COVINA, CA – Covina High School and Las Palmas Middle School have been named 2024 California Distinguished Schools by the California Department of Education, showcasing Covina-Valley Unified School District’s dedication to providing students with the best possible education that helps them realize their unlimited potential.

Recognizing only 293 schools this year, the California Distinguished School Award is a prestigious honor for high-achieving schools that have proven to demonstrate exceptional student performance and dedication to closing achievement gaps.

“It’s such a massive honor for our staff, students, and community to receive such a distinguished award,” Covina High principal Dr. Daisy Carrasco said. “There has been so much intentional focus and great work from everyone, and we’re so proud to see all that work come to fruition. Covina High is so special because everyone feels like they belong here and are part of a family – we are Colt Nation strong!”

Covina High School offers students the chance to participate in many unique programs, including the California School Boards Association Golden Bell award-winning Agriculture and Animal Science career technical education (CTE) programs, an Engineering CTE pathway in partnership with Project Lead the Way, and a new Aviation/Aerospace program coming soon. The school will also expand its dual enrollment offerings in the 2024-25 school year, giving students the chance to earn college credits while in high school.

Las Palmas Middle School also provides students with robust academic opportunities, including a Spanish Dual Language Immersion program, drone robotics and coding elective offerings, and a strong Advancement Via Individual Determination program. The school also offers the Where Everyone Belongs program, a mentoring and leadership opportunity for eighth graders to help younger students succeed in middle school.

“Receiving this recognition serves as a testament to the commitment of our staff to providing quality education and support to our students and families,” Las Palmas Principal Dr. Roy Umana said. “It is the combination of a student-centered culture, dedicated staff, and supportive community that sets Las Palmas Middle School apart and makes it such a special place for learning and growth.”

This marks the first year that both Covina High School and Las Palmas Middle School have been named a California Distinguished School.

“We are honored that two of our incredible school sites were selected for this amazing achievement,” Superintendent Dr. Elizabeth Eminhizer said. “Thank you to all of our outstanding teachers, staff, administrators, and students for your tireless work in making Covina-Valley Unified a standout District. Congratulations to Covina High and Las Palmas Middle School.”

As 2024 California Distinguished Schools, representatives from Covina High and Las Palmas Middle School attended the California School Recognition Program Awards Ceremony at the Disneyland Hotel in Anaheim on May 3.


CVUSD_DISTINGUISHED1: A Las Palmas Middle School student poses with her new teacher on the first day of school. Las Palmas Middle School was one of 293 schools named a 2024 California Distinguished School by the California Department of Education.

CVUSD_DISTINGUISHED2: Covina High School seniors walk at their graduation ceremony in June 2023. Covina High School was named a 2024 California Distinguished School for demonstrating exceptional student performance and closing achievement gaps.