Ask any reporter-- going to a high school to find a student who is articulate can sometimes be a challenge.
Today, I ventured onto the campus of Whitney High School in Cerritos.
I interviewed four students, each one spoke intelligently, and with clarity. But, these aren't typical students because they don't go to a typical high school.
Whitney has been distinguished as a national Blue Ribbon school multiple times and ranked the number one high school in the state by Newsweek more than once. Today, US News and World Report magazine announced Whitney again took the top spot for California.
I asked Principal Bryan Glonchak how many times Whitney has received this kind of recognition and he was hard pressed to come up with a number.
What does it take to be the top public high school in the state? It starts with topnotch students. Students attend Whitney from grades 7 to 12. Only the top tier 6th graders are *invited to enroll. All tolled, there are about a thousand students. Class size is typical, about 35 students per teacher, but the curriculum isn't.
Hannah Casady told me, this semester she's taking, "AP Language, AP US History, Pre-calculus, physics then afterwards, Theater and sports wise, I have track and cheerleading. "
We popped into a 7th grade biology class. Today the class was taught by Saumitra Kelkar. He's a senior, headed for UC Berkley with an aspiration for a career in habitat restoration and protection. Part of the class, included a short field trip to his drought tolerant garden; a demonstration of "ecological succession" meaning the plants, feed the bugs, the bugs feed the birds and then the plants die and replenish the soil. Extraordinary student? Yes. But at Whitney every student is extraordinary.
All the students graduate, 93% go onto a four-year college or university.
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