"These schools serve students facing real challenges, and they've risen to meet them through hard work and dedication," Torlakson said. "It is inspiring to see their students achieve more in the classroom today so they can enjoy more opportunity in the years to come."
The Title I Academic Achievement Award is given only to schools receiving federal Title I funds as authorized by the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. Title I, the single largest federal educational program for K-12 public education, assists schools in meeting the educational needs of students living at or below the poverty line. Of the more than 9,900 schools in California, more than 6,000 of them participate in the Title I program.
The criteria to qualify for the Title I award have become more rigorous in recent years. To receive this distinction, the school must demonstrate that all students are making significant progress toward proficiency on California's academic content standards. Additionally, the school's socioeconomically disadvantaged students must have doubled the achievement targets set for them for two consecutive years.
The National Title I Association also presents each year two National Title I Distinguished School Awards per state. The awards are given to one Academic Achievement Award winning school that has demonstrated exceptional student performance for two or more consecutive years and to one Academic Achievement Award winning school that made the most progress in closing the achievement gap between student groups.
To learn more about Title I awards, please visit the California Department of Education (CDE) Web page at: Academic Achievement Awards.