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California Schools to Watch

2023 California Schools to Watch

Congratulations to the 77 California middle-grades schools that have been recognized by the
California Schools to Watch program for 2023! There are 36 new California Schools to Watch this year.

Potential 2024 School to Watch
Does your middle school, K-8 school, traditional school, or public charter school serve middle-grades students exceptionally well? Application for 2024 is coming soon!


Applying is free and easy. Be recognized and share your site’s best practices with other educators!

Current Schools to Watch

  • Renew Your Schools to Watch membership
    Annual membership is required. Renew now! Important: Only already-designated Schools to Watch should purchase a Schools to Watch membership.

  • Redesignate as a School to Watch
    Every three years, Schools to Watch reapply to ensure growth is continuing. This year, reapplying is simpler than ever! Visit the Schools to Watch redesignation page

See California Schools to Watch

Browse over 150 schools in the network.

About Schools to Watch
Schools to Watch is a national network of over 600 schools in 17 states. California is the largest state participant. Schools that apply to become Schools to Watch in the fall submit an application that is reviewed by experienced middle-grades experts in their state. If the application is approved, the school hosts a validation visit (the visit may be virtual due to COVID-19 this school year). If the school meets the qualifications, the school becomes a California School to Watch in March and a National School to Watch in June. 

The California Schools to Watch program is operated by:

Lead Agencies

  • California League of Schools 

  • California Department of Education

Program Partners

  • California Middle Grades Alliance, a partnership of CDE, CLS, and:

    • Association of California School Administrators (ACSA)

    • Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID)

    • Curriculum and Instruction Steering Committee (CISC) of California County Superintendents

    • Educational Services Association (CCESA)

    • California Middle Grades Partnership Network (CMGPN)

    • California School Boards Association (CSBA)

    • California Parent Teachers Association (CAPTA)

    • California Teachers Association (CTA)

    • Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs (GEAR UP)

  • National Forum to Accelerate Middle-Grades Reform

  • California Schools to Watch Model Schools

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