Superintendent's Office
DR Thomas
Gary Thomas, Ed.D.
County Superintendent

Superintendent's Message

Superintendent's Messages Listing

State Of Education Looks To Future

Beginning my first full term as San Bernardino County superintendent, I remain inspired by the teaching and learning that takes place in the classrooms throughout our communities to prepare our students for the 21st century global economy. Envisioning our future in public education in our region was the theme this year for my annual State of Education Address on Feb. 9. While we face many challenges, I remain committed to building a common vision to prepare the 417,000 K-12 students in our county to take their place as productive, contributing members of our society.

Below are some highlights from my speech:

  • In an interview for Edutopia, futuristic author Alvin Toffer offers us a glimpse into his vision of public schools in the future. Schools are open 24 hours a day. They are integrated into the community. Different kids arrive at different times. The bells don't just ring all at the same time. That's because the children are different. They have different potentials. Teachers work with non-teachers. Teachers alternate working in schools and in the business world. Local businesses have offices in the schools. Technology is infused into every aspect of the environment. Curriculum is integrated across the disciplines.
  • As we look toward the future, it's important to note our progress to date. Schools in San Bernardino County made notable gains in academic achievement and outpaced the state average in terms of growth on California's measure of school performance, the Academic Performance Index (API) last year. With 22 more schools surpassing the state standard of 800 for API from the prior year, a record 169 county schools have reached the state standard. Plus, the county's API rose to a record-high of 746, an increase of 14 points and the county's third consecutive year of double-digit growth. There were nine additional schools that passed 900 in API growth for the first time. There are now a record 26 schools countywide that are at or above 900, more than 2 1/2 times the total from two years ago.
  • Improving dropout and college-going rates in San Bernardino County has been at the forefront of our work. When we envision the future for our students, region, state and nation, we know we've got to step-up our growth at every level in order to be competitive, viable and successful. In the most recent data reported by the state, county schools have made improvements in our dropout rates decreasing from 22.5 percent for 2007-08 to 21.6 percent in 2008-09. Meanwhile, the state dropout rate increased from 18.9 percent to 21.5 percent. Not only is San Bernardino County moving in the right direction, we are bucking the state trend!
  • California's disinvestment in education is choking the economic engine of this state and breaking the promise of opportunity for our students. Until the Legislature can agree that a disinvestment in public education robs our students of the opportunities to prepare them for productive citizenry; and until this state delivers a school finance system that adequately funds our schools; I encourage us to rally resources and work toward a common vision where access, equality and opportunities abound for every student in San Bernardino County. An investment in education is an investment in our common future.

In a time of shrinking resources, it challenges us to take courageous steps to not only improve, but to rethink, our public schools. I look forward to the next four years of working together. We have a great deal of hard work ahead of us; and we cannot do it without a vision - with a common vision for the future. With a common vision, more of our students will be successful in school. With a common vision, more of our students will graduate prepared for work and college. With a common vision, our schools will be safer and our communities will grow stronger. With a common vision, we will graduate highly trained, skilled employees and get this economy back on its feet. With a common vision, families will thrive and communities will prosper. With a common vision, we can achieve equity and excellence for all students. Envision the future.

Superintendent's Message...

County Schools' Successes Highlighted At State Of Education Address

California's Prospects Improve For State Budget

College-, Career-Readiness Key To Regional Future

Families Provide Strong Influence On Learning

New State Budget Changes Way Schools, Districts Are Funded

School Safety Always A Priority For County Schools

Voters Support Public Schools By Passing Prop 30

Record Number Of County Schools Reach State Academic Benchmark

Juvenile Court Schools Programs Receive Honors

County Graduation, Dropout Rates Show Dramatic Improvements

State Budget Situation Remains Bad News For Schools

County Schools Looks To Transform Lives Through Education

County Schools Embarks On Strategic Planning Process

Early Assessment Program Aims To Make Students College-Ready

Classified Employees Of Year Worthy Of Honors

State Of Education Looks To Future

Uncertainty Looms Over State Budget Situation

County Dropout Rate Continues To Decrease

County Students Continue To Make Progress On State Tests

Teachers Of Year At Head Of Class

May Revise By Governor Means More Budget Cuts For Education

Every One Counts In Current State Of Education

State Budget Outlook Still Poor For Schools

Call To Action Targets County Dropout Rates

Take Steps To Make This School Year Healthy

Teachers Of Year Deserve Accolades

County Schools Recognizes Those Who Make Difference

State Budget Passage To Hurt County Schools

County Shines Bright With Golden Bell Awards

State Budget Situation Goes From Bad To Worse

Schools Across County Continue To Show Academic Gains

Honoring County Teachers Of Year

SBCSS Welcomes Dr. Gary Thomas as Superintendent

San Bernardino County Superintendent of Schools • 601 North E Street • San Bernardino, California 92415-0020 • Phone: (909) 888-3228
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