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California Schools to Watch is a statewide program implemented by the California League
of Educators, California Department of Education, California Middle Grades Alliance, National Forum, and the California Schools to Watch model schools.
Elizabeth Pinkerton Middle School

Redesignated: 2017, 2020, 2023

Designated 2014

Elk Grove Unified School District

Sacramento County

Kimberlee Wallace, Principal

8365 Whitelock Parkway, Elk Grove, CA 95757


School Characteristics

Community: Suburban; Enrollment: 1135; Grade Levels: 7-8; School Schedule: Four x Four Block Schedule with English and math instruction every day. Students Loop with teachers, housed in teams. Advocacy/Advisory twice per week for 35 minutes.

School Demographics

.35% American Indian; 19% Asian; 11.6% African American; 9.7% Filipino; 23.6% Hispanic; .79% Pacific Islander; 24.8% White; 10.16% Other. 20% Free/Reduced lunch. 5.6% English Learners

Replicable Practices

  • Students are grouped into interdisciplinary teams supported by a counselor and a vice-principal, and loop from seventh to eighth grade with the same set of teachers.

  • Late start on Wednesday provides time for departments to meet as learning communities to analyze data from common assessments and plan instruction. In addition, teams meet once a week during their common prep to discuss team concerns, student concerns, and incentives for students.

  • Additional support for struggling students is provided through EL clusters, Extended Day three days per week, Peer Tutors, Special Education co-teaching, AVID, and “Wolfpack Time” held twice a week after first period.

  • Extensive elective offerings all incorporate components of relevant history, such as the evolution of technology in Tech class or the history of music in band class.

  • Differentiation of instruction as well as Honors courses in Humanities, Math, and Science provide opportunities for students to accelerate their learning. Summer school also offers multiple enrichment opportunities.

  • Students have access to a computer lab for independent work and mobile Chromebook carts are used in Humanities, math, and elective classrooms regularly. Students can also take Computer Aided Drafting, Computer Programming, and all are introduced to the Microsoft Office suite.

  • Valuing continuous learning the science department continues to participate in a three-year research-based professional development grant which links best practices to science content. The math department is participating in the “M3-Making Math Meaningful Grant”. All staff participate in frequent staff development through workshops, release days for collaboration, articulation days, and book studies.

  • The Pinkerton math department gives collaboratively created common assessments to all students weekly and analyzes results to determine the level of mastery and drive future instruction

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