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Pacific High Earns State Award for Civic Education

Pacific High Earns State Award for Civic Education
Posted on 03/15/2019
Announcement of Pacific High School’s 2019 Civic Learning Award of Distinction

Pacific High School’s efforts to engage students in civic learning has earned the campus a prestigious state award.

Pacific was one of six California schools, and the only one in the Inland Empire, to receive the 2019 Civic Learning Award of Distinction from State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond and Chief Justice of California Tani G. Cantil-Sakauye.

These schools engage students in civic learning through unique classes, clubs, and programs preparing students for participation in democracy. The awards are designed to both celebrate successful efforts to engage students in civic learning and to identify successful models that can be replicated in other schools. This is the second year that Pacific has earned the Award of Distinction.

Pacific High emphasizes volunteer service among students, encouraging them to better their community by getting involved in projects that appeal to them, whether it be registering new voters or sprucing up their school and neighborhood. Last year alone, Pacific High students amassed 10,000 hours of community service, and students are on track to surpass that number this year, said Principal Dr. Natalie Raymundo.

“Civic education is much more than teaching students about laws and ethics,” Raymundo said. “We want our students to care for others and take ownership of their community.”

Students can participate in several school clubs that encourage them to serve others. The Students Stand Together Club has organized on-campus rallies to protest gun violence. The Random Acts of Kindness Club, headed by social studies and government teacher C.J. Eastwood, focuses on small but meaningful actions that students can take to brighten the lives of classmates and teachers. Bilingual students use their skills to interpret for patients at free health clinics sponsored by the Tzu Chi Foundation. All these are opportunities to prepare students to be productive citizens, Raymundo said.

“The skills they learn from this go far beyond what they would learn in class,” she said. “We’re helping our students find their voice.”

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