Three San Ramon Valley Unified School District high schools were recognized as 2021 California Distinguished Schools by the state's Department of Education the district announced on Wednesday, a designation earned for the schools showing significant gains in narrowing achievement gaps.
California, Dougherty Valley and Monte Vista high schools join Iron Horse and Stone Valley middle schools -- which were named Distinguished Schools earlier this year -- in being recognized for high-quality test scores, suspension rates, conditions and climate among other quality school indicators.
"The staff and students at these schools work very hard to create climates where all students feel safe and respected so they are ready to learn," SRVUSD Superintendent John Malloy said in a statement. "Student well-being is a priority and the success being realized by students is the result of collaborative efforts to provide supports and opportunities so every student can succeed at high levels."
Launched as a part of the California School Recognition Program, Distinguished Schools are designed to not only honor California's very best public schools, but to also recognize schools for their exemplary efforts to improve the quality of education received by their students.
The Distinguished Schools Program recognizes schools for their excellent work in closing the achievement gap -- which is characterized as a significant disparity in student achievement between groups according to the California Department of Education -- and achieving exceptional student performance, according to state officials.
"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," California State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond said in a statement.
Elementary schools and middle and high schools are recognized in alternate years, with awardees holding their titles for two years.
In 2019, Los Cerros, Pine Valley and Windemere Ranch middle schools as well as California High School were all recognized as California Distinguished Schools.
A full list of this year's winners can be found online at www.cde.ca.gov.