News Briefs | FYI
February 27, 2023
CA Exemplary Arts Education Awards announced
In January, state Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond announced that 19 schools were selected for the California Exemplary Arts Education Award. These schools demonstrated an exemplary commitment to providing adequate resources and funding for arts education. This year’s awardees provided high-quality arts curriculum and instruction and assessment; high-quality professional learning for staff who are responsible for providing arts learning; and access to high-quality, culturally responsive arts instruction for all students, including English learners, special education students and other special populations.
This is the first year that elementary, middle and high schools could apply for this award in the same year.
California Exemplary Arts Education Awards were given to the following schools:
  • Joaquin Miller Elementary, Burbank USD.
  • William McKinley Elementary, Burbank USD.
  • Providencia Elementary School, Burbank USD.
  • Thomas Edison Elementary, Burbank USD.
  • Carmel High, Carmel USD.
  • Inspire School of Arts and Sciences, Chico USD.
  • Reyburn Intermediate, Clovis USD.
  • Cold Spring Elementary, Cold Spring Elementary School District.
  • Washington Elementary, Compton USD.
  • Los Berros Visual and Performing Arts Academy, Lompoc USD.
  • Humanities and Arts (HARTS) Academy of Los Angeles, Los Angeles USD.
  • Maywood Center for Enriched Studies, Los Angeles USD.
  • South Shores/CSUDH Visual and Performing Arts, Los Angeles USD.
  • Walter Reed Middle, Los Angeles USD.
  • Marina Vista Elementary, Monterey Peninsula USD.
  • Franklin Elementary, Santa Barbara USD.
  • John C. Fremont Elementary, Stockton USD.
  • Temecula Valley High, Temecula Valley USD.
  • Meadows Arts and Technology Elementary, Ventura County Office of Education.
Gothold appointed to CCEE governing board
The Senate Rules Committee, chaired by Senate President Pro Tempore Toni G. Atkins, has appointed San Diego County Superintendent of Schools Paul Gothold to the California Collaborative for Educational Excellence governing board.
“Paul Gothold has made it his life’s work to improve equity in our educational systems to better support positive outcomes for students. His efforts have been instrumental, most recently having helped San Diego County reduce the number of criminalized youth and increase graduation rates,” Atkins said, in a news release announcing the appointment on Jan. 11. “Dr. Gothold’s passion and proven track record will serve the California Collaborative for Educational Excellence Governing Board’s mission to provide targeted and intensive support to local educational agencies.”
CCEE was established by the California State Legislature and governor to advise and assist school districts, county offices of education, and charter schools in achieving the goals and objectives in their Local Control and Accountability Plans.
Gothold has served as the San Diego County Superintendent of Schools since 2017. Prior to that, he served as deputy superintendent and then superintendent of Lynwood USD. Gothold has over 27 years of experience in K-12 education. He previously served in Montebello USD and the Los Angeles County Office of Education.

SPI announces 2023 middle grades ‘Schools to Watch’
State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond on Feb. 10 announced that 77 high-performing California middle grades schools have been recognized for 2023 by the California Schools to Watch program. There are 36 new California Schools to Watch this year. An additional 41 schools reapplied to the program, demonstrated their sustained progress, and have been redesignated as 2023 California Schools to Watch. Altogether, there are now 186 California Schools to Watch.
“Congratulations to these schools for building systems that support all students from all backgrounds and who bring a wealth of individual and family assets,” Thurmond said, in a news release. “These middle grades students attend programs that help them believe in themselves, discover their interests, and work toward their academic, life and career goals. These middle schools are exceptional role models of how educational innovation and an enthusiastic school community can keep students engaged and learning through a critical stage in their K–12 journey.”
Find the list of newly designated Schools to Watch online at Find the list of schools that have been redesignated as Schools to Watch at

Report: 150,000 students missing from California schools
More than 150,000 students have disappeared from California schools without explanation, according to a new report on post-pandemic public school enrollment in the U.S.
The report from Stanford professor Thomas Dee attempts to explain the pandemic-spurred exodus from public schools that has resulted in more than 1.2 million fewer students enrolled in K-12 schools across the nation.
“The data reveal that two of the primary explanations for the public school pandemic exodus are an increase in homeschooling and a decrease in the school-age population. But these two trends cannot explain the entire enrollment drop,” Dee writes. “The large amount of public school enrollment loss that, in many states, cannot be explained by changes in nonpublic enrollment and demographics suggests the possibility of other developmentally relevant behaviors (e.g., kindergarten skipping, unregistered homeschooling, and truancy) that merit further research.”
For example, California K-12 enrollment dropped by around 271,000 between the 2019-20 and 2021-22 school years. Some of this loss can be attributed to a decline in the school-age population and an increase in home school and private school enrollment. However, more than half of that enrollment loss (around 150,000 students) cannot be attributed to any observable demographic change.
Next ACSA K-12 site admin meeting is March 15
ACSA’s K-12 Site Administrators Leadership Network continues on Wednesday, March 15, from 5-6 p.m. This new series sponsored by the ACSA Elementary, Middle Grades and Secondary Education Councils in collaboration with NAESP and NASSP features essential leadership priorities based upon statewide input from school site leaders. Breakout rooms will be available for grade span specific focus. Join this free opportunity to learn from and network with colleagues around the state. To register, visit
Submit your proposal to present at Lead With Pride
ACSA is seeking presenters for the 2023 ACSA Lead With Pride Summit, which will be held May 3-5 at Town and Country in San Diego. This summit will empower California school administrators and educators with the tools to create safe and affirming spaces for LGBTQIA+ students and staff. Visit to submit your proposal. Proposals are due 5 p.m. Friday, March 17. A discounted registration rate will be given for presenters (up to three per session).
Culturally responsive speech pathologist training
The CDE Diagnostic Center, Northern California will offer an online training on culturally responsive approaches for speech-language pathologists at 3 p.m. March 15. Participants will receive an overview of best practice guidelines to consider when planning intervention for culturally and linguistically diverse students with speech-language impairments. Register at
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