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ALLmeansALL! Walnut Valley USD is proud to be a National Schools to Watch District with numerous National Blue Ribbon, California Gold Ribbon, and California Distinguished School awards. Our motto is KIDS FIRST... Every Student, Every Day!  

South Pointe honored as ‘School to Watch’

NEWS                                                                                       Walnut Valley Unified School District

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                       880 S. Lemon Avenue

February 20, 2016                                                                    Walnut, CA 91789



Kelli Gile, Office of Community Resources

(909) 595-1261 ext. 31204


South Pointe honored as ‘School to Watch’

High Performing Model Middle School

DIAMOND BAR, CA—It was a day of celebration, as South Pointe Middle School joined an elite cadre of official Schools to Watch on February 18.

Students, parents, staff, district officials, and community members came together to mark the school’s designation as a model school in the 2015-16 Schools to Watch-Taking Center Stage (STW-TCS) program.

Schools to Watch, which are also recognized at both the state and national level, become examples for middle schools across the country.

“This is a wonderful recognition,” said Superintendent Dr. Robert Taylor. “On behalf of the School District and Board of Trustees, we’re so proud of all of you in the room that made this possible.”

This year, 13 high-performing middle schools in California were selected for demonstrating academic excellence, developmental responsiveness, and social equity.

A total of only 78 high-performing schools, out of over 1,300 middle schools in the state, are now Schools to Watch.

Additionally, South Pointe is now among only 450 middle schools in the country deemed as Schools to Watch, out of over 23,000 middle schools.

Impressive student performances were featured by the choir and percussion band, under the direction of Robin Wadsworth and Susan Willmering.

“South Pointe offers such a well-rounded experience for kids,” Taylor added. Schools to Watch host visitors who are looking to learn best practices they can use to improve their middle grade schools and close the achievement gap.

Officials representing L.A. County Supervisor Don Knabe, Senator Bob Huff, Assembly Member Ling Ling Chang, City of Diamond Bar, and City of Walnut presented certificates of special recognition during the program.

After the ceremony, students and staff cheered in classrooms as the Schools to Watch banner was presented during the KSPS live morning news show.

“We are confident that you students will go on from here and do great things in the future,” said STW-TCS co-director Dr. Irvin Howard unveiling the award with Principal Susan Arzola.

“That’s what we know about Schools to Watch – they are special places that really make your education even more special and your future even brighter!”

“Students, you make this an amazing place where we’re all proud to teach and learn together,” Arzola said during the broadcast. “Teachers, we know that you are on the cutting edge and that you are always looking for ways to inspire your students!”

South Pointe will be recognized at the state level in Sacramento on February 25 and at the national level in Washington D.C. this summer.

The Schools to Watch program is sponsored by the California League of Middle Schools and the California Department of Education, in partnership with the California Middle Grades Alliance.


South Pointe Middle School became an official School to Watch during a celebration held on February 18. Schools to Watch co-director Dr. Irvin Howard presented a banner to Principal Susan Arzola during a live student news show. 

South Pointe Middle School students, parents, staff, district officials, and special guests celebrate the 2016 School to Watch award. 

South Pointe Middle School has been named a 2016 School to Watch. Shown: Trustee Cindy Ruiz, Superintendent Dr. Robert Taylor, Principal Susan Arzola, STW-TCS co-director Dr. Irvin Howard, Trustee Larry Redinger, and leadership students. 

South Pointe choir and band perform during the Model School celebration on February 18.