CA School News Report

Whittier Union High School District

  • 9401 S. Painter Ave., Whittier, CA 90605 • (562) 698-8121
  • Whittier Union High School District, formed in 1900, operates five comprehensive high schools, one continuation school, one alternative studies program and one adult school.

  • Superintendent: Martin Plourde
  • Board of Trustees: Tim Schneider, president; Dr. Ralph S. Pacheco, vice president; Russell Castañeda-Calleros, clerk; Jeff Baird, member; Leighton Anderson, member

Posthumous Diploma to be Awarded to Family of La Serna High Student

The parents of Jeremy St. Julian, a La Serna High School senior who died the night before he was set to graduate, will be presented with their son’s diploma during the Whittier Union High School District Board of Trustees meeting at 7 p.m. Tuesday, July 11 at the Sierra Education Center, 9401 S. Painter Ave., Whittier. La Serna Principal Ann Fitzgerald will certify that St. Julian met the requirements for the diploma and Board of Trustees President Tim Schneider will accept the certification of behalf of the board. St. Julian’s parents, Engel and Sharvonita Thedford, will accept the diploma and be invited to speak. St. Julian 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)

Whittier Union Set to Launch Redesigned Website

Whittier Union High School District on Friday, June 30 launched a sleek and modern website to provide students, staff, parents and community members easy access to resources and information. The redesigned District homepage and school pages can be accessed on tablets and mobile phones. The website includes content areas for news and announcements, a calendar of events, and information on the Local Control and Accountability Plan and state funding system. Whittier Union partnered with Edlio, an education website developer, to enhance the website and integrate features and tools that matter most to District stakeholders. Media Contact: Juliette Funes, 909-447-2404 (office)Read More Photos

Whittier Union Names Attorney-turned-Cal High Educator 2017-18 Teacher of the Year

Follow-up Story: Before becoming an English teacher at California High School, Lori Davies spent 12 years as a corporate lawyer, analyzing writs, combing over legal briefs and winning cases for her clients. But it was her passion for transforming the lives of students through teaching that led her to transition from the courtroom to the classroom. Now after 15 years as an educator, Davies is equally successful at administering exams, reviewing common assessments and teaching the works of Steinbeck while guiding students on their path to college and growing the school’s acclaimed Puente academic support program. For her dedication, Davies has been named Whittier Union High School District’s 2017-18 Teacher of the Year. Media Contact: Juliette Funes, 909-447-2404 (office)Read More Photos

Whittier Union Celebrates Nearly 3,000 Graduates

Follow-up Story: Nearly 3,000 students from the Whittier Union High School District’s five comprehensive high schools, two alternative high schools, adult school and transition program celebrated the end of their high school careers and beginning of the next chapter of their lives at commencement ceremonies June 5-7. Whittier Union’s graduates will be attending state and national universities, including Harvard, Stanford, USC, UCLA, UC Berkeley and other colleges within both the University of California and California State University systems. Media Contact: Valerie Martinez, Juliette Funes 909-447-2404Read More Photos

Frontier High School Celebrates 50 Years of Fostering Student Achievement

Follow-up Story: Frontier High School celebrated its golden anniversary with a field day for students and a reunion of former principals who reminisced about their years leading Whittier Union’s continuation school to help students overcome challenges to reach their dreams. Former administrators who attended the May 5 event included Gabe Moorman, Tom Roberts, Carlye Olsen and inaugural principal Merv Bloom. Frontier High, a six-time Model Continuation School, provides alternative education services to students in grades 10 to 12 who are behind in credits or need a more flexible schedule. Media Contact: Juliette Funes, 909-447-2404 (office)

Whittier Union Student Shakes Off Injury to Become Campus Leader

Whittier Union student Nestor Jurado grew up with a love for competitive sports and a dream of playing professional soccer. However, his ambitious goal of playing eight sports in two years was sidelined during his sophomore year at California High School, when he had knee surgery. Devastated over the setback and faced with a long rehabilitation period, Jurado in summer 2016 enrolled at Sierra Vista High School, the District’s independent study program. Determined to direct his boundless energy toward academics and graduate a year early, Jurado hit the ground running, completing his credits, studying hard and taking on new classes as quickly as possible. He is poised to graduate in June with a 3.5 GPA. Media Contact: Juliette Funes, 909-447-2404 (office)

4 Santa Fe High Seniors Named Dell Scholars, Awarded $80,000

Four Santa Fe High School seniors who have juggled personal challenges with academic excellence are celebrating their selection as 2017 Dell Scholars, receiving $20,000 apiece in scholarships for their post-secondary education. Jesus Muneton will attend UCLA to pursue chemical engineering; Isaac Zarate is heading to UC Irvine to study political science; Nicolas Mabey will study business at UCLA; and Angie Torres will explore math at UC San Diego. Media Contact: Juliette Funes, 909-447-2404 (office)

La Serna Student Takes Top Prize in 38th District Congressional Art Contest

La Serna High School junior Elizabeth Islas will venture to Washington D.C. to see her award-winning drawing on display in the U.S. Capitol after taking the top prize at the 38th District for the 2017 Congressional Art Competition. The national contest recognizes and encourages artistic talent among high schoolers from across the country. Islas on April 13 was awarded best overall work for her piece, “A Form of Expression,” by U.S. Rep. Linda Sanchez. Media Contact: Media contact: Juliette Funes, 909-447-2404 (office)

Whittier Union Student Earns Recognition for Academic Turnaround

When Janice Palapa enrolled at Frontier High School as a junior in August 2016, she was far behind in her school credits, in low spirits and planned to stay only for as long as it took her to get back on track to graduate. Since then, Palapa has marched in the 2017 Rose Bowl Parade as a Gold Award Girl Scout, joined the school’s Associated Student Body and Soroptimist student club, and serves as a student representative on Frontier’s Site Council and LCAP Advisory Board, all while earning a year’s worth of credits in one semester. Now, Palapa will walk as an FHS class of 2018 graduate. The military-bound student was recognized by the District with an Award of Merit on April 11. Media Contact: Media contact: Juliette Funes, 909-447-2404 (office)Read More Photos