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Napa High receives Gold Ribbon School honors

Press release

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(Napa, CA) On May 31, Napa High School officially accepted its 2017 California Gold Ribbon School honor from State Superintendent of Public Instruction, Tom Torlakson. Napa High School qualified to apply for this honor based on the number of students who met or exceeded standards on the English Language Arts & Math 2016 CAASPP (California Assessment of Student Performance & Progress). Eleventh grade students take the CAASPP each spring. Statewide, 477 schools who qualified to apply went through the process and completed an application. Of the 477 applicants, 275 middle and high schools were selected as 2017 Gold Ribbon Schools.

Wayne Gilbert, English teacher lead, said, “Our moves as a faculty over the last three years to deliver content in more engaging ways to our students have better prepared our students to tackle the rigor of the CAASPP. This award was the result of a truly collective effort of a staff that puts students at the center of all that we do.”

Sarah Denney, Math teacher leader, said, “I am proud of the Napa High Math department for working through the challenges of shifting to Common Core and the Integrated Math Curriculum. I am also proud of how our students have adjusted and persevered through these changes. The Math department can’t take all of the credit because our student scores are a reflection of how other other departments support the reading and analysis of difficult texts as well.”

In their Gold Ribbon School Application, Napa High School staff highlighted their partnerships with New Tech Network and AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination). New Tech network is a national organization supporting almost 200 schools in implementing project- and problem-based learning. AVID is a national organization with more than six thousand schools implementing its approach to supporting students. New Tech Network supports adaptive shifts in the way Napa High approaches teaching and learning, while AVID provides best practice strategies that help all students engage in Writing, Inquiry, Collaboration, Organization and Reading (WICOR).

Principal Annie Petrie said, “Our partnerships with AVID and New Tech Network help support our focus on activating student voice, and they have also impacted how we approach adult learning.”

AVID Coordinator Martha Calderon says she believes that, “Our staff’s willingness to learn and and implement WICOR strategies in their classrooms has been instrumental in helping expand AVID for all. AVID will continue to help our students achieve their learning goals across all disciplines.”

The partnerships with NTN and AVID focus on student outcomes. Both organizations support schools by putting students at the center of the work. Project- and problem-based learning are built on the premise that instruction should be differentiated and personalized from beginning to end. This includes including elements of student voice and choice in the development of projects or units of study. The AVID strategies act as scaffolds for learning so that it can be accessible to students of all abilities. The schoolwide learning outcomes also place a clear focus on the 21s t century skills that will support students in finding success beyond NHS.

“We are proud to be a comprehensive high school willing to transform classroom practices that put students at the center to prepare them for 21st century careers and college,” Petrie said.

Napa High School serves 1,800 students in grades 9-12.

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The student news site of Napa High School
Napa High receives Gold Ribbon School honors