Northwood Elementary School
A National Blue Ribbon and California Distinguished School
28 Carson, Irvine, CA 92620
Phone: (949) 936-5950
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“Our mission is to prepare our students to face the challenges of the future and be their best selves.”
A Snapshot of Northwood Elementary School: Northwood Elementary is a neighborhood school that opened its doors in 1980. Throughout its 30 year history, Northwood Elementary has enjoyed impressive academic growth and strong community support. Located in Irvine, California, Northwood Elementary School serves 535 students, kindergarten through sixth grade, in the heart of suburban Orange County. Established in 1980, Northwood Elementary serves a richly diverse student population with students representing approximately 20 different language groups. Over the past decade Northwood’s Academic Performance Index (API) has shown continuous improvement, climbing from 790 in 1999, to 944 in 2012, a growth of 154 points. Northwood Elementary became a California Distinguished School in 2002, a testimony to the devotion of Northwood’s talented teachers, diligent students, and caring community. In 2008, the U.S. Department of Education awarded Northwood Elementary the prestigious Blue Ribbon Award for its high academic performance. Additionally, the O.C. Register has also ranked Northwood as a top 10 elementary school in Orange County for the last four consecutive years (2010, 2011, 2012, 2013).
Mission: At Northwood Elementary School, our dedicated teaching staff, hardworking students, and supportive parents hold high expectations for student success. Our mission statement answers the question, “Why do we exist?” and speaks to our high expectations: “Our Mission is to prepare our students to face the challenges of the future and become their best selves." The first part of our mission statement, “preparing our students to face the challenges of the future” addresses the need to provide our students the knowledge base and critical thinking skills they need to succeed in a rapidly changing world. The second part our mission statement, “becoming their best selves” speaks to our necessity to nurture ethical and socially responsible citizens. By holding true to our mission, we ensure that our students’ future will be full of promise.
Vision: In determining our school vision, we asked ourselves the question “What kind of school do we wish to become?” To create our vision, we enlisted the help of students and parents to join with our teachers in crafting a vision for our future. After bringing all stakeholders to the table, three main areas of focus emerged from our visioning process: (1) Fostering a Love of Learning, (2) Valuing Individuals, and (3) Enriching Learning. We continuously foster a love of learning in our school by (a) celebrating accomplishments, (b) motivating student success, (c) teaching with enthusiasm, and (d) giving students meaningful project-based learning tasks. We enrich learning by (a) creating extended learning programs, (b) establishing interest-based clubs, (c) utilizing computer-aided programs, and (d) fostering community service oriented activities. To value individuals we (a) promote character values, (b) praise effort and recognize good work, (c) differentiate instruction, and (d) promote personal goal-setting. As a community of learners, we constructed a compelling picture of what Northwood Elementary could be, and by working together as parents, teachers and students, we have taken our school from good to great. Northwood Elementary embodies the spirit of No Child Left Behind by: (a) identifying all students with learning difficulties, (b) providing research-based interventions (e.g., Response to Instruction and extended learning opportunities) to help those with learning difficulties improve, (c) using proficiency data to measure learning levels, (d) setting individualized learning goals, and (e) continuously improving instruction. In so doing, we endeavor to have all our students perform at high levels.