Weekly roundup: Costa Mesa students place second at national engineering competition; Newport-Mesa USD appoints a new interim superintendent; and more

The Math Engineering Science Achievement — better known as MESA — team from Costa Mesa Middle and High School recently placed second overall at the National Engineering Design Challenge, which was held June 21-22 at the University of Arizona.


High school juniors Sophia Catania, Lucero Islas and Lena Nguyen and eighth-graders Aubrey Spallone, Audrey Nguyenhuu and Kayla Stanley make up the CMMS/HS team and represented the state of California at both the middle and high school level.

MESA-USA is an award-winning K-16 STEM organization whose leaders and alumni are advocates for equity and access to high quality STEM education and training for under-represented students. The program serves over 49,000 K-14 students in nearly 350 school districts and has provided STEM pathways for over 50 years.

And here are some of the other education stories we are tracking this week.

  • California schools this year received billions of state and federal dollars to spend on programs to help students catch up on the learning they lost while school campuses were closed. But EdSource reports that many districts are struggling with teacher shortages in the areas of special education, math, science and bilingual education. 
  • And, the Los Angeles Board of Education approved a record $20-billion budget for the upcoming academic year — a massive influx of funding made possible by pandemic relief money and record state tax revenues.

This is the part where we encourage you to keep up with local education news stories by bookmarking the OCDE Newsroomsubscribing for emailed updates and following us on FacebookTwitter and Instagram.