ASCD California

California Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (CASCD)

The California Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (CASCD) is a diverse community of educators throughout California committed to promoting exemplary practices that ensure all learners reach their fullest potential.

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California ASCD is pleased to introduce our new Board members who joined us July 1, 2021, Dr. Michele Bowers and Tracy Robinson along with our newest member, Derrick Lawson on 9/1/2021.  We are honored to have them join the CASCD Board of Directors.  

Dr. Michele Bowers is the Superintendent in Lancaster School District serving students in preK-8.  In 2020 she was named the Los Angeles County Superintendent of the Year by the Los Angeles County Office of Education.  She has more than 20 years experience in public education.  In addition to her job as a Superintendent, Dr. Bowers serves on the board of the California Association of African-American Administrators and Superintendents and is the state chair on absenteeism and truancy.

Tracy Robinson is joining the CASCD Board through our partnership with Association of California School Administrators.  She is the new Senior Director of Educational Services.  Ms. Robinson also comes to us with experience from throughout the state and with a broad understanding of preK-12 teaching and leading background.

Newest Board member as of September 1, 2021:

Derrick Lawson:  CASCD is pleased to announce the selection of Derrick Lawson, Principal at Indio High School in the Desert Sands Unified School District, as the newest member of the CASCD Board of Directors. Mr. Lawson has a Master's degree in Educational leadership and Administration as well as 30+ years of experience as an educator. In 2021, he received the Distinguished Service Award from NASSP. He was also recognized as the California Middle School Principal of the Year in 2012 and served as Region XIX President in 2014. CASCD is pleased to welcome Mr. Lawson to the CASCD Board.

We are delighted to have these  exemplary educators join us to bring their expertise and perspective to the critical work of CASCD.  Welcome Ms. Robinson, Dr. Bowers and Derrick Lawson!  We look forward to an exhilarating 2021-2022 school year.

Your input matters to us!  CASCD exists to support you!  Click here to share your thoughts!  

NEWS!  See below for Information on current events, upcoming professional development offerings, and announcements!

Teaching, Learning, and Leadership

Engaging Students

in Civics Education

Video: Public Spirit in the Classroom (Educational Leadership)
Douglas Fisher and Nancy Frey
How schools can teach the common good.

Seizing the Civic Education Moment (Educational Leadership)
Andrew Tripodo and Robert Pondiscio
To bolster students’ understanding of politics and democracy, schools must couple experiential projects with in-depth content study.

Teaching Democracy in Polarizing Times (Educational Leadership)
Jacob Fay and Meira Levinson

What Kind of Citizens Do We Need? (Educational Leadership)
Joel Westheimer
Democracies make special demands on their citizens. Schools must prepare young people to meet those demands.

Facilitating Classroom Discussions

Courageous Conversations for Equity and Agency (Educational Leadership)
Anne Vilen and Ron Berger
Grappling with tough topics strengthens students’ discussion skills, broadens their perspectives, and empowers them as civic actors.

Questioning for Classroom Discussion: Purposeful Speaking, Engaged Listening, Deep Thinking (ASCD Book)
Jackie Acree Walsh and Beth Dankert Sattes
What type of questioning invigorates and sustains productive discussions?

The Power of Protocols for Equity (Educational Leadership)
Zaretta Hammond
Structured protocols can help teachers ensure equitable participation and create more culturally responsive discussions.

How to Talk, and Listen, to Your Students During Times of Crisis (Blog)
Aleta Margolis
Teachers need to talk with their students about the unprecedented events we’re experiencing, about the history that’s being made right at this moment.

Discovery Education is supporting and spotlighting the importance and value of diversity in STEM:

"With the STEM Careers Coalition resources and professional learning opportunities, my students get to meet diverse leaders in STEM. The student’s faces say it all: they see themselves in these leaders and know that they, too, can be STEM leaders,” said Michele Hutson, a 2nd Grade Teacher in the Santa Rosa County School District of Florida.

For more information about Discovery Education’s digital resources and professional learning services, visit, and stay connected with Discovery Education on social media through Twitter and LinkedIn.

Learn more here!

Grace Maliska
Discovery Education
Phone: 240-839-4239

Stephen Wakefield
Discovery Education
Phone: 202-316-6615

California Becomes First State in Nation to Announce COVID-19 Vaccine Will Be Added to List of Required School Vaccinations 

Students will be required to be vaccinated for in person learning starting the term following FDA full approval of the vaccine for their grade span (7-12 and k-6). Background ● California continues to lead the nation with the lowest COVID case rate, the lowest death rate, and the most vaccinations administered. The latest CDC data indicate that youth in California are being hospitalized at less than one-fourth the rate of states like Florida and less than one-half the rate of the nation as a whole. 1 ● This fall, millions of California students returned to their K-12 school classrooms. Thanks to California’s nation-leading measures aimed at keeping campuses safe and open, including universal masking, our state has not faced the same number of outbreaks seen in other parts of the country. ● California’s schools have been open for nearly a month longer than most other states, but have experienced school closures at a far lower rate. California educates approximately 12% of students in the nation, but California schools account for approximately 0.5% of school closures. And those closures have been localized to regions with lower vaccination rates. 2 2 (as of 10/1/2021)

● Educators, public health experts and parents know there is no substitute for in-person instruction, but we also can’t pretend the threat of COVID-19 and its variants are completely behind us. ● Schools are stepping up to keep students safe, and to meet their mental health, social-emotional, and academic needs like never before. The vast majority of schools report that 95-100% of students have opted to return in-person; over 95% of schools have expanded mental health services; nearly 83% have expanded academic supports like high-dose tutoring; and over 74% have expanded after-school programs. 3 ● We continue to urge everyone who is eligible to get vaccinated against COVID-19. Vaccines continue to be the best tool to end this pandemic once and for all. These vaccines are safe and effective, and the data has unequivocally shown that they prevent severe illness and death as a result of COVID-19 – nearly all of those who are ending up in ICU beds and dying are unvaccinated. School Vaccine Requirement ● California is taking bold steps to minimize the transmission of COVID-19. ● Governor Gavin Newsom is directing the California Department of Public Health to add the COVID-19 vaccine to other vaccinations required for in-person school attendance—such as measles, mumps, and rubella—pursuant to the Health and Safety Code sections 120325 - 120380. ● This will be accomplished by regulations promulgated pursuant to section 120335(b)(11), which authorizes vaccine requirements for “any other disease deemed appropriate” by CDPH. This is also consistent with the overall intent of the law to achieve “eventual achievement of total immunization” against dangerous childhood diseases. (HSC section 120325(a)). ● COVID-19 vaccine requirements will apply to all “pupil[s] of any private or public elementary or secondary school[s].” (HSC section 120335(b)). ● COVID-19 vaccine requirements will be phased-in by grade span, grades K-6 and 7-12 This will also promote smoother implementation. ● This mandate will be a condition of in-person attendance. (HSC section 120335(f)). A student who is not vaccinated may remain enrolled in independent study, but may not attend in-person instruction. ● Requirements established by regulation, not legislation, must be subject to exemptions “for both medical reasons and personal beliefs.” (HSC section 120338). 3 (see also ● The Governor has also directed that adults be held to at least the same standards as students for the COVID-19 vaccine. While currently, California requires all K-12 staff to verify their vaccination status or be tested weekly, all staff will be required to be vaccinated no later than when the requirement takes effect for students. 4 ● The current verify-or-test requirement for staff will be converted to a vaccine mandate no later than when the first phase of the student requirement becomes effective. ● Five districts nationwide -- all in California -- have moved forward with a student mandate (in the following order): Culver City Unified; LA Unified; Oakland Unified; Piedmont Unified; and San Diego Unified. Local public health and school officials are encouraged to move forward with their own vaccine requirements. ● While individual counties and schools may accelerate vaccine requirements, the state requirement will create a statewide standard to ensure all staff and students will be vaccinated. Timing ● Students will be required to be vaccinated for in person learning starting the term following FDA full approval of the vaccine for their grade span (7-12 and k-6). ● Upon full approval by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) of a vaccine for age groups within a grade span, CDPH will consider relevant recommendations from the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices of the United States Department of Health and Human Services, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and the American Academy of Family Physicians prior to implementing a requirement, as required by the Health and Safety Code section 120335(b)(11). ● CDPH will then initiate the rulemaking process, which includes public comment. Regulations promulgated pursuant to that process will also address many of the details of the requirement, including the scope of exemptions, etc. ● The regulations will take effect at the start of the following term, meaning either January 1st or July 1st, whichever comes first. (Education Code 37200). This will also give both parents and schools sufficient time to prepare and implement. ● Based on current projections for full approval for ages 12+, we anticipate the requirement would apply to grades 7-12 starting on July 1, 2022. ● Students who are under the age of full approval, but within the grade span, will be required to be vaccinated once they reach the age of full approval (with a reasonable period of time to receive both doses), consistent with existing procedures for other vaccines. 4 ers-and-school-staff-to-get-vaccinated

Professional Development Offerings


featuring Joe Marquez from Character Strong and Craig Wheaton from CASCD


Where we talk with Teachers and their Admin to get each other's take on a topic.

Click this link to join via Utube on Thursday, December 9th @ 4pm (PT)

Click this link to join via Facebook on Thursday, December 9th @ 4pm (PT)


CASCD & McREL will partner during winter 2022 to provide CASCD members with an opportunity to read the ASCD book "Learning That Sticks: A Brain-Based Model for K-12 Instructional Design and Delivery" and engage in conversation with authors Bryan Goodwin and Tonia Gibson during three online sessions of 45-60 minutes each.

Session 1:  January 27, 2022

Session 2:  February 24, 2022

Session 3:  March 23, 2022

Student Learning That Sticks: How to Spark Your Students’ Interest and Support Deep, Memorable Learning

Session 1:  Teaching Less, Learning More

Session 2:  Sparking Student Interest and Making Learning Stick

Session 3:  Supporting Deep, Meaningful, Lasting Learning

Check back for further details and registration information coming soon!

U.S. Department of Education selects two California principals for annual award

Two California principals are among the eight recipients of this year’s Terrel H. Bell Award, awarded to school leaders nationwide whose vision and collaborative leadership style have transformed their schools. They are Christy Flores, principal of Maude B. Davis Elementary School in Newport-Mesa Unified, and Sonia Anna Flores, principal of Dr. TJ Owens Gilroy Early College Academy in Gilroy Unified.

“Over the last 18 months, in the face of unprecedented circumstances, these school leaders have found creative ways to protect, nurture, and engage children, families, and school staff,” said U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona, in announcing the awards Thursday. “Bell awardees have worked tirelessly, investing every ounce of their energy and expertise in their schools and students.”

The award is named after Terrel Bell, the nation’s second secretary of education. Principals are nominated by their school communities during the final stages of the application process for National Blue Ribbon Schools, which recognize public and private elementary, middle and high schools based on their overall academic excellence or their progress in closing achievement gaps among student subgroups.

Sonia Flores has led the TJ Owens Gilroy Early College Academy for eight years. Located on the grounds of Gavilan Community College, the school enables students from diverse backgrounds to graduate with both a high school diploma and an associate degree or two years of college credit. As part of building a school community, all ninth through 11th graders during first period take academic prep, which provides peer tutoring, restorative justice led by an honors tribunal, and associated student body-led activities and assemblies.

Since 2013, Christy Flores has been principal of the Davis Magnet School, where she stresses building well-being, a growth mindset, relationships, empathy, and resilience, according to a U.S. Department of Education news release. Through the Davis Magnet Foundation, which she started, the school has been able to underwrite after-school robotics, a ceramics kiln, teacher assistants, grade level supports and a community garden

News Release. California Department of Education official seal. Tony Thurmond, State Superintendent of Public Instruction. 1430 N Street, Sacramento, CA 95814-5901, 916-319-0800,


CONTACT: Communications


PHONE: 916-319-0818

November 30, 2021



State Superintendent Tony Thurmond Announces Renaissance Digital Reading Partnership to Support Statewide Literacy Campaign

SACRAMENTO—State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond today announced a partnership with Renaissance that will provide unlimited access to myON digital books and daily news articles for all pre-K to grade twelve students in California from December 1, 2021, through January 31, 2022. 

This initiative aims to give students The Gift of Literacy during the winter break by providing opportunities to engage in reading at home, at school, and in the community and is part of the Superintendent Thurmond’s statewide literacy campaign to help all California students reach the goal of literacy by third grade, by the year 2026.

“I encourage every parent and student to use this free service to continue to read over the holidays,” said Superintendent Thurmond. “This is a great opportunity for our families to share the joy of reading and establish routines that support literacy growth for our students.” Literacy is a key benchmark in measuring and predicting student success, which is why Superintendent Thurmond is taking bold action to help students meet this important milestone. “We hope that free access to thousands of digital books will create and cultivate a lifelong love of reading that can continue to be nurtured by our school and local libraries,” Superintendent Thurmond said.

Through this initiative, studentswith the support of their families and educatorswill access books and news articles in English and Spanish using a special shared account on Renaissance’s myON digital reading platform. myON is compatible with computers, Chromebooks, and tablets, and low-bandwidth and offline reading options provide expanded opportunities to access reading materials. All myON books and news articles include natural-voice audio narration, which is particularly helpful for younger learners and encourages read-alouds and read-alongs outside of school.

This initiative is intended to support California schools and districts that are not currently using myON with their students. School and district leaders can access information for this special, shared login on a new web page created for this initiative. They will also find a number of helpful resources to help them launch this initiative with students, staff, and families, including an overview of myON, tips for getting started, family reading activities, and short video walk-throughs.

The myON personalized literacy solution is currently used in hundreds of California schools. Students in these schools and districts who have their own personalized logins should continue using them to access myON and take advantage of the enhanced personalization.

“We are excited to support Superintendent Thurmond’s bold vision of literacy and access to books for every student in California,” said Chris Bauleke, CEO of Renaissance. “This partnership provides access to myON digital books and news articles through the end of January and reinforces Renaissance’s mission to accelerate learning for all children, in partnership with the California Department of Education.”

As part of his literacy effort to ensure students can read by third grade by 2026, State Superintendent Thurmond is working to expand the use of California libraries by pledging to help 100,000 students get their first library cards by 2026 and working to secure and provide one million books to students and families in need. He will also embark on a library tour, host events, and organize to help California students—especially students in low-income communities—gain access to libraries.


The California Department of Education is a state agency led by State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond. For more information, please visit the California Department of Education’s website. You may also follow Superintendent Thurmond on TwitterFacebook, and YouTube.




School and division leaders have been faced with enormous challenges in the year 2021. Yet with determination, talent, and outstanding leadership, school is continuing. California is fortunate to have outstanding educational leaders who exemplify the best qualities of learning, teaching and leading. These are people who demonstrate true understanding of curriculum, assessment, and instruction, inspire others through their leadership and have had impact statewide. CASCD’s Outstanding Instructional Leader (OIL) award nominations are open now. Nomination materials are due by January 15, 2022.

The nomination must be made on an official form and submitted to CASCD Executive Assistant, Cheryl Casagrande with OIL Nominee” in the subject line. These forms are available on the CASCD website under the "About" tab and then click on Outstanding Instructional Leader Award above. If you have any questions, please contact CASCD Executive Director, Kathleen McCreery at

California ASCD 2021 Congratulates our Outstanding Instructional Leader Award Recipient

Cynthia "Cindy" Marten was confirmed by the U.S. Senate as the Deputy Secretary on May 11, 2021.  Before joining ED, Marten served as the superintendent of the San Diego Unified School District since 2013.  She has spent 32 years as an educator, holding various roles of increasing responsibility as a teacher, literacy specialist, vice principal, and principal.  She is the author of "Word Crafting: Teaching Spelling, Grades K-6," which places an emphasis on literacy as a key to students' success. 

As superintendent, she directed implementation of the district's Vision 2020 commitment to a meaningful graduation for all students, with the district achieving the highest graduation rate among big-city districts in California and the fastest reading growth of large urban districts nationwide, in 2019.

In addition to her emphasis on academics, Marten has been a champion for health and wellness, putting in place an award-winning wellness policy for staff and students. Under her leadership, San Diego Unified received Gold Recognition in the American Heart Association's Workplace Health Achievement Index for efforts to support employee wellness, and multiple San Diego Unified schools received "America's Healthiest Schools" award from the Alliance for a Healthier Generation.

Prior to being appointed superintendent, for ten years Marten worked in one of San Diego's most ethnically diverse and economically challenged school communities, at Central Elementary School in City Heights. As a teacher, instructional leader, and later as principal, she established a commitment to educating the whole child through an emphasis on social and emotional learning and the arts, combined with academic rigor.

The Human Connection – Sow The Heart: One Story at a Time

Let's Stay in Touch!

CASCD is active on Twitter:   #cascd, @CA_ASCD, and Facebook:  California ASCD. We'd love to see what's happening out there, feel free to tag us!  #cascd or follow us!

For email updates contact


Atkinson, Andelson, Loya, Ruud & Romo is a full service law firm representing school districts in the areas of:  labor, employment, governance, special education, facilities and construction, and much more.  With more than 215 attorneys in nine offices throughout California, AALRR is poised to help your district succeed.


Houghton Mifflin Harcourt - Our work at HMH(R)  is the outcome of our guiding purpose, vision, and values.  By learning more about us, you'll discover what makes our products and services so exceptional.  It's not only because of our long history of innovation but also because of our people and their commitment to educators and learners.  We share an understanding of what an enormous privilege it is to invite young people to become the heroes of their own narratives, to shape the arc of a story, and to change a life.  That is the power of learning.

ABOUT California ASCD Membership - an ASCD Affiliate

CASCD members are active and involved in the changing face of education.  CASCD strives to exist as a vibrant and active network that supports paraprofessional, educators, teachers, administrators, site and district leaders, and retirees who seek to support improvements related to   quality teaching, leading and learning.

CASCD members frequently volunteer to host workshops and institutes at their local schools, serve on committees, produce newsletter articles or webinars, and serve the association in a variety of ways. 

Would you like to be part of a collaborative network of educators?  This is a warm and welcoming group!  Members can be involved in many aspects by serving on committees or serving as a member of the board of directors!  The best part of involvement is the opportunity to network, learn together, and connect with leaders across California and across the country!  

Examples include:  Support with publications, assist with professional development activities, volunteer at events, support efforts around the "Whole Child," participate in legislative advocacy and more!  A complete list of committees for membership involvement can be found here.  

If you are a CASCD member and would like an opportunity for greater involvement, please speak with a board member (click here), or Executive Director Kathleen McCreery via email about opportunities for involvement.

We encourage new members and renewing members.  For more info, click the gold box below.

ASCD - Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development

CASCD is an affiliate of the national ASCD - learn more about the role ASCD plays both nationally and internationally by clicking here! 

CASCD member registration for conferences and purchases benefit our California Affiliate directly.   Simply place the items for purchase in your ASCD shopping cart and then enter CAAFF in the space for promotional code.  ASCD will return 5% of your conference registration and 2% of your book purchases to us to support programs in California.  

ASCD CaliforniaPhone: (530) 520-9412
Mailing: PO Box 1841
Oroville, CA 95965

The California Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (CASCD) is a diverse community of educators throughout California committed to promoting exemplary practices that ensure all learners reach their fullest potential.


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