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An Updated Version of the 2nd Edition of the College Application Handbook

An updated version of the second edition of the El Cerrito High School's College Application Handbook 2015 is now available for viewing and download! This comprehensive guide provides information, advice and resources to help make the college application and admission process more accessible to students and families. Find the handbook in the Counseling menu above or click the link in the sidebar. This edition includes updated information and new sections and resources. Continue Reading→

Principal’s Message: Week of February 7th

We will have a special team of visitors from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges visiting the school on Monday February 8 and Tuesday February 9.  They will be checking out our school and the progress we’ve made in improving our school over the last 3 years.  If you happen to see these visitors, please give them a warm Gaucho welcome!

If you are a Senior that lives in Richmond then please listen carefully about information regarding “The Richmond Promise”. There will be a meeting Monday, February 8th at 6:00 PM in the theater for all Seniors and their families regarding the Richmond Promise. Students that are Richmond residents may be eligible for $1,500 a year for four years to help support college fees. Applications are due March 17th and the process is extremely easy to qualify for the money. There will be an information session this Monday evening at 6:00 PM in the theater and our counseling team will be following up with Richmond residents to help ensure everyone that qualifies completes applications. All are welcome to attend, but it is a high priority for Seniors that want money to support community college or a 4-year college. Additional information will be available in the front office and student services.

We will have a school-wide lesson on Friday in second block classes to get students ready for the 16-17 schedule selection process that will begin when we return from break. Students will have an opportunity to review transcripts and find out what classes they are eligible to sign up for. We will not have an altered schedule for the lesson.

Our Boys and Girls Basketball programs will celebrate their Senior Nights this week. The Boys will host St. Mary’s High School on Tuesday night at 7 PM and the Girls will host Richmond High School on Friday night at 7 PM. Senior breakfast will take place this Thursday morning. The event starts at 7:30 AM in the cafeteria with all sorts of great food and fun events for the Seniors.

Congratulations to the Junior class for winning the 2016 Soccer tournament and beating the staff in the grand finale. Thank you to the Leadership class and the Latino Student Union for sponsoring the event.

Next week is the President’s week break. The main office will be closed for the entire break.

Summer School applications will be available this week and must be turned in to counselors by Thursday, February 11th. If your student failed any courses this year we strongly recommend completing an application. The counseling team will be calling students in to help with this process.

I am proud to announce that one of our staff members, Ron Driskell has received the “You Make a Difference Award 2016” for making outstanding contributions to the lives of students with special needs in West County.

The annual County Mock Trial competition is under way. Good luck to our mock trial team. If you are interested in knowing more about mock trial please contact Mr. Jimenez in Room C200.

Our music program has been busy as of late. Last week the Jazz Ensemble took 2nd place in the AA division at the Folsom Jazz Festival and this Saturday, February 6th, they will be hosting the second annual El Cerrito High School Jazz Festival that will feature top high school jazz programs from throughout Northern California. The event will be headlined by the nationally acclaimed John Daversa Small Band in a concert beginning at 7 PM. Festival performances begin at 9 AM and the ECHS Jazz Ensemble will perform at 10 AM.

Good luck to our soccer programs as they compete in the playoffs.

Juniors should start to narrow down specifics about college and post-high school plans over the next couple of months. Please reference the junior checklist in the college handbook on the website to see what you should consider having completed by the end of this school-year.

All seniors planning to attend a four-year college or two-year college should start the FAFSA completion process as soon as possible. FAFSA stands for Free Application for Federal Student Aid.  The majority of our students qualify for all or some form of aid so it is extremely important that these applications are completed.  The counseling team will be checking in with seniors and providing a variety of supports to ensure everyone that is eligible completes the application.  The absolute deadline for FAFSA applications is March 2nd but we recommend that students and families plan to have applications done by February 15th.  Don’t forget that on the school website you can always check The College Application Handbook if you have questions or need to know how to find other resources.

Winter sports are in full swing so make sure to come out and support girls and boys soccer and basketball.

If you missed College Night you can access the Powerpoint on our school website under the counseling tab.

The graduation date for the class of 2016 has been set!! I am happy to inform everyone that the 2016 graduation ceremony will take place on Friday, June 10th at 7:00 PM at the Richmond Convention Center.

Did you know that your student may be eligible to receive FREE dental services at our school health center, the James Morehouse Project? Services include dental exams, cleanings, x-rays and fillings and are provided by Contra Costa Health Services. If you would like your student to receive dental services at the JMP, please call Luisa Arguello-Mendoza at 510-965-5313. That phone number is 510-965-5313, or have your student contact the JMP directly for more information.

I would like to remind everyone of a couple of important school policies.  Students should have ID’s with them at all times.  ID’s not only help support the safety of the campus, but they are also required in the cafeteria for students to receive free and reduced lunch.  It is also important to remember that El Cerrito High School has a closed campus policy so at no point should a student leave campus during the school day without being signed out of the main office.  This also means that students are not allowed to leave campus during lunch.  Please remind your student of these policies as we would like to avoid students missing instructional time for not meeting these expectations.

Please help keep our school and community looking beautiful by not leaving trash laying around on campus or when you are walking through the community.  We are extremely fortunate to have such a beautiful facility, but it takes all of us working together to ensure it stays that way.

Sincerely,
Principal Luongo


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