Los Cerros Middle School is a highly ranked, public school located in Danville, CA. It has 646 grade 6-8 students, with a 25-1 student-teacher ratio. 70 percent of students are at least proficient in mathematics and 78 percent in reading, according to state test scores. Los Cerros was named Distinguished School of California and National Blue Ribbon School of 2009.
The goal of Los Cerros Middle School is to motivate and prepare all students to apply the learned academic knowledge, skills, and character qualities needed to become innovative problem solvers, and to achieve personal success as responsible citizens who contribute responsibly to our community and digital environment.
The signature model for Los Cerros is Pathways to Personalized Learning (PPL). PPL offers a number of elective CTE Pathway and STEAM courses for students to explore and learn the skills required for the future, including the integration of a wide range of student-use technologies. Teachers spent time working with colleagues and attending conferences on professional development to enhance learning outcomes and projects which optimize student interests and opportunities. We decided four years ago that we wanted to incorporate more inclusive and engaging elective courses that gave students the opportunity to learn the skills for the future. By way of course reviews, group engagement, CTE Pathway and STEAM standards, we continually change the course work and expectations for students to suit their needs. The module system, project-based learning, brings perceptions of the course work in which students pick their interest and carry out tasks to achieve a goal.
For the CTE Pathway and STEAM elective courses, Los Cerros is distinguished along with the latest technology by Pathways for Customized Learning (PPL). Students take the wheel elective courses in sixth grade which include robotics/technology and painting. Students select their elective direction from there, including Robotics, Advance Engineering, Computer Projects, Computer Science and/or Art 1, Art 2, Advanced Art, Digital Media Graphic Design. These courses have set expectations and, upon promotion from Los Cerros, establish path opportunities for the students. Other courses related to this direction include two elective science courses; 21st Century Architecture and Forensics, and Scholarly Elective Media Literacy. They have realigned the course work over the last four years to demonstrate the advancement of each class and provide students with the skills required for high school, college or career.