Northwood honored as a California Distinguished School

Rachel Yokota

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Sondos Elbershawi

HONORING NORTHWOOD: Along with Distinguished School, Northwood has also received several other awards that are proudly displayed on the campus.

Northwood High School was certified as a California Distinguished School on April 28 by State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond, marking the fourth time in the school’s 22-year history. 

“It is always nice for our staff and school community to be honored for their hard work and dedication to the learning for all of our students, especially in this crazy time,” Northwood Principal Leslie Roach said. “I feel grateful to work with such an amazing staff!”

Distinguished School is the highest award possible for Californian schools and aims to recognize schools that have achieved educational and student performance standards. The title is awarded yearly and lasts for two years.

102 middle and high schools were originally honored on March 18, but after reconsideration, the honor was extended to another 121 schools including Northwood. A total of 21 Orange County schools hold this title, out of which three are from IUSD. These honores are Lakeside Middle and University High.

This year, schools were not asked to submit applications for the award due to the pandemic’s impact on public education. Instead, eligibility for the award was based on the California School Dashboard, which evaluates schools on year-to-year improvements. This includes state test scores, suspension rates, graduation rates and the school’s overall environment.

“Considering Northwood and its academic level, it’s no surprise we became a distinguished school,” senior Sydney Inouye said. “Northwood students put in a lot of effort into their studies and it’s really amazing to hear that it is paying off.”