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California Schools Honored with Civic Learning Award

Eighteen California schools today were named recipients of the 2023 Civic Learning Awards, an honor recognizing schoolwide achievements in civics. The award is co-sponsored by California Chief Justice Patricia Guerrero and State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond.  

Chief Justice Patricia Guerrero announced the honors from her chambers in honor of Law Day, which is recognized on May 1.

I chose Law Day to announce the recipients of the Civic Learning Award because this year's theme is what these awards stand for--honoring schools that recognize how civics, civility, and collaboration begin in our classrooms. --Chief Justice Patricia Guerrero

Chief Justice Guerrero will travel to each of the top three honorees to present the Award of Excellence in September. They are: 

  • Maple Creek Elementary School, Fresno County
  • Dale Junior High School, Orange County
  • Gilbert High School, Orange County

Three schools earned a Civic Learning Award of Distinction. They each will be presented with their award by a visiting judicial officer. They are:

  • Maywood Center for Enriched Studies, Los Angeles County
  • Palm Elementary, Los Angeles County
  • Innovations Academy, Sacramento County

Learn more about our highest honorees

Award Criteria

During the pandemic, the award program continued by celebrating promising civics programs and Champions of Civics. With campuses re-opening to in-person learning this year, the award returned to its origins of asking applicants to describe how school-wide policy and practices are helping support and expand civics in the classroom and through community activities. 

This year, extra consideration was given to schools that provided updated Local Control and Accountability Plans that incorporated civics and participated in the Judges in the Classroom program.

Additional Schools Earn Honors
The following schools earned a Civic Learning Award of Merit:

Fresno County–Dry Creek Elementary, Garfield Elementary School
Los Angeles County–Los Robles Academy, Nelson Elementary, Orange Grove Middle School, Sierra Vista Middle School
Orange County–Anaheim High School, South Junior High School
Riverside County–Norte Vista High School
Sacramento County–Natomas Pacific Pathways Prep (middle school and high school), Vista del Lago High School

The following schools earned Honorable Mention:

Fresno County Red Bank Elementary School, Kings River High School, Golden Charter Academy
Los Angeles County Del Valle Elementary, Workman Elementary School, Pantera Elementary School, Sparks Middle School, La Puente High School
Orange County Centralia Elementary School, Sycamore Junior High School, Ball Junior High School, Katella High School
Sacramento County Cordova High School, Folsom High School
Solano County Kairos Public Schools
Ventura County Royal High School

Applications are scored by a panel of educators and representatives from California’s judicial branch, and the Chief Justice’s Power of Democracy Steering Committee.