Reedley High School and Reedley Middle College High School have been added to the list of 2021 California Distinguished Schools - the first time any high schools in the Kings Canyon Unified Schools District have received the honor.
SHAYLA GIRARDIN: Yes, this is the very first time any high school and the Kings Canyon Unified School District have been chosen as a California Distinguished school. Now this recognized the school for their hard work and exceptional student performances.
Reedley High School and Reedley Middle College High School are being recognized as California Distinguished schools.
RON PACK: This was a complete shock this year, for sure. Especially given the last year, things have just been kind of odd. So we really weren't on the lookout for California Distinguished School Award.
SHAYLA GIRARDIN: The historic win is a big first for the district.
RON PACK: We have not ever won it. And as a matter of fact, no high schools in our entire school district have ever won that award.
SHAYLA GIRARDIN: Ron Pack is the principal of Reedley Middle College High School. Located on the Reedley College campus, the school gives students an opportunity for dual enrollment.
RON PACK: Which basically means kids come in, ninth grade year, already taking college classes. And then by the end of their senior year, the idea is that they would have finished their college degree, their undergraduate degree, and their diploma at the same time.
SHAYLA GIRARDIN: Just a few blocks away is Reedley High School, home to roughly 1,600 students.
JOHN AHLIN: Truth be told, this is the first time Reedley High School has accomplished this. So it's a huge boost for, like I said, the community, the school, the staff, the teachers.
SHAYLA GIRARDIN: Just over 200 schools have been named California Distinguished schools. They're selected based on test scores, graduation rates, and overall climate.
JOHN AHLIN: It really starts with our elementary schools, our middle schools, doing that foundation. So that when students get to Reedley High School, they're prepared, and they can really reach their full potential.
RON PACK: It's just a good example of the great work that our district does. We almost didn't skip a beat when schools closed back in March of 2020. I mean, literally, like the next week, we were back at it.
SHAYLA GIRARDIN: And in Fresno County, four other high schools are recognized as distinguished schools. This includes Clovis North High School, Design Science Middle College High School, Phillip J. Patino's School of Entrepreneurship, and University High School. In studio, Shayla Girardin "ABC30 Action News."