These local schools are ‘beacons of hope’ for underserved students


Seven West County schools are among the Bay Area’s top-performing when it comes to educating underserved students, according to a report by the nonprofit Innovate Public Schools.

The report looked at 568 traditional district and public charter schools in the Bay Area that serve a certain percentage of low-income, minority students. It examined their results from the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP), a relatively new annual measure of how well students have grasped requirements in Common Core English language arts and mathematics.

Of the 568 Bay Area schools eligible for the report, underserved students at 41 performed better than the state average for all students on the English test, the math test or both.

As aforementioned, seven West County schools were among those 41.

In terms of Latino students taking the English test, Leadership Public High School at 880 Bissell Ave. in Richmond; Highland Elementary at 2829 Moyers Road in San Pablo; and Making Waves Academy at 4123 Lakeside Drive in Richmond, were top-performers in the Bay Area.

In terms of Latino students taking the math test,  Richmond College Prep at 214 S 11th St. in Richmond; Highland; Richmond Charter Academy (Amethod) at 1450 Marina Way South in Richmond; and Making Waves Charter made the list.

Also making the list of top performers are Montalvin Manor Elementary at 300 Christine Drive in San Pablo and Hanna Ranch at 2480 Refugio Valley Road in Hercules. At both schools, African American students met or exceeded the state average on the English test.

” We want to celebrate these schools and encourage attention to their practices, so that all schools in the Bay Area can learn from what works,” according to Innovate Public Schools.

Some of the schools were also among 14 WCCUSD campuses to earn Gold Ribbon awards from the California Department of Education for increasing student academic performance.

WCCUSD schools earning Gold Ribbon awards include Coronado, Fairmont, Hanna Ranch, Harding, Kensington, Madera, Montalvin, Olinda, Peres, Riverside, Sheldon, Valley View, and Washington elementary schools. De Anza High was recognized for outstanding achievement in 2015 by the Gold Ribbon program.

Of nearly 6000 elementary schools in California that were eligible to apply for a Gold Ribbon award, 772 were selected.

Photo credit: Amethod Public School’s Facebook page.