CA School News Report

East Whittier City School District

  • 14535 E. Whittier Blvd., Whittier CA, 90605 • 562-907-5900
  • East Whittier City School District serves students through 10 elementary schools and four middle schools. The District, in partnership with parents, endeavors to motivate, inspire, and encourage all students to use their unique potentials to reach their highest level of academic achievement and emotional and physical well-being.

  • Superintendent: Mary Branca
  • Board of Trustees: Paul Gardiner, president; Chrstine Chacon Sullivan, vice president; Armando Urteaga, clerk; Dimitri Elbling, member; Carlos Aparicio, member
  • 2015-16 Enrollment: 8,891

East Whittier Elementary Students to Visit Cal Lutheran University

As part of the Ceres Elementary School commitment to establishing a college-going culture on campus, kindergarten teacher Catherine Loomis has partnered with the Cal Lutheran University (CLU) men’s and women’s water polo teams through the CLU College Mentoring program. CLU student-athletes make regular visits to Loomis’ class to encourage students to think about attending college. In return, Loomis and her students have attended several water polo matches and dress up every Tuesday in the CLU colors of purple and yellow. The class will take a field trip to Cal Lutheran on Wednesday, April 19. Media Contact: Maritza Fairfield, 909-445-1001 (office) or 909-816-7722 (cell)Read More Photos

South Whittier Sixth-Graders Explore Ecosystems at Science School

Follow-up Story: South Whittier School District sixth-graders learned about three California ecosystems during a weeklong Malibu Outdoor Science School from March 20-24, using the environment around them as a classroom. Operated by the Los Angeles County Office of Education, the outdoor school focuses on state science standards, while exposing students to hands-on experiments and real-life lessons. Camp activities include night hikes, camp fires with songs and skits, as well as communal living. This is the first time the District sent all sixth-graders at the same time. Media Contact: Juliette Funes, 909-447-2404 (office)

East Whittier Elementary School Alumni Make Final Musical a Special Night

Follow-up Story: Celebrating 10 years of dance and family entertainment, the East Whittier community attended the final performance of the Leffingwell Elementary School Musical, a tradition that raised money for extracurricular dance and arts instruction. All grade levels at Leffingwell performed in the show, which pays tribute to Keith Songer, who died in a 2008 auto accident. Songer was the husband of Ocean View Assistant Principal Kim Songer. The theme of this year’s show was “Be A Star” and over 80 Leffingwell Elementary alumni – from grade six to college – returned to campus for a special dance performance to show their appreciation for Songer and dance instructor Rona Overbeck. Media Contact: Maritza Fairfield, 909-445-1001 (office) or 909-816-7722 (cell)

Jump-Roping East Whittier Students Raise Over $3,500 for American Heart Association.

Follow-up Story: Students at East Whittier City School District’s Orchard Dale Elementary School raised over $3,500 in donations for the American Heart Association’s Jump Rope for Heart charity, reflecting a deep commitment to pursue healthy lifestyles and give back to their communities. All students, from transitional kindergartners to fifth-graders, participated. Many families employed social media to solicit donations. Orchard Dale students staged competitions by grade level to see who had the best jump-roping skills, with toys and games awarded to those who could jump rope the longest. Media Contact: Maritza Fairfield, 909-445-1001 (office) or 909-816-7722 (cell)Read More Photos

East Whittier School Volunteer Honored for Commitment to Students

Scott Avenue Elementary School volunteer Amelia Bakshi has been named Community School Volunteer of the Year by the Whittier Area School Administrators (WASA). Each year, WASA honors volunteers from Whittier school districts. Bakshi was selected for her efforts to increase parent and community engagement and celebrate arts education. Her notable accomplishments include the expansion of Scott Avenue’s PTA Reflections art program into a gala-style community engagement event. Media Contact: Maritza Fairfield, 909-445-1001 (office) or 909-816-7722 (cell)

East Whittier City Invites Feedback on Next Superintendent during March 14 Meeting

East Whittier City School District has invited community members to provide input at 6 p.m. Tuesday, March 14 on the characteristics they’d like in the District’s next superintendent. Superintendent Mary Branca is retiring in June following a 30-year career in the district. The meeting will take place at the District Office, 14535 E. Whittier Blvd., Whittier. An online survey will be available March 13-24 on the District website at The board is expected to interview finalists and make a final selection on May 22. Media Contact: Maritza Fairfield, 909-445-1001 (office) or 909-816-7722 (cell)Read More

East Whittier City School District Appoints Bond Oversight Committee

East Whittier City School District has appointed nine members to its Independent Citizens Oversight Committee for the District’s $94 million Measure R and Measure Z facilities bond program. Composed of East Whittier parents, school volunteers, business organization members, senior citizen and taxpayer association members and community members, the committee will review and report to the community on bond spending. Media Contact: Maritza Fairfield, 909-445-1001 (office) or 909-816-7722 (cell)Read More

East Whittier Parents, Teachers Connect at Symposium

Follow-up Story: More than 150 parents, principals, and teachers from each of the East Whittier City School District’s 13 schools on Feb. 10 shared perspectives on teaching students during the District’s first-ever parent-teacher symposium. Speakers at the standing-room only event included State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson and state Sen. Anthony Mendoza, 32nd District. Media Contact: Maritza Fairfield, 909-445-1001 (office) or 909-816-7722 (cell)

East Whittier Middle School Principal Announces Retirement

Wendy Davio, principal at East Whittier School District’s Hillview Middle School, has announced that she will retire at the end of the 2016-17 school year. During her eight years at Hillview, Davio and a committee of teachers created Helpful Husky Families, a parent volunteer group that helped build a positive, supportive culture which encouraged all students to be high achievers, take pride in their school and their appearance and respect one another. They also developed a code of behavior called PACK: Prepared, Attitude, Capable and Kind. Media Contact: Maritza Fairfield, 909-445-1001 (office) or 909-816-7722 (cell)Read More Photos

East Whittier City Elementary Music Expansion Hits All the Right Notes

East Whittier City fifth-graders are singing the praises over the District’s decision to expand visual and performing arts programs to elementary school classrooms. The District is providing more than 900 fifth-graders with weekly piano instruction so students can learn the basics of reading music. The curriculum prepares them for advanced music instruction at the District’s middle schools. A funding priority in the District’s 2016-17 Local Control and Accountability Plan, the music program provides a music teacher to serve East Whittier City’s 10 elementary schools. Media Contact: Maritza Fairfield, 909-445-1001 (office) or 909-816-7722 (cell)