CA School News

South Whittier School District

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  • 11200 Telechron Ave. • 562-944-6231
  • South Whittier School District operates five elementary schools, one 4-6 school and one middle school. The District holds students and staff to rigorous standards to prepare every scholar for 21st century success.

  • Superintendent: Gail Baxter
  • Board of Trustees: Francisco Santana, president; Jan Baird, vice president; Deborah Pacheco, clerk; Sylvia Macias, member; Elias Alvarado, member
  • 2015-16 Enrollment: 3,067

South Whittier Middle School Named AVID National Demonstration Site

South Whittier's Graves Middle School has been named a National Demonstration Site for AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination), a college-preparedness program that teaches students habits and skills integral to academic and professional success. It is one of two middle schools in Los Angeles County to earn the designation, an honor held by fewer than 3 percent of AVID schools across the nation. Launched in 2008 with one seventh-grade class, Graves’ AVID program has flourished with expanded sections and strategies that have elevated student learning, emphasized the importance of a college education and supported the academic growth of English learners. Media Contact: Juliette Funes, 909-447-2404 (office)

Lake Marie Elementary Color Run to Raise Funds for Technology

South Whittier's Lake Marie Elementary School students will walk, jog and run their way toward a healthier lifestyle while raising funds for technology during the second annual “Color Me Fun Run" from 12:15 to 1:45 p.m. Friday, April 21. The color run will feature transitional kindergarten (TK) through sixth-grade students running through obstacle courses while being splashed with every color of the rainbow by parents and teachers for each lap they complete. Organizers hope to raise $10,000 for new technology from the community fitness fundraiser. The color run will immediately follow the school’s “Lunch with a Loved One” family picnic, where families are invited to bring lunch, a blanket and a book to embrace literacy. Lake Marie is at 10001 Carmenita Road, Whittier. Media Contact: Juliette Funes, 909-447-2404 (office)

South Whittier Sixth-Graders Venture to Outdoor Science School

Follow-up Story: Sixth-graders from South Whittier School District attended class off the coast of the Pacific Ocean as part of a week-long Malibu Outdoor Science School. From March 20-24, students learned about three ecosystems with the natural environment acting as teacher. Operated by the Los Angeles County Office of Education, the outdoor school focused on state science standards, while exposing students to hands-on experiments and real-life lessons. Media Contact: Juliette Funes, 909-447-2404 (office)

South Whittier Schools to Hold Color Run Fundraisers

Three South Whittier School District schools will hold color runs in April to raise funds for programs and promote community camaraderie. McKibben Elementary School, 10550 Mills Ave., will hold its “Color Me Bully-Free” event from 3 to 5 p.m. Friday, April 7. Loma Vista Elementary School, 13463 Meyer Road, will hold its event on Monday, April 10, with kindergarteners and first-graders kicking off the event at 12:30 p.m., followed by second- and third-graders running at 12:45 p.m. and fourth- through sixth-graders running at 1 p.m. Lake Marie Elementary School, 10001 Carmenita Road, will hold its event on Friday, April 21. Media Contact: Juliette Funes, 909-447-2404 (office)

South Whittier Unified’s New Accountability Tool Provides Helpful Insight For Student Performance

The state has launched a field test of its new accountability system, the California School Dashboard, which evaluates district, school and student performances on a variety of measures, including test scores, English learner progress and parent engagement. Released on Wednesday, March 15, the Dashboard replaces the Academic Performance Index (API), an accountability system that relied almost entirely on standardized tests and gave schools a single score. It was suspended three years ago. Media Contact: Juliette Funes, 909-447-2404 (office)Read More

South Whittier Students Train Shelter Dogs as Part of Intervention Method

Follow-up Story: Ten South Whittier School District students and six shelter dogs from the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Los Angeles (spcaLA) spent the last four weeks growing a bond – one that challenged each in different ways, but resulted in a serendipitous ending for both. The Graves Middle School eighth-graders and shelter dogs graduated from spcaLA’s Teaching Love & Compassion training program on March 9, when the student trainers demonstrated tricks they taught the pups after hours of hard work and determination. This is the first year South Whittier School District participated in the hands-on dog training program, an effort designed to teach selected students leadership skills, self-motivation and self-determination. Media Contact: Juliette Funes, 909-447-2404 (office)Read More

South Whittier Students Churn Butter during Colonial Event

Follow-up Story: Monte Vista Elementary School was transformed into a colonial-era community on Feb. 24 as teachers dressed in period clothing, students churned butter and made candles, and farm animals took over the campus to demonstrate the life of an early English settler. The all-day event was part of a hands-on, interactive “living history” lesson for fourth-, fifth- and sixth-graders in the South Whittier school who are studying the American Revolution. Photos are available. Media Contact: Juliette Funes, 909-447-2404 (office)Read More Photos

South Whittier Parents Graduate from Education Program

Follow-up Story: More than 40 South Whittier School District parents who have been involved in the District’s Parent Education Program since the start of the school year were celebrated March 9 during a graduation ceremony – a first for many of the Spanish-speaking parents. The Parent Education Program is run in conjunction with Take Note Institute, a Whittier-based coaching and leadership consulting agency that focuses on biliteracy and teaching parents to support their children’s learning through workshops and other engagement opportunities. Parents were awarded for perfect attendance, completion of and participation in the program during the festive ceremony held at Graves Middle School. Media Contact: Juliette Funes, 909-447-2404 (office)Read More Photos

South Whittier Partnership Provides Free Counseling Services to Families

In partnership with Spiritt Family Services, South Whittier School District is providing families with free counseling services on a weekly basis for eight weeks. Spiritt delivers family-focused education, case management, support and counseling services. The final day of service will run from 8:45 to 11:15 a.m. Wednesday, March 8 at the South Whittier School District Office Professional Development Center, 11200 Telechron Ave., Whittier. For more information or to enroll for the next session, call Daisy Rios at 562-903-7000. Media Contact: Juliette Funes, 909-447-2404 (office)

South Whittier Seeks Input on Selection of New Superintendent

South Whittier School District is seeking input from parents, students, teachers, staff and community stakeholders on the Board of Education’s selection of a new superintendents. Participants are invited to submit their views on a survey at www.surveymonkey.com/r/BFSMPPW through Friday, March 3. The survey is available in Spanish at es.surveymonkey.com/r/B3VB36D. The information will be used to develop a profile of the professional experiences, leadership and personal characteristics the community would like to see in the District’s next superintendent. The survey also asks questions on district strengths, challenges and community values. Media Contact: Juliette Funes, 909-447-2404 (office)Read More