April 23, 2004
An unprecedented 11 elementary schools in the Long Beach Unified School District won the California Distinguished School Award this week. Only Los Angeles -- at eight times the size of Long Beach – earned as many awards.
Winners in the Long Beach area are Alvarado, Cubberley, Keller, Kettering, Longfellow, Lowell, Naples, Roosevelt, Signal Hill, Stevenson and Tucker schools.
Each school competed in rigorous selection and screening conducted by the California Department of Education. The state named finalists after reviewing extensive, detailed applications and sending a team of educators to visit and evaluate each campus. Each winning school is now qualified to apply for the prestigious National Blue Ribbon Award.
To earn the top California school award, a school must demonstrate:
· High academic expectations for all students
· Achievement levels at and above state standards
· Strong leadership
· Challenging learning experiences for all students
· Strong curriculum and materials in all required subjects
· Competent, caring teachers focused on standards
· Excellent library media services and technology
· Comprehensive guidance and counseling for all students
· Support for students who are learning English, who are at risk, or who have physical or learning disabilities
· Family involvement and partnerships with business and community
· A safe environment that promotes citizenship, caring, fairness, respect, responsibility and trustworthiness
Schools selected for recognition will be honored Friday, May 21 during a ceremony in Anaheim at the Disneyland Hotel. State Superintendent Jack O’Connell will present each school with a plaque and special flag. The event and awards are funded by donations from many of California's most prominent corporations and statewide education organizations.
The list of honorees in the Long Beach Unified School District includes four repeat winners: Cubberley, Kettering, Lowell and Signal Hill. Other previous state award winners are Avalon, Hudson and Newcomb schools, Polytechnic and Wilson high schools, California Academy of Mathematics and Science, Hughes, Rogers and Stanford middle schools and Barton, Cleveland, Fremont, Gant, International, Los Cerritos, Madison, Prisk, and Twain elementary schools.
California Distinguished School and National Blue Ribbon School awards are coveted not only by educators, but also by homeowners and realtors who often see higher appreciation in property values in neighborhoods with award-winning schools.