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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.
Golden Valley Middle School

Redesignated: 2021, 2024

Designated 2018

San Bernardino City Unified School District

San Bernardino County

Gabriel Diaz, Principal

3900 N. Waterman Avenue, San Bernardino, CA 92404


School Characteristics

Community: Urban; Enrollment: 883; Grade Levels: 6-8; School Schedule: Six period rotating schedule with locked 5th period. Early release on Monday for staff collaboration. Sixth grade has two-teacher interdisciplinary teams. Seventh and 8th grade are divided into four teacher teams; teams have common prep period.

School Demographics

Free/reduced lunch: 90%; English learners: 19%

Replicable Practices

  • Golden Valley utilizes lesson study cycles to improve instruction and make decisions about student learning. Teachers develop standards and rubrics which support the district’s “rigorous curriculum design units” and modify them to meet students’ needs.

  • Using the gradual release of responsibility model, teachers in all content areas use close reading strategies to engage with both literary and informational texts. Teachers in all content areas have been trained in and utilize AVID strategies.

  • 1:1 technology implementation allows students to collaborate in real time, create and work problems digitally, do research, and effectively utilize district instructional software.

  • Staff meets each Monday for 90 minutes to participate in professional development and collaborate with their PLC’s. In addition, every week administration pays each department for one hour of afterschool planning or collaboration to enhance instruction.

  • Grade level interdisciplinary teaming allows for students and staff to build relationships, participate in competitions, participate in cross-curricular units, and enhance respect for one another.

  • A strong, established PBIS program also contributes to a positive school culture. In addition, the “Knight’s Roundtable” encourages teams to make positive contacts with students and families monthly.

  • Golden Valley’s after school program, C.A.P.S., provides students a variety of engaging and motivating experiences such as Mouse Squad, tutoring, sports, and robotics which supplement their elective offerings during the school day.

  • Weekly, students who demonstrate positive practices are invited to the “Work Café,” which provides a space during lunch for students to enjoy a comfortable atmosphere complete with work stations, board games, a ping pong table, and entertainment. This coupled with awards such as the Knight’s Award, Principal’s Award and other recognitions contribute to a positive school climate.

  • School staff and counselors offer a variety of health screenings, therapy and mental health providers, transportation services, shelters, food banks, and other resources to parents and community members. In addition, parenting workshops are offered monthly in the computer lab helping to increase parent access to resources to support their students.

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