For the second year in a row, Ghidotti Early College High School in Grass Valley ranked first in a statewide assessment of student performance, Sierra Foothills Report has learned. The statewide results are here.
This is a coup for western Nevada County, competing against the likes of top-performing high schools in the Bay Area, Silicon Valley and Southern California. The achievement comes amid another recent prestigious statewide honor for our area: being named a Cultural District by the California Arts Council. (I wonder if it will dawn on the ERC and local real estate agents to begin promoting these achievements).
“We got some amazing news last week — once again, Ghidotti ranked #1 statewide on the CAASPP (California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress),” Noah Levinson, principal of Ghidotti Early College High School, wrote in a newsletter on Tuesday to parents.
“That’s out of 2,001 high schools. The test reflects the skills necessary to be successful in college and/or a career. I firmly believe that our school’s achievement is due to Ghidotti’s commitment to teaching and learning these skills. Bravo to the students, parents, Ghidotti staff, and Sierra College faculty.”
The CAASPP System replaced the Standardized Testing and Reporting (STAR) Program, which became inoperative on July 1, 2013.
More than 3.2 million students took part in CAASPP, which includes a number of different assessments, according to the California Department of Education. The most widely tested are the Smarter Balanced Summative Assessments in mathematics and English language arts/literacy, which are given in grades three through eight and grade 11.
California State Universities and many community colleges consider high marks on these tests among 11th-grade students a reliable sign of readiness for college-level work.
The Ghidotti Early College High School opened in August of 2006 allowing high school students to attend Sierra College courses (tuition-free) and graduate with not only a high school diploma, but transferrable college units and/or an associates degree. The Nevada Joint Union High School District partnered with Sierra College and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation for the initial funding to open the school. The school is located on the campus of Sierra College in Grass Valley.