HomeSchools & YouthSMUSD Remains Top Performer Under New Accountability System

SMUSD Remains Top Performer Under New Accountability System

The San Marino Unified School District remains a top performing school district in California according to the California Department of Education’s new accountability system.

The new accountability system replaced the Academic Performance Index, or API, which ranked the district as the top performing school district in the state for 14 consecutive years.

“The San Marino Unified School District should be very proud of these performance levels,” said Superintendent Dr. Alex Cherniss in a news release issued by the district on Wednesday.

“We already perform at very high levels yet we manage to continuously improve,” he added.

Board President, C. Joseph Chang said, “Congratulations to every teacher, administrator, staff member, and parent for this remarkable success. And special congratulations to our students who consistently show that they are the best!”

The new system uses chronic absenteeism, the district’s suspension and graduation rates, English learner progress, mathematics, English language arts, and college and career data as indicators.

SMUSD achieved the highest level—color blue—on all indicators, except for its suspension rate, which the state said was low.

“Already low at 1.1 percent, the district improved its suspension rate with a slight 0.3 percent decline,” read the news release.

College, career and chronic absenteeism data were unavailable.

However, the news release stated, “As SMUSD has historically had low chronic absenteeism and high college placement statistics, it is expected that the district will meet or exceed the state goal in these areas as well.”

The full accountability report can be accessed at

School Board Meeting

The San Marino School Board approved the second interim report of the San Marino Unified School District’s 2017-18 school year budget.

Assistant Superintendent of Business Services Julie Boucher said the district is at 96 percent of the funding level it was at before the Great Recession in 2007. However, Boucher said, a review of all budget factors revealed a $2 million budget gap.

“We’re hoping it can be minimized with the May revise,” she added, referring to Gov. Jerry Brown’s May budget proposal for the state.

The board also unanimously approved one-time, one percent salary increases for teachers, classified staff, management and administration and the superintendent.

The increase is based on 2016-17 school year salaries and will only be in effect during the 2016-17 school year, Assistant Superintendent of Human Resources Linda de la Torre said.

She added that the district and the San Marino Teachers’ Association agreed to an academic calendar for the upcoming two school years. The board approved the calendar with a unanimous vote.

The board also unanimously approved the district’s negotiating position with the San Marino Teachers’ Association.


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