May 26, 2023
State Superintendent Tony Thurmond Meets with Huron Community Leaders and Pledges Support for New High School
Thurmond promises to bring together resources from state, county, private, and philanthropic partners to help community realize vision for students
HURON—State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond joined Senator Anna Caballero (SD 14) and civil rights icon and California Education Ambassador Dolores Huerta today at the Coalinga-Huron Unified School District (CHUSD), where he pledged his support to bring a new high school to the area. Thurmond promised to bring together resources from state, county, private, and philanthropic partners to help the community realize its vision for students. The visit was part of Thurmond’s school tour series to showcase programs around the state.
“We are here to find a way for students to attend high school in Huron. I believe that after our visit, there is hope, and there will be a plan to raise public and private funds to build a school for the community,” Thurmond said.
“I am committed to collaborating with these parties to work through the issues and build a plan and a process—and to carry it out to make this happen.
“We are extremely honored to have Dolores Huerta here with us. She is a civil rights icon and a California Education Ambassador, and she has held up a torch to tirelessly lead the way to better educational opportunities for all of California’s students,” Thurmond added. “I thank Dolores for her extraordinary efforts and leadership for social justice and for inspiring us to do better and be better.”
Thurmond also highlighted the excellent work of CHUSD in the area of electric transportation—CHUSD has secured $12 million in grant funding for electric vehicles and infrastructure, which makes the district a leader in California. Thurmond announced that the California Department of Education (CDE) will be granting the district $630,000 next month to help offset the cost of student transportation. This is in addition to current Local Control Funding Formula contributions of $400,000 for a total of more than $1 million in funding for home-to-school transportation. Following the announcement, Thurmond, Caballero, and Huerta visited the future site of the proposed Huron high school and visited Huron Middle School, where they met with students.
CHUSD is approximately 60 miles from the city of Fresno in Fresno County. The district is home to 4,434 students. Of that number, 1,867 students are English Learners, and 3,808 students are eligible for free and reduced-priced meals.
Superintendent Thurmond has made it a priority to visit students and educators in all parts of the state in an effort to listen and learn about challenges and opportunities, to highlight efforts underway to address learning recovery, and to provide equitable opportunities for all students. He has been a champion of high-quality early learning opportunities, including universal access to Transitional Kindergarten for all four-year-old children by the 2025–26 school year, as a key component of his Transforming California Schools Initiatives.
California is home to a culturally and linguistically diverse population of six million students and one million early learners. The ability to read by third grade remains a key benchmark in measuring and predicting student success, and Superintendent Thurmond is committed to supporting all students as they develop reading skills in English and languages in addition to English.As part of his visit to CHUSD, Thurmond also discussed the importance of teacher recruitment to build up staff now and to have teachers available to serve when the new school is built. He reminded those in attendance that there is a $20,000 scholarship from the state available for anyone who wants to be an educator in California along with a $20,000 scholarship for anyone who wants to be a mental health clinician. Interested candidates can email TeachinCA@cde.ca.gov.
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Tony Thurmond —
State Superintendent of Public Instruction
Communications Division, Room 5602, 916-319-0818, Fax 916-319-0100