The retirement of Sr. Monica Lowry in 1996 marked the hiring of the school’s first lay principal. In 2001, health issues required the Sisters of Charity, BVM to return to their community’s home base in Iowa. Today the school continues to operate with an all-lay staff which numbers twenty-eight, including full and part-time certificated teachers, paraprofessionals, clerical, custodial, and administrative personnel.
Accreditation Presentation School is fully accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges and the Western Catholic Educators Association. The purpose of the accreditation process is to foster excellence in elementary education by encouraging school improvement through a process of continuing evaluation and to recognize schools that meet an acceptable level of quality in accordance with established criteria.
Staffing All teachers have a minimum of a bachelor degree, nine hold a teaching credential, and four have earned a master degree. The range of years at Presentation School extends from three to twenty-five years. Two of our teachers are graduates of Presentation Parish School. In addition to nine homeroom teachers, we have a full-time technology teacher and part-time teachers for math, science, music, and P.E. Two aides work in kindergarten and there are part-time aides in first, second, third, fourth, fifth and sixth grades, science, and the extended care program. We also benefit from the St. Mary's High School Community Involvement Program, which provides a number of student aides each day.
Instruction - As a Catholic school, we are committed to the formation of Christian values as well as academic excellence. The religion curriculum is based on diocesan standards, while California State Standards form the basis of the academic curriculum. Additionally physical education/health, art, music, library, and computers are offered in all grades. Seventh and eighth grades are departmentalized. Our classrooms are well equipped with technology and teachers use a cross-currlcular approach infusing technology, the arts, and critical thinking skills. Most importantly, the experiences of faith and service help our students develop a love for God and an appreciation for the value of others.
Field trips are an important source of enrichment activities. Students in primary grades attend plays and visit farms and businesses. Third grade students experience Pioneer Days, fourth graders participate in Valley Days, and sixth graders attend a week at Science Camp. Eighth grade students spend a week touring the historic sites in Washington, D.C, and New York. Trips to various museums, technology centers, the state capitol, and other places of interest are also planned.
The local public school districts cooperate in the assessment of students who are identified through the Student Success Team process and sometimes offer speech and language services for our youngest students. Funds from various Title programs have provided tutoring services, materials for substance abuse awareness, and many hours of professional development opportunities for our faculty.
Currently over ninety-five percent of our graduating students apply to and are accepted by St. Mary’s High School. We receive regular notice from St. Mary’s as to the progress of our former students. Feedback indicates they thrive in high school. Many return to visit each year, sharing their stories of success. Alumni have taken on leadership positions, have been recognized for their academic and spiritual accomplishments, and a few have earned salutatorian and valedictorian status at high school graduation.
Academic Testing - The Iowa Test of Basic Skills is a nationally normed test used by all of the elementary schools within the Stockton Diocese. Presentation School performance on the ITBS (second through eighth grade) is well above the national average. Teachers also assesses achievement of the California State Standards for all grades through a variety of resources.
Facilities - Presentation Parish School is located on the site of the Church of the Presentation. Our main academic building includes the classrooms for grades one through eight. An additional building was added in 2000, that houses Kindergarten, a computer lab/library, and a state of the art science lab. The Extended Care facilities are located in the Youth Center, directly across the playground from the school. All classrooms are carpeted, air-conditioned, and Wi-Fi accessbile. There are two play structures on the grounds; one serves the needs of Kindergarten, and the other is available to the rest of the student body. The school has access to the gymnasium, the church, the Youth Center, Guadalupe Hall, and the Prayer Garden during the school day, and for special events.
Parent Involvement - Presentation Parish School is fortunate to have a strong and well-organized Parent Booster Club that promotes family-centered activities and provides the large base of volunteers that support classroom activities, fundraising events, and various other needs of the school. The School Advisory Council provides the expertise to assist in the administration of the school.