California Gold Ribbon Schools ProgramA program for which honors some of California's outstanding public schools. Schools that are selected demonstrate exemplary achievements in implementing state standards in priority areas.
The California Department of Education (CDE) seeks to recognize outstanding educational programs and practices. The California Gold Ribbon Schools Award was created to honor public schools while the California Distinguished Schools Program is on hiatus as California continues its transition to new assessment and accountability systems. Since the program's inception, CDE has recognized 193 middle schools, 180 high schools, and 780 elementary schools as Gold Ribbon School Award recipients. We will honor middle and high schools in 2017.
Traditionally, the Distinguished Schools Program honored public schools that showed improved student outcomes as measured through Standardized Testing and Reporting scores and additional measures. As programs and policies evolve, the CDE looks toward the same recognition of educational quality with the implementation of academic content and performance standards adopted by the State Board of Education for all pupils, including English learners.
California middle and high schools that have made tremendous gains in implementing State Board policies and their Local Control Accountability Plan are invited to apply for the 2017 Gold Ribbon Schools Award. Model programs and practices should include standards-based activities, projects, strategies, and practices that schools have adopted during this transitional period, which can be replicated by other local educational agencies.
As components of the new accountability system have been approved by the State Board of Education and the CAASPP test scores are available, schools must certify that their percentage of students who Met or Exceeded standards on the ELA and Math Smarter Balanced Assessment for the 2015-16 testing cycle is higher than the statewide average for like schools. (i.e. a high school’s percentage of students exceeding or meeting standards must be higher than the statewide average for high school students meeting or exceeding standards).
2017 Middle and High Schools Program
- Timeline of Activities (Updated 18-Nov-2016)
- Eligibility Information
- List of Eligible Middle and High Schools (XLS; Updated 31-Oct-2016)
- Letter to District and County Superintendents, Charter School Administrators, and Middle and High School Principals
- County Coordinators
- Webinar (PDF; 2MB) On November 2, 2016, two Webinars were held to provide training to the schools and county coordinators regarding the 2017 Gold Ribbon School Awards applications and exemplary applications. These are the slides of the presentation.
IMPORTANT: If your school is on the list of eligible middle and high schools above, but you were a 2015 Gold Ribbon School recipient, you cannot apply for this award for 2017.
2017 Application Package
Applications for the 2017 Gold Ribbon School and any Exemplary Programs must be postmarked no later than Monday, December 5, 2016. (Updated 18-Nov-2016)
Gold Ribbon Schools Award
- Intent to Apply (Updated 18-Nov-2016) (Deadline to submit has been extended to Wednesday, November 30, 2016, at 11:59 p.m.)
This form is to be used by a middle or high school principal to indicate his/her intent to apply for the 2017 California Gold Ribbon Schools Award. Submission of this form is required to be considered for the Gold Ribbon School Award.
- Intent to Apply - Frequently Asked Questions (Updated 28-Oct-2016)
- Gold Ribbon Application Instructions (DOC)
- Gold Ribbon Application Part A (DOC)
- Gold Ribbon Application Part B (DOC)
- Gold Ribbon Application Scoring Rubric (DOC)
- Arts Education Application Instructions (DOC)
- Arts Education Application, Part I (DOC; Updated 7-Nov-2016)
- Arts Education Application, Part II (DOC; Updated 7-Nov-2016)
- Arts Education Scoring Rubric (DOC)
- Career, Technical Education Application Instructions (DOC)
- Career, Technical Education Application, Part I (DOC)
- Career, Technical Education Application, Part II (DOC)
- Career, Technical Education Scoring Rubric (DOC)
- Physical Activity & Nutrition Education Application Instructions (DOC)
- Physical Activity & Nutrition Education Application (DOC)
- Physical Activity & Nutrition Education Scoring Rubric (DOC)
2016 Sponsors and Special Friends
Special thanks to our sponsors and partners who help to make our program a success!
California Casualty Headquartered in San Mateo, California Casualty is proud to sponsor the CDE’s School Recognition program because we are committed to education and have supported California teachers and students at school, in the community and behind the wheel for over 60 years.
It is an honor to recognize educators who make a difference every day for our children. It takes real commitment to go far above and beyond to help students reach their full potential. Follow the link above to learn more about California Casualty and our sponsorship of the California Department of Education’s California School Recognition Program.
- California Community Foundation
- California School Employees Association
- Schools First Federal Credit Union
- California Association of School Business Officials
- Common Sense Kids Action, Common Sense Media, Common Sense Education
- California Association of Realtors
- California State Parent Teacher Association
- Association of California School Administrators
Congratulations to our 2016 Elementary Gold Ribbon Schools!