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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.
Sequoia Middle School - Fontana

Redesignated: 2021, 2024

Designated 2018

Fontana Unified School District

San Bernardino County

Monica Young, Principal

9452 Hemlock Avenue, Fontana, CA 92335

(909) 357-5400

School Characteristics

Community: Suburban; Enrollment: 1,149; Grade Levels: 7-8. School Schedule: Six-period day with early release on Wednesday for staff collaboration.

School Demographics

Free/reduced lunch; 87%; English learners; 28%

Replicable Practices

  • Sequoia’s most important initiative is “first best instruction,” however, students in need of additional support can access AVID classes at both grade levels, Read 180 and Math 180 classes as well as tutoring before and after school.

  • Working with T-4 Learning teachers are trained in instructional strategies for increased student engagement and mastery of standards, writing and executing daily lesson objectives, and employing strategies for checking for understanding. In addition, training is provided to support the utilization of technology with new curriculum.

  • Core teachers are given four release days immediately after testing to review common assessments and to plan next steps, re-teaching, and adjustments to instruction.

  • To enhance facilitation of Sequoia’s PBIS school-wide implementation the school created “Camp Sequoia” on the first day of school. Students, remaining with their first period teacher, participate in expectation walks throughout the campus, team building activities, classroom instruction in AVID strategies, and other school business protocols.

  • In addition to an array of electives students participate in a variety of clubs including: Archery Sport, Drama Club, Lego Club, Gay-Straight Alliance, Breakfast Club, Crochet Club, Lunch Bunch and Dance Club. Physical education teachers support students by participating in Intermural sports activities within the city.

  • Key instructional practices determined as focus areas for the school are academic discourse and close reading in all content areas.

  • In addition to offering multiple AVID electives at all grade levels, staff have committed to the implementation of AVID strategies school-wide. All students are directly taught key AVID strategies to support learning. Multiple staff will attend the two-day AVID “Path to Schoolwide” training.

  • With support from the administration and the instructional leadership team, teachers are given opportunities for peer observations which include coaching.

  • Gifted students receive a differentiated curriculum during the school day and can take enrichment classes after school. In addition, students may access district-sponsored classes on Saturdays and after school.

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