SFUSD receives two CSBA Golden Bell awards

SFUSD receives two CSBA Golden Bell awards

Press Release

November 9, 2015 (San Francisco) – The San Francisco Unified School District (SFUSD) has been awarded two Golden Bell Awards from the California School Boards Association (CSBA).

The award recognizes public school programs that are innovative and sustainable, make a demonstrated difference for students, and focus on meeting the needs of all public school students.

“This is a huge moment for us,” said Superintendent Richard A. Carranza, referring to both awards.  “We are being recognized by a statewide organization for the ways we are transforming students’ experience both inside and outside of the classroom.”

Experts from school districts and county offices of education comprised of a 28-member judging panel reviewed the written entries and made the initial recommendations for the awards. On-site validators visited SFUSD schools and assessed the programs in action.

“California’s K-12 public schools continue to produce some of the nation’s best and brightest

students, and our Golden Bell recipients are a reflection of that excellence. The Golden Bell Awards recognize the quality and the determination of school leaders from across California in meeting the needs of California's students through award-winning programs and services,” said Vernon M. Billy, CSBA CEO & executive director.

A Partnership to Transform Middle Schools

One award goes to the district’s partnership with Mayor Ed Lee, the Salesforce Foundation, and the Superintendent, who joined forces two years ago to transform the learning environment for grade six through eight students.  The initiative first focused on building the technology infrastructure (wireless system, purchase of devices), which required a large initial investment, but one that can be maintained by other district resources moving forward. In addition, the investment in training teachers was considerable as entire school faculties got up to speed with this shift in technology.

Another component of the partnership is the Principal’s Innovation Fund. Every participating middle grades principal has been awarded a $100,000 discretionary fund. With the freedom to spend this money to best serve their sites, it led to a great deal of creativity with a wide range of activities launched, tested and incubated at school sites. These range from a platform for online sharing with Chinese students to having students help redesign their learning spaces.

The SFUSD Future Dining Experience

The other award is for SFUSD’s work to create a plan for a student-centered, financially-stable system that engages kids in eating fresh, healthy meals. With the Sarah & Evan Williams Foundation and IDEO, SFUSD created the Future Dining Experience, a plan that reflects the input of 1,300 students, parents, nutrition staff, principals, teachers, administrators, and community partners. As one part of implementing the long-term plan SFUSD has revamped cafeterias and incorporated technology at Roosevelt Middle School, Thurgood Marshall High School, Everett Middle School and Willie L. Brown, Jr. Middle School.

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Page updated on 11/09/15

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