OCDE’s OC Pathways team celebrates the department’s Golden Bell award-winning program on Dec. 4 in San Diego.
The California School Boards Association presented prestigious Golden Bell Awards to four educational programs in Orange County that supported the growth of career technical education, empowered students to be biliterate problem solvers, and promoted civic learning and leadership.
OCDE’s OC Pathways initiative, which connects educators and industry leaders to equip students for college and career success, was among the 39 statewide programs to receive an award during a special ceremony on Thursday, Dec. 2 in San Diego.
Now in its 42nd year, the Golden Bell Award is considered one of the state’s leading educational honors, recognizing public school programs that are inventive and sustainable, make a demonstrated difference for students, and focus on meeting the needs of all students.
This year, 112 entries in 21 categories were received. Experts from school districts and county offices of education — including Orange County Superintendent of Schools Dr. Al Mijares — comprised the 34-member judging panel.
OC Pathways connects educators and industry leaders to equip students for college and career success. Partners develop coursework that combines rigorous academics with career preparation across 15 industry sectors. Led by the Orange County Department of Education, this countywide consortium creates work-based learning opportunities for students and empowers educators with 21st-century learning strategies.
Civic Leadership and Learning Institute
Anaheim Union High School District
The Anaheim Union HSD Civic Leadership and Learning Institute is an essential program that aims to institutionalize civic learning by building teacher capacity to increase greater student voice, purpose, agency and action. Along with being equipped for college, career and citizenship in the 21st century, students leave well prepared to participate in our democracy and demonstrate kindness and compassion for others. These efforts have led to 16 of the 20 Anaheim Union schools named California Democracy Schools (the most in California), among other accolades. Collectively, sites earned 28 different kinds of civic learning awards, four students have been selected as National Mikva Soapbox Competition winners, and 1,963 students have earned the State Seal of Civic Engagement.
Curriculum and Instruction through the California Standards Implementation: Integrated Content
Academy of Language and Computer Science: Developing Biliterate Problem Solvers, Resilient Creators, Collaborative Designers and Global Contributors
Orange Unified School District, Jordan Academy of Language and Computer Science
Jordan Academy of Language and Computer Science offers a specialized immersion program that allows students to learn computer science while becoming bilingual in Spanish and English. The name reflects the unique educational experience provided, which fosters a culture that empowers students to be biliterate problem solvers, critical thinkers and provides a nurturing, culturally responsive learning environment that promotes equity and empathy.
Special Education Blue Ribbon Action Team; Everyone is Counted and Everyone Counts
Lowell Joint School District
The Lowell Joint ESD Special Education Blue Ribbon Action Team; Everyone is Counted and Everyone Counts program focuses on four key goals: 1) whole-heartedly strive to meet the unique needs of each student with disabilities, 2) creatively seek to improve and increase services for students with disabilities, 3) full integration of students with disabilities and 4) wrestle with the challenge of managing the overriding costs. The entire Lowell Joint community recognizes and celebrates the impact of the Special Education Blue Ribbon Action Team. The service and heart of the Special Education Blue Ribbon Action Team, along with the care of the educational staff, is making the future of the most valued-vulnerable students brighter, richer and filled with more potential because the LJSD family is truly committed that “Everyone is Counted, and Everyone Counts.”