featured graphic for Centralia School District during COVID-19, logo courtesy of CSD

Centralia Elementary School District wins State Model School Attendance Review Board Award

Centralia Elementary School District (CESD) has been honored with the state’s 2021 Model School Attendance Review Board (SARB) Award for successful implementation of multi-tiered student attendance and re-engagement strategies. Centralia is one of only two Orange County districts awarded this distinction this year.

Sponsored by the California Department of Education (CDE) in cooperation with the California Association of Supervisors of Child Welfare and Attendance (CASCWA), the Model SARB Recognition Program identifies districts that are implementing exemplary practices for student attendance and engagement. State Superintendent Tony Thurmond annually convenes the State’s School Attendance Review Board, which brings together key agencies and community partners to score applications submitted by district and county SARBs throughout the state.

Dr. Stacy Chang, Director of Parent and Student Engagement who oversees the District’s Child Welfare and Attendance at CESD, shares, “This is a collaborative effort of all the schools and departments with parents and the community. It is our priority to ensure that all students connect to school, whether they are in distance learning or in-person instruction. Through the coordinated efforts of staff and the District’s Neighborhood Resource Center, families are connected with resources that they may need during the pandemic, including technology, health care, mental wellness, food, and more, so that they have opportunities to succeed during these challenging times.”

Student attendance and participation is crucial as ever during the COVID-19 pandemic. At Centralia Elementary School District, strong-tiered levels of supports are in place to ensure the engagement of students at all sites. School teams along with the District’s Social Workers and Community Liaisons focus their supports for students and families that need interventions and resources.

Through the Superintendent’s student engagement campaign, Project JDI, staff mentors connect to selected students and work to develop relationships and connect with the students and families. Students are also invited to “KidsKonnect”, a program that provides small group engagement for community-building, social skills, and connection with the District Social Worker.

Families that need intensive, individualized supports receive referrals to the District’s SARB for coordinated responses in a multi-agency board that includes representatives from the school, District, and community partners including Social Services, health care agency, and law enforcement. The state’s data shows that the District is seeing success in providing individualized interventions and supports to families through this collaborative process.

“Research has been consistent in emphasizing the importance of helping students attend school for future
success,” said Superintendent Norma E. Martinez. “In pandemic times, the opportunity for true and active
student engagement cannot be overemphasized. This recognition validates our district’s attention to supporting
students, particularly our most vulnerable. It is a point of pride to say that we are a District with a model SARB program as it validates the hard work of each of our staff members in this effort.”

“I am thrilled that the District’s priority on student engagement through supportive attendance practices is
being recognized by CDE and CASCWA. On behalf of the Board, I commend all staff for this recognition,” said
Board President Luis Flores.

The State recognized the achievement of the District at the State SARB videoconference on April 15, 2021 and at
the CASCWA State Conference on April 27, 2021.

ABOUT THE CENTRALIA ELEMENTARY SCHOOL DISTRICT (CESD) – CESD serves approximately 4,200 students from preschool to grade six on eight school campuses, in the cities of Anaheim, Buena Park and La Palma. In 2019, CESD was identified as one of 156 Positive Outlier districts in California that has excelled at supporting the learning of students of color and students from low-income families. In 2020, CESD had the highest scoring elementary school in Orange County in English Language Arts and the highest performing school in the City of Buena Park. All CESD schools have received awards from the California PBIS Coalition for Platinum or Gold level status in promoting positive behaviors and school supports. Five schools have been recognized in 2020 as Civic Learning Schools, with San Marino School earning an Award of Distinction.

In addition to its outstanding students and an excellent staff, CESD has a very strong partnership with community organizations such as the Centralia Education Foundation, PTAs/PTSO, Tiger Woods Learning Foundation, the cities of Anaheim, Buena Park and La Palma, and other local organizations and businesses. More information about CESD is available at www.cesd.us. Follow us on social media- Facebook @cesd.us and on Twitter @CentraliaSup.

This article was released by the Centralia Elementary School District.