COVINA – All three Covina-Valley Unified (C-VUSD) middle schools – Las Palmas Middle School, Traweek Middle School and Sierra Vista Middle School – have been recognized as 2021 California Schools to Watch, celebrating their efforts in closing the achievement gap, establishing positive learning environments and infusing technology into every aspect of learning.
All three middle schools are among 31 high-performing California middle schools to be honored this year. Traweek and Sierra Vista were first designated in 2018, while Las Palmas was first designated in 2019. All three schools were re-evaluated to retain their Schools to Watch status.
Across its 17 campuses, Covina-Valley Unified offers a variety of school-wide programs that foster student engagement and connect students to learning inside and outside the classroom.
Increasing access to technology and bolstering digital literacy have been critical cornerstones at each middle school, implementing coding into their curriculum and providing each student with a personal Chromebook.
Programs such as Where Everybody Belongs (WEB) and Multi-Tiered System of Supports (MTSS) aim to help create an atmosphere that promotes the value of kindness, inclusivity, acceptance and positive social interaction among students and staff.
Through initiatives like the Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID) program, all three middle schools have helped narrow the achievement gap and train students for rigorous high school and college curriculums. In addition, Las Palmas is one of the few middle schools in Los Angeles County recognized as an AVID National Demonstration School.
These achievements have garnered C-VUSD state and national recognition, including distinctions as a California Model District for Inclusive Practices for Special Education, California and National Forum Schools to Watch, California School of Character, California School Boards Association Golden Bell Award, multiple California Gold Ribbon and Distinguished School awards and membership in The League of Innovative Schools.
The Schools to Watch program is a collaborative effort with the California Department of Education, the California League of Schools and the California Middle Grades Alliance, in association with the National Forum to Accelerate Middle-Grades Reform.
Since 1999, the National Forum to Accelerate Middle-Grades Reform has advocated for improved academic and developmental outcomes for all middle-grade students in the United States.
“I am so proud of all of our middle schools on their redesignations as 2021 California Schools to Watch,” Covina-Valley Unified Superintendent Elizabeth Eminhizer said. “This acknowledgment demonstrates the commitment by our dedicated teachers and staff to provide the best learning experience for our students.”