—The following information was contributed by Mountain View-Los Altos Union High School District Superintendent Barry Groves.
Los Altos High School was again named a California Distinguished School, earning recognition in a competitive process sponsored by the California Department of Education. In an announcement released April 11, 2013, the CDE notes that Distinguished Schools provide a rigorous education to all students while making significant progress in closing the achievement gap.
In addition to earning top scores in California’s Academic Performance Index, Los Altos High was recognized for two “signature practices” aimed at increasing the achievement of Latino students, and students who enter high school below grade level. Of the many outstanding programs offered at Los Altos High, the staff chose to highlight the work of the Latino Student Union, , and also the work of the 9th Grade Core/Academic Support program in its application.
Representatives of the Santa Clara County Office of Education visited Los Altos High in March to assess the school and meet with students, parents and staff. This visit confirmed the high quality of Los Altos High School’s academic program and campus climate. Martha L. Martinez, Director III of District/School Improvement Services and lead visitor to Los Altos High, wrote in an email, “I personally want to commend you and your staff for making the site validation visit a memorable day for the Distinguished Schools team.”
Los Altos Principal Wynne Satterwhite said, “We are especially proud of being recognized for meeting the needs of all students, and challenging all students, to achieve at the highest levels.”
In a California Department of Education press release, State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson said that schools like Los Altos “have gone the extra mile to provide high-quality instruction that puts their students on the right path toward career and college.”
A full list of the California Distinguished Schools for 2013 can be found on the state Department of Education website.