Four high schools in the William S. Hart Union High School District have been named 2021 California Distinguished Schools by California State Superintendent Tony Thurmond including Academy of the Canyons, Golden Valley, Hart and West Ranch.
“These additional high schools join the ranks of all 2021 California Distinguished Schools who are being recognized for this distinction because of their exceptional record to provide for all students and their commitment to data-driven efforts that prepare students for college and career,” Thurmond said. “Our thanks go to the entire communities surrounding these schools, including the teachers, administrators, and classified employees as well as the students and their families who, through teamwork, all accomplished this impressive achievement together.”
The four high schools join Placerita, Rancho Pico and Rio Norte junior highs, which were named 2021 California Distinguished Schools on March 19, 2021.
The California Department of Education (CDE) identifies and awards eligible schools based on performance and progress on state indicators specified on the California School Dashboard, the state’s accountability and continuous improvement system. Indicators include test scores, suspension rates, and conditions and climate. After a review of the data, CDE identified these additional schools for this year’s honor.
“Students, staff and families should be justifiably proud of this outstanding recognition,” said Hart District Superintendent Mike Kuhlman. “It shows that our District continues to push to close achievement gaps and to provide educational opportunities that can make a difference in the lives of the students we serve.”
Sponsored by the CDE and presented by California Casualty, the Distinguished Schools Program recognizes schools for their excellent work in one of two categories: closing the achievement gap and achieving exceptional student performance. Elementary schools and middle and high schools are recognized in alternate years; therefore, awardees hold the title for two years.
Distinguished Schools represent examples of not just excellent teaching, learning, and collaboration, but also highly successful, data-driven school efforts ranging from professional development to positive behavior intervention.