The Excellence in Education and Equity Award replaces the County Office of Education’s Teacher of the Year Award, which attracted few applicants. Many teachers said they didn’t pursue the award because they believed their successful initiatives often involved other teachers and school staff. Thus, the County Office decided to celebrate this teamwork approach to education and honor a program each year that reflects the County Office’s vision of Excellence and Equity in Education and its work to close the achievement and opportunity gaps in the County.
The Excellence in Education and Equity award winner is selected from recipients of the San Mateo County School Boards Association's J. Russell Kent Award.
2019: The Hoover Community School Boys & Girls Club After School Program (Redwood City School District)
Unlike many after-school programs, the Hoover Community School program is aligned with the school district’s Local Control Action Plan’s (LCAP) goals and is an extension of the learning day. The school and Redwood City School District share resources, curriculum, data, and staff training with the Boys and Girls Club staff. While the program is still relatively new, students in the lower-level grades are starting to show improvement in reading proficiency, a key factor in future academic achievement.
2018: McKinley Institute of Technology's Family Literacy Initiative (Redwood City School District)
The McKinley Institute of Technology (MIT) Literacy Initiative was designed and created as a school-wide program to meet the individual literacy needs of our students and community. Components of the initiative include dedicated daily time for in-class instruction, professional learning for staff as well as family education opportunities. The initiative has already proven successful based on significant increases in student achievement according to multiple measures: the 2016-17 CAASPP assessments and high school placement assessments. The MIT Family Literacy Initiative is a partnership with parents focused on helping families understand how technology is used in learning, by providing monthly parent technology workshops, curriculum focus classroom walkthroughs, parent monthly leadership workshops, and access to college education classes for parents.