13 WCCUSD elementary schools earn Gold Ribbon Award


Thirteen West Contra Costa Unified elementary schools are among 772 of nearly 6,000 schools in California to receive the Gold Ribbon Schools Award, State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson announced Wednesday.

The award recognizes the schools that have implemented the state-adopted academic content and performance standards in subjects such as English, mathematics and science.

Award winners include Coronado, Fairmont, Hanna Ranch, Harding, Kensington, Madera, Montalvin, Olinda, Peres, Riverside, Sheldon, Valley View, and Washington elementary schools.

Peres received the award for its Efficacy Model, which emphasizes a “think you can, work hard, get smart” mindset for students, staff and stakeholders. It has helped to raise API scores at the school from 456 in 2001 to 810 in 2014.

“At Peres, we know all children can learn at high levels through efficacy and all of our programs are designed to advance the mission of academic proficiency and strong character through hard work,” Principal Jawan Eldridge said.

Washington Elementary earned the Gold Ribbon Award for its Dual Language Immersion program, which includes participation from parents as well as teachers and students. Principal Lisa Levi said combined efforts of parents, teachers and students are what makes the program a success.

“The schools that have been named Gold Ribbon schools are evidence that we are on the right track when it comes to improving outcomes for students,” Board President Randy Enos said in a district statement.

The award, which recognized middle and high schools last year and focused on elementary schools this year, was created in place of the California Distinguished Schools Program, which is on hiatus while California creates new assessment and accountability systems.