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The College Application Handbook

Introducing the first edition of El Cerrito High School's College Application Handbook. This comprehensive guide provides information, advice and resources to help make the 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. Continue Reading→

Principal’s Message: Week of April 26th

In an effort to keep finding ways to improve safety on campus we are asking families that want to drop something off to students throughout the course of the school day (including lunch) to come to the main office to meet your student. Starting Monday, we will be asking students not to go to the front or sides of the school to pick things up from vehicles. We appreciate your support with this process.

Starting this week, 11th graders at ECHS will be taking the online SBAC state test. The online SBAC state test takes 5 days to complete; however, students will only test one block period each day of testing. Eleventh grade students who DON’T have a history class this semester will begin testing tomorrow. All other 11th grade students who are currently enrolled in a history class will start SBAC testing in mid-May. There are testing rosters posted around the school that tell students what block they are testing next week, where they are testing, and who is proctoring their test. Because the online SBAC test is taken during your student’s classes, it does NOT disrupt the regular school schedule in any way. Therefore next week your 11th grade student should arrive at and leave school at their normal times. If you’d like to review the SBAC testing schedule from home, it is posted on the school website and the E-Tree.

Please note that 10th grade students will take the Life Science CST test Wednesday, May 6th. More information regarding the CST Life Science test will be communicated in next week’s principal’s message. If you have any questions regarding CST or SBAC testing please call Assistant Principal Winn at extension 11564.

We will have a School Site Council meeting from 4 to 5:30 Monday in the library. We will begin LCAP budgetary planning for the 15-16 school year.

Congratulations to our bridge competition winners and a special thank you to Ms. O’Connor for coordinating and facilitating the on-site competition and entering the students in the Bay Area competition!  The group of Feji Etibo, Leslie Herrera, Ursula Lochner Bravo, and Charlotte Pine won the Communication Award for having the best written essay and oral presentation.  The group of Luisa Bezerra, Elaine Chu, Emily Leung, Julia Mason, and Natalie Meacham won first place for the Montreal scenario!

Former Physics and AP Chemistry students will set up a mini-Exploratorium and serve as docents for students from Fairmont, Harding, and Stege schools this week.  The event is 6:30 – 9:00 pm on Tuesday, April 28 in the Fairmont School multipurpose room.  Students can earn Service Learning Credit.

On April 18th, the East Bay Rough Riders Youth Dragon Boat Team participated in the 14th Annual CDBA Youth Race, the largest youth dragon boat competition in North America.  The Rough Riders are made up of paddlers from all over the East Bay and include 37 of our own Gauchos. The Rough Riders turned heads with their rapid growth and improvement, earning 2nd and 4th places in their division last Saturday.

After the State Qualifying rounds in debate last weekend, Lev Corne and Leo Gould are now ranked number 2 in the State of California in Policy Debate. All of our debaters did very well and the team earned a 13th place ranking in the state for the Sweepstakes Award.

Thank you to the City of El Cerrito for working with our Media and IT academies as they will be interviewing many of our academy students this week for internships at City Hall.

The District-Wide annual student art show is taking place at the Richmond Art Center from March 22 to May 24th. About 60 works of art from EC students are displayed. Thanks to the support of our Visual Arts teachers – Ms. Coleman, Mr. Grover, Ms. Jun and Ms. Shah. Additionally, 3 ceramics students were recognized and published by KQED arts – those students are Sonam Raj, Adamary Leon, and Francisco Catig. This is the web address if you want to check out some of the work!!

http://ww2.kqed.org/arts/2015/03/30/50-years-of-honoring-young-artists-at-the-richmond-art-center/

Academic counselors have now been to every 2nd block class to support students in filling out course request sheets for the 2015-2016 school year. You and your student may now log in to powerschool using your normal powerschool login to see the requests that have been entered and make any necessary adjustments. Please note that courses that are by audition only and academy electives have not yet been added to students’ requests and are not available on the student selection screens. Please communicate directly with the instructor if you would like to add one of these courses. These courses will be added by the counseling department based on the lists provided by the instructors. If you do not have access to your powerschool log in information please contact the main office or have your student stop by the office to pick up instructions for student access. Please note that passwords are case sensitive. Once you have logged in, you will need to click on the button entitled “class registration” to view the registration options. If you have any questions about this process, please contact your students’ counselor or Mr. Fleischman. The window for class adjustments will remain open until Tuesday, March 31.

The District has finalized the start-of-school schedule for next year. The first day of school will be on Monday, August 24th. Walkthrough registration for ECHS will begin on August 11th for 9th graders, the 12th for 10th graders, the 13th for 11th graders, and the 14th for 12th graders.

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.

Please mark your calendars for this year’s graduation ceremony. The ECHS class of 2015 will be graduating on Saturday, June 6th at 12:30 PM at the Richmond Auditorium.

I am pleased to announce that our School Climate Report Card is out for this year and our scores continue to rise. This data is based on The California Healthy Kids Surveys that our students complete in the Spring and our Truancy data. When ranked with similar schools in California, ECHS is currently sitting at the 91st percentile. Thank you for your feedback Gauchos!!

Please do not forget to complete your “Online Meal Application” so that your student can receive free or reduced lunch.  The application is quick and easy to fill out and can be accessed directly from the home page of the West Contra Costa Unified School District website under “Online Meal Application”.  The application must be completed annually so if you have not renewed you application from last year please do it as soon as possible as last year’s service will expire at the end of September.

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. With the warm weather right now it is particularly important that everyone dress appropriately.  More specifically, all shirts should be long enough to overlap a pair of pants or a skirt.  Students not dressed appropriately will be required to wear a loaner shirt or call home for a change of clothes.  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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