11th Annual Riverside County Education Summit mixes cutting edge technology, best practices from dozens of high performing schools around the county, project based student learning with hundreds of educators in attendance

11th Annual RCOE Education Summit

Riverside County Superintendent of Schools Kenneth Young and the Riverside County Office of Education hosted over 400 educators October 24, 2013, to the 11th Annual Riverside County Educational Summit and Models of Academic Excellence Recognition Luncheon at the Palm Springs Convention Center.

Riverside County Superintendent of Schools Kenneth Young and the Riverside County Office of Education hosted over 400 educators October 24, 2013, to the 11th Annual Riverside County Educational Summit and Models of Academic Excellence Recognition Luncheon at the Palm Springs Convention Center (Photos from the event).

Keynote speaker Dr. Milton Chen, former executive director of the George Lucas Education Foundation and author of the book “Education Nation,” kicked off the event sharing how “as a result of constant innovation, learning is no longer limited by traditional confines and we’re moving beyond students tied to their chairs, desks, and textbooks-and teachers locked away in classrooms.”

With the combination of the Internet and small, portable smart devices (like today’s smart phones and tablets), students literally have a world of information in their hands.

Young people are accessing information 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Educators can leverage this by treating students as digital scholars, mentoring them on the exploration and application of high quality online content that is relevant to their lives, interests and education. Chen also explained how parents can use technology to better help their children in the learning process.

“With the Internet, we can all get the answers to almost any question anytime, anywhere,” Chen said. “But it’s knowing why the answers are important that is so important.”

 Dr. Milton Chen & Mimi Badura

Keynote speaker Dr. Milton Chen, former executive director of the George Lucas Education Foundation and author of the book “Education Nation,” speaks with Mimi Badura from the Riverside County 23rd District PTA, during the Riverside County Education Summit and Models of Academic Excellence Luncheon.

Chen also spoke about America becoming a country where “the education of children and adults is the highest national priority, on par with a strong economy, high employment, and national security.” He demonstrated this by displaying currency from China and other parts of the world where education is a very high national priority—the currency depicts images of groups of children learning.

Another aspect of the summit was the Models of Academic Excellence workshops, culminating in an awards luncheon. The Riverside County Office of Education reviews numerous applications for the award submitted by schools and school districts in the county that have been proven successful in improving student academic achievement and can be replicated countywide.  Those selected receive the Riverside County Models of Academic Excellence award during the luncheon. Some of those selected are also invited to share the best practice that earned them this recognition during a series of workshops at the summit.

Linking the best practices and Dr. Chen’s message together in his remarks to attendees during the luncheon, Riverside County Superintendent of Schools expressed, “We believe the information you’ve been given today, both by Dr. Milton Chen and by presenters from the Models of Academic Excellence demonstrations, will stimulate thought and action that can enhance student educational outcomes in Riverside County.”

The workshops that earned the distinction of “Models of Academic Excellence” included transitioning to the new state Common Core standards, preparing students for college and careers, meeting the instructional needs of English Learners, and preparing teachers to address the needs of 21st century learners.

This year’s school and school district Models of Academic Excellence that were recognized are:

Health Career Academy: Supporting Students for College and Health Career Readiness
Alvord Unified School District
La Sierra High School

Weathering the Storm: How Highly Functional Teams Drive Student Success
Alvord Unified School District
La Sierra High School

Collective Inquiry
Compton Unified School District
Laurel Street Elementary School

CST (California Standardized Test) Grade Incentive Program
Corona-Norco Unified School District
Centennial High School

Counseling for College and Career Readiness
Corona-Norco Unified School District
Santiago High School

Save Our Seniors (SOS)
Corona-Norco Unified School District
Lee V. Pollard High School

School-wide Implementation of Science Content and Notebooking (SCAN)
Corona-Norco Unified School District
River Heights Intermediate School

Student Academic Support
Corona-Norco Unified School District
Citrus Hills Intermediate School

Hemet High School Career Technical Automotive Program a.k.a. “Bulldog Garage”
Hemet Unified School District
Hemet High School

Dual Immersion
Jurupa Unified School District

Focus for Success
Jurupa Unified School District

Big 7 School-wide Commitments
Moreno Valley Unified School District
Sunnymead Middle School

Canyon Springs High School Health Careers Academy
Moreno Valley Unified School District
Canyon Springs High School

Moreno Valley Multi-Agency Collaborative
Moreno Valley Unified School District

Setting Sail for Success
Moreno Valley Unified School District
Edgemont Elementary School

Site Governance Committees
Moreno Valley Unified School District
March Mountain High School

Turning Passion Into Practice: Integrated Projects and Senior Exit Interview
Murrieta Valley Unified School District
Murrieta Mesa High School

Cielo Vista Charter Project Based Learning
Palm Springs Unified School District
Cielo Vista Charter School

DIGICOM
Palm Springs Unified School District

Middle School Programs that Support the Common Core and Career Technical Education (CTE)
Palm Springs Unified School District
Nellie Coffman Middle School

Monitoring Rigor, Instruction, and Collaboration Through the PREVI
Palm Springs Unified School District
Cahuilla Elementary School

Going “Above and Beyond” by Integrating Science and Writing
Perris Elementary School District, Railway School of Math, Science, and Technology
Pachappa Elementary

HEARTS After School Program
Riverside Unified School District
Pachappa Elementary School

Strategic Student Guidance
Riverside Unified School District
Arlington High School

Leadership Education: ‘Growing Team-Builders’
San Jacinto Unified School District
San Jacinto Leadership Academy

Promoting a College-Going Environment in a High-Poverty High School
Sweetwater Union High School District
Sweetwater High School

21st Century PLC/VAPA
Temecula Valley Unified School District
Ysabel Barnett Elementary School

District-wide Transition to the Common Core State Standards
Temecula Valley Unified School District

Peer Buddies Program
Temecula Valley Unified School District
Erle Stanley Gardner Middle School

Val Verde’s Focus on Raising Student Academic Achievement for All
Val Verde Unified School District

University Preparatory “Building a Culture of Excellence”
Victor Valley Union High School District
University Preparatory School