October 4, 2011 > Improvement celebrated
Submitted By Irma Torres-Fitzsimons
The Burbank Elementary community celebrated student achievement and school-wide success on September 23, 2011. The elementary school's Academic Performance Index (API) score increased from 716 to 795 this year - an improvement of 79 points - making it one of the top performing schools in Hayward Unified School District (HUSD). Until two years ago, Burbank had been one of the poorest performing schools in the district for several years. How was the turnaround achieved? A more strategic approach to instruction was adopted, students were instilled with a culture of giving their "best to the test" and creative incentives were introduced.
Students watched eagerly as their Assistant Principal Mr. Wilson, teachers and staff climbed into a dunk tank and let students hurl balls to activate the release mechanism. More than 350 students received awards for their improvement and their achievements on the California Standards test (CST) last Spring and each had a chance to dunk a teacher or staff member.
HUSD Executive Director of Academic Affairs Lety Salinas and her husband Hayward Councilman Mark Salinas, who gave the students a few words of inspiration, were among the guests in attendance at Burbank Elementary's CST Celebration and Awards Assembly.