivering more than 200 care packages to homeless shelters on Thanksgiving Day. The students worked to put together the packages, which included food and personal hygiene items. The participating students are members of the school’s Helping Hand club, which does charitable work throughout the year. Photos are available Media Contact: Jahmal Corner, 909-445-1001 (office)Read More

Fontana Unified’s Date Elementary School Celebrates 20th Anniversary

More than 800 students, parents, teachers and District staff members attended Date Elementary School’s 20th anniversary celebration on Dec. 1, which featured a temporary tattoo and face-painting booth and a variety of games, including tic-tac-toe, musical chairs and bolo toss. Media Contact: Lauren Creiman, 909-833-9853 (office)

Monrovia Unified Robotics Teams Dominate in First Round of Competition

More than 800 students, parents, teachers and District staff members attended Date Elementary School’s 20th anniversary celebration on Dec. 1, which featured a temporary tattoo and face-painting booth and a variety of games, including tic-tac-toe, musical chairs and bolo toss. Media Contact: Lauren Creiman, 909-833-9853 (office)

Upcoming Events

Fontana Unified to Host 20th Annual Fontana Santas Toy Giveaway

Fontana Unified School District, Fontana School Police and community partners will provide holiday gifts to nearly 450 FUSD families during the 20th annual Fontana Santas event from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday, Dec. 16 at Jurupa Hills High School, 10700 Oleander Ave., Fontana. School police officers will also deliver gifts to neighboring homes during the event, which will feature family-friendly games. Media Contact: Lauren Creiman, 909-833-9853 (office)

Baldwin Park Unified High School Band, Choir to Perform during CHiPs for Kids Toy Drive

About 150 student musicians from Baldwin Park Unified’s Sierra Vista High School band and choir will perform as part of the California Highway Patrol’s annual CHiPs for Kids Toy Drive from 4 to 5 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 20 at Plaza West Covina, 428 Plaza Drive, West Covina . The event is the final of five daylong toy collections held over three weeks. Media Contact: William Diepenbrock, 909-206-5304 (office) or 909-214-6909 (cell)Read More

12 Whittier Union Students Gear Up to Perform in 2018 Tournament of Roses Parade

Twelve Whittier Union High students are perfecting their marching band and musical skills as they prepare to perform in the 129th Tournament of Roses Parade on Monday, Jan 1, 2018. Seven marching band and five color guard members will join more than 160 high school musicians from across Southern California to represent their schools in the Tournament of Roses Honor Band. Performers are: (California High) Edith Garcia, Lauren Hernandez, Jennifer Nieto and Maricruz Villalobos, color guard; and Rocio Vega, trombone; (La Serna) Avery Smith, saxophone, and John Ye Lee, baritone; (Santa Fe) Carlo Bonelli and Jose Salcedo, both on trombone; and (Whittier High) Jacob Cortes, baritone; Nina Roa, flute; and Ava Sanchez, color guard. Media Contact: Juliette Funes, 909-447-2404 (office)Read More Photos

San Ysidro School District Offers Free Computer Classes for Parents

The San Ysidro School District, in partnership with the Sweetwater Union High School District’s San Ysidro Adult School, will offer free computer classes starting Wednesday, Jan. 10 for all levels of learners. Classes will run from 10:15 a.m.-12:15 p.m. Mondays and Wednesdays at San Ysidro Adult School, 4220 Otay Mesa Road, San Ysidro. Media Contact: Katie Rucke, 858-371-4260(office)

Fontana Unified Teacher Named CLHS Educator of the Year Finalist

Jurupa Hills High School teacher Dr. Ruzanna Hernandez was named a Region 10 finalist for the California League of High Schools’ (CLHS) Educator of the Year Award. Region 10 includes Inyo, Mono, Riverside and San Bernardino counties. Regional winners are considered for a state Educator of the Year award. The Region 10 winner will be named at 5 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2018 at the Ontario Airport Hotel & Conference Center, 700 N. Haven Ave., Ontario. Media Contact: Lauren Creiman, 909-833-9853 (office)

El Monte Union Hosts Cash for College Workshops

El Monte Union High School District will hold the last in a series of Cash for College workshops to help students and families fill out financial aid applications on Thursday, Jan. 25 at Fernando Ledesma High School. Attendees can get help completing FAFSA and California Dream Act applications. Media Contact: Juliette Funes, 909-447-2404 (officeRead More

Lynwood Unified Announces Districtwide Art Contest with $1,000 Scholarship

Lynwood Unified is channeling its commitment to the arts and a community spirit by launching a Districtwide art contest open to students from grades one to 12 that will reward the winner with a $1,000 scholarship. The art contest, which will have no restrictions on style or size, is accepting submissions from now until April 1. The scholarship money will be drawn from donations provided by local Lynwood businesses. Media Contact: Jahmal Corner, 909-445-1001 (office)Read More Photos