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Carl Hankey Middle School Recognized as 2015 California Gold Ribbon School
Posted 5/12/15

MISSION VIEJO, CA – Capistrano Unified School District’s (CUSD) Carl Hankey Middle School has been named a 2015 California Gold Ribbon School by the California Department of Education in recognition of its International Baccalaureate (IB) Middle Years Program. Hankey is one of 23 middle schools in Orange County to receive this state designation out of 83 middle schools countywide. The school will host a reception on campus to commemorate its selection as well as attend a California Department of Education regional ceremony in San Diego later this month. Hankey now holds the distinction of being a California Distinguished School, IB World School and California Gold Ribbon School.

The Gold Ribbon School Award recognizes California schools that have made gains in implementing the academic content and performance standards adopted by the State Board of Education. These include, the California Standards for English Language Arts and Mathematics, California English Language Development Standards, and Next Generation Science Standards. It temporarily replaces the California Distinguished Schools Program, which is on hiatus while the state creates new assessment and accountability systems for the program.

In announcing the 193 middle schools and 180 high schools statewide that were named California Gold Ribbon Schools for 2015, State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson said, “These schools are academically successful, vibrant, and innovative centers of learning and teaching. They provide great examples of the things educators are doing right – embracing rigorous academic standards, providing excellence and creativity in teaching, and creating a positive school climate."

According to Principal Dana Aguilera, Carl Hankey is the first south Orange County school to earn the K-8 International Baccalaureate World School designation. “We created an academic program that links together California’s grade level content standards, CUSD’s District Goals and Objectives, and International Baccalaureate World’s rigorous program standards. Our inquiry-based instructional curriculum, which promotes critical thinking and problem solving, combined with collaboration, creativity and international-mindedness bring out the very best in our students, both academically and personally, and I could not be more pleased by our recognition by the California Department of Education.”

CUSD Superintendent Kirsten Vital added, “Carl Hankey Middle School epitomizes Capistrano Unified School District’s commitment to academic excellence and the growth of its students. Under Ms. Aguilera’s leadership, Hankey established a goal of becoming an IB World School. She and her team worked tirelessly to make that goal a reality and now the school has been recognized by the state of California as a Gold Ribbon School for pushing itself to ensure its students receive a truly world class education. Hankey has accomplished something that no other school has yet to do in south Orange County and I am extremely proud of them.”