National Group Names Whittier Tech as Distinguished School for Success with Special Populations

Whittier Regional Vocational Technical High School. (Courtesy photograph.)

Whittier Regional Vocational Technical High School was recently named a Distinguished School by a national organization for exceptional student achievement.

Whittier Tech is one of up to 100 schools throughout the country being recognized this year by the National Association of ESEA State Program Administrators. The National ESEA Distinguished Schools Program highlights qualifying federally funded schools for making significant improvements for their students. The Elementary and Secondary Education Act  provides additional resources for vulnerable students and federal grants to state educational agencies to improve the quality of public elementary and secondary education.

Whittier Tech was one of two schools nominated by the state Department of Elementary and Secondary Education for this honor.

Schools may earn the designation for excellence in one of three categories. Whittier Tech is being honored for excellence in serving special populations of students, including those that are homeless, migrants, English learners and others. Approximately 50.5% of Whittier Tech students fall within the special population category.

Whittier Tech works to support these students through unique classes including an Inclusionary Special Education Program, early college programs, and extracurricular clubs and activities that support the social-emotional needs of students. Students also participate in an Advisory Program twice a month where they discuss time management, goal setting, self-advocacy skills, mindfulness and more. Students also have the opportunity to participate in Cooperative Education after completing two years in their chosen pathway, which gives them valuable trade experience at a real workplace before they graduate.

“We are honored to be recognized for success in serving special student populations. Every student, regardless of background, has a right to succeed academically and socially, and we are committed to providing this type of positive and supportive environment at Whittier Tech,” said Whittier Tech Superintendent Maureen Lynch.

Whittier Tech will be recognized alongside other honorees at the National ESEA Conference in February 2023 in Indianapolis, Ind.

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