Weekly roundup: Garden Grove campus celebrates National Blue Ribbon honor, OCDE launches Universal PreKindergarten survey, and more

Cook Elementary School students celebrate being named a National Blue Ribbon School on Dec. 4. (Courtesy of Garden Grove Unified School District)
Cook Elementary School students celebrate being named a National Blue Ribbon School during an assembly on Dec. 4. (Courtesy of the Garden Grove Unified School District)

On Monday, Dec. 4, Cook Elementary School students and staff celebrated being named one of six 2023 National Blue Ribbon Schools in Orange County.

Anthony, Cook and Paine elementary schools in the Garden Grove Unified School District were selected for the program among 33 schools throughout California and 353 campuses nationwide.

The other Orange County schools that received this honor were Buena Terra Elementary School in the Centralia Elementary School District, Early College High School in the Newport-Mesa Unified School District and Crean Lutheran High School in Irvine.

The Orange County Register reported that Cook Elementary School celebrated its campus-wide achievement with an assembly that included speeches from students and administrators, and a performance by the Bolsa Grande High School choir.

The U.S. Department of Education annually recognizes public and private elementary, middle and high schools through the National Blue Ribbon Schools Program for their overall academic excellence or their progress in closing achievement gaps among the student population.

“The Blue Ribbon Award represents the best of the best in education and we are thrilled that three GGUSD schools are national models of academic excellence,” said Board of Education president Walter Muneton.

Here are the other stories we’ve been following this week:

  • With the launch of its countywide Universal PreKindergarten survey, OCDE wants to hear from families who have enrolled their children in a preschool or kindergarten program in order to better understand the early education needs of the community.

  • Amid the economic challenges affecting California’s economy, the Orange County Department of Education is projected to meet all financial obligations for the current year and next two fiscal years, OCDE’s Administrative Services division told the Orange County Board of Education at its regular meeting.
  • In commemoration of the anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor, the OCDE Newsroom shared an interview from 2016 with Ray Chavez, who was then the oldest known survivor. Chavez recalled his memories of Dec. 7, 1941 with the OCDE Media Services team as part of a collaborative project with Latino Advocates for Education.
  • Southern California high school seniors planning to pursue studies in the STEM fields can apply until Jan. 23 to win a $50,000 college scholarship from the Edison Scholars Program.
  • Next month, University of California science and math professors plan to give their recommendations on the amount of math knowledge high schoolers will need prior to taking a college-qualifying science course.
  • The county Registrar of Voters notified residents within specific boundary lines in the Orange Unified School District that they will be able to vote on whether to recall two board members in the upcoming presidential primary election, according to the Orange County Register.

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.