Weekly roundup: Orange County music and arts organization announces awardees, Westminster park dedicated to Mendez family opens, and more

Educators and honorees at the Orange County Music and Arts Administrators Awards on May 17, 2022.

The Orange County Music and Arts Administrators named 73 outstanding arts educators ahead of their 2023 awards ceremony coming up in February.

In their 30-year partnership with the Segerstrom Center for the Arts, the OCDE-led organization plans this annual event to recognize local accomplishments in leadership and arts instruction.

The reception will recognize elementary and secondary educators, classroom teachers, administrators and community arts advocates in four categories. Awards will be given to 30 educators next year among 73 nominees from 13 school districts.

Administered by the Orange County Department of Education, OCMAA has contributed to the development of arts education across the region while planning community collaborations and providing district arts plans.

“The Orange County Music and Arts Awards is the premier recognition for Orange County’s outstanding arts educators and is highly regarded within the community for its recognition of quality instructional service,” OCDE Arts Coordinator Scott Fitzpatrick said.

The celebration will take place on Feb. 8 at the Segerstrom Center’s Samueli Theater and will be free of charge to all attendees.

Here are the other stories we’ve kept up with this week:

  • The City of Westminster, in partnership with the Orange County Department of Education, unveiled the Mendez Tribute Monument Park dedicated to the Mendez family’s fight for racial integration in California public schools. Several news outlets including the Orange County Register and NBC Los Angeles covered the opening of the park, which made its debut 75 years after the historic Mendez v. Westminster case.
Ribbon-cutting ceremony
Westminster officials take part in a ceremonial ribbon-cutting before the unveiling of statues at Mendez Tribute Monument Park.
  • From Tustin to Placentia, schools and districts across Orange County celebrated the season of giving by hosting food drives and collecting donations to help those in need. The OCDE Newsroom compiled a list of acts of kindness from students and school staff this past month.
  • In honor of National Native American Heritage Month, County Superintendent of Schools Dr. Al Mijares connected with influential leaders to discuss their personal stories and passion for their communities.
  • With rates of fentanyl-related deaths increasing among Orange County youth, the OCDE Newsroom has gathered information from experts to answer parents’ questions about naloxone, a drug that can reverse the effects of an opioid overdose.
  • After an undefeated season, Marina High School senior Mika Ikemori will advance to the semifinals of the California Interscholastic Federation individual’s girls’ tennis championship.
Valencia High Helping Hands Donation
Valencia High School students organized a Thanksgiving basket drive for families in need. (Courtesy of the Placentia-Yorba Linda Unified School District)
  • The “flower cart” program in the Newport-Mesa Unified School District encourages Seamless Transition Enrichment Program (STEP) students to flourish in their job skills while engaging in joyful tasks.

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.