California’s Statewide System of Support 2022 Community Engagement Initiative Year 2 Report


Senior Advisor David Toston, Assistant Director Steven Sterling Mitchell, and Deputy Executive Director Chris Hartley partnered with Joel Rabin from Inform to Inspire to present on California’s Statewide System of Support 2022 Community Engagement Initiative Year 2 Report.


California Engage Website


Media, Professional Learning


Board, Site Administrator / Instructional Coach, Systems Leadership, Teacher


Community Engagement


Lessons Learned: Resources for Championing Equity


The California Association of African-American Superintendents & Administrators (CAAASA)’s statewide Professional Learning Network (PLN) began in the Fall of 2017, with the generous support of the California Collaborative for Educational Excellence (CCEE). The goal of the CAAASA PLN is to identify the inequities experienced by African American students in California K-12 schools and to address them through a systems-change approach. The CAAASA PLN has worked over the past five years to surface and share best evidence-based practices that improve the educational outcomes of African American students. It aims to uncover the policy, practice, and performance that most effectively address systemic problems and lead to improved student outcomes.

During the onset of the pandemic, CAAASA worked closely with CCEE to respond to the crisis conditions in the field of education with professional development resources and forums and venues for information sharing and support. PLN members, including the three county offices, were active in this response, co-developing resources with CAAASA. In late 2021, CAAASA had the opportunity to reconvene the original seven local educational agencies (LEAs), including their superintendent leadership, for an in-depth discussion of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on our schools, our students, their families, and teaching staff and school site, district, and county leadership. Led by Dr. Alicia Montgomery, Executive Director of the Center for Powerful Public Schools, we continued these important discussions throughout the spring of 2022, recording conversations and interviews on video for CCEE highlight reels and future resource development. In this brief, each of the LEAs provides highlights of their individual trajectories, reflecting on the enormous impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.


  • Napa County Office of Education
  • Los Angeles County Office of Education
  • San Diego County Office of Education
  • Pittsburg Unified School District
  • Fresno Unified School District
  • Lynwood Unified School District
  • Compton Unified School District


CAAASA’s Professional Learning Network Impact Report


Reports & Publications


Governance (Research & Policy), LEA Leadership and Staff, Site Admin & Coach





CCEE 2021-2022 Annual Report


To demonstrate the alignment of CCEE’s work with statewide agency priorities and its effectiveness in meeting statutory obligations, CCEE redesigned its Annual Report. This end-of-year report features select initiatives from each Center to highlight how the goals and initiatives, approved by the CCEE board, were achieved.


Governing Board Presentation Slides

Digital Magazine

Digital Magazine (PDF Version)

Successes and Challenges in Reducing Chronic Absenteeism

Chronic absenteeism has affected a significant percentage of California’s K-12 student population and is likely to continue to do so over the coming years due to the lasting impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic. School absences negatively affect academic and socioemotional outcomes for all students – especially youth of color and other vulnerable student groups – making improving attendance a top priority for school systems.

This attendance brief aims to better understand how the issue of chronic absenteeism has been addressed by districts and what improvements could yield better student outcomes. It highlights insights and best practices collected from districts that were able to decrease their chronic absenteeism rate in the past five years and offers recommendations on how local educational agencies (LEAs) could help increase student attendance.

CCEE Connection (July 2022)

News & Announcements
Community Engagement Initiative

As the Community Engagement Initiative enters its 4th year, we are excited to announce that our community of participating districts is growing from 17 to 46; representing the entire geography of the state, as well as county offices of education, charter schools, and rural single-school districts. Follow the CEI on Twitter for upcoming introductions to these new partners in our work.

In Case You Missed It

System of Support Updates (June & July 2022)

Friday 5 – Parent Resources to Promote Summer Learning at Home (7/8/22)

July Resources
Microlearning Modules

CCEE is partnering with content experts and experienced educators to develop “microlearning modules” — short videos sharing and explaining concepts, tools, and resources to support substitute teachers, paraeducators, and other instructional staff in the classroom.

Universal Design for Learning for School and District Leaders

Developed in partnership with the San Joaquin County Office of Education, this learning path provides a 30,000 ft. view of Universal Design for Learning (UDL) – the why, the what, and the how to begin planning for and implementing UDL — with guidance for beginning your UDL journey as a school or district.

Assessment for Learning to Support Student Achievement

Developed in partnership with Validity Partners, this learning path introduces the “Formative Assessment (FA) Moves” framework to help teachers and students recognize, evaluate, and use “soft data” that emerges during and across a set of lessons.

It offers practical tips and tools, including video-based examples, worksheets, and templates to help users make progress — minute by minute, day by day — with assessment for learning practices rooted in research.

About the I3 Center

The Innovation, Instruction, and Impact (I3) Center implements a statewide approach to improving LEA capacity by collaboratively developing, delivering, sharing, and spotlighting practices that have demonstrated the power to improve outcomes for students.

About the CCEE

The California Collaborative for Educational Excellence is a statewide leader delivering on California’s promise of a quality, equitable education for every student.

Executive Director’s Corner

By Matt J. Navo, Executive Director, CCEE

Headshot of Matt Navo

We all have something in common as educators — we want our schools to improve and innovate. Sometimes we differ on what schools should improve and innovate about. But at the end of the day, if we are not focused on improving and innovating on behalf of improved learning outcomes for all students, we might be missing the boat. 

The Innovation, Instruction, and Impact (I3) Center is designed to do just that. Its focus is to support improvement and innovation for LEAs to accomplish the goals they set in the Local Control Accountability Plans (LCAP). The I3 Center also provides innovative ways to help support LEAs with challenging problems. 

Below you will read about the Research-Practice Partnerships (RPPs) that are available for LEAs to support innovation and improvement, as well as the “microlearning modules” initiative, which is an innovative way to help bridge the gap between necessary knowledge for teaching and learning.


Matt J. Navo
Executive Director, CCEE

Collaborative Learning From LEA Innovations Through Research-Practice Partnerships

By Italo Ciccarelli, Program Specialist, CCEE

Headshot of Italo Ciccarelli

The focus of CCEE’s Innovation, Instruction, and Impact (I3) Center is in using a statewide approach to collaboratively developing, delivering, sharing, and spotlighting practices that have demonstrated the power to improve outcomes for students.

Applying lessons learned and best practices from our previous learning network initiatives, CCEE’s Research-Practice Partnership (RPP) establishes collaborative agreements between local educational agencies (LEAs) and CCEE to support the initial implementation of an early-stage project, program, or initiative that aims to improve student outcomes. Areas of focus for proposed programs or projects can include any of the State priorities as outlined in the LEA’s Local Control and Accountability Plans (LCAPs) as long as they have the explicit goal of improving student academic performance, engagement, or social-emotional well-being. This initiative will focus on the application of continuous improvement and research processes to examine formative outcomes and support informed decision-making in the early stages of systems change.

Interested LEAs can download the RPP application on CCEE’s website. Questions can be directed to Italo Ciccarelli at [email protected].

Frequently Asked Questions
Is there an application period or a deadline to apply for the Partnership?

Currently, there is no application cycle or an established deadline to apply for the RPP. Applications will be reviewed in the order they are received. CCEE will work directly with applicants LEAs to communicate on application decisions and next steps.

How long will it take for the application to be reviewed and for funds to be awarded?

The review process and the award of the funding will depend on the details specified in the application. There are many factors that will determine the timing of the approval and awarding decision. CCEE will review each application in the order in which it was received and will work in a manner to communicate with applicants on the status of the application.

How much funding is available through the RPP?

We anticipate that a typical short-cycle project may receive funding  ranging from $20,000 to $50,000. CCEE reserves the right to consider and accept proposed projects for varying timeframes and amounts based on its review of the LEA’s application pursuant to the criteria specified.

How many LEAs will be identified for a Partnership?

At this time, CCEE has not set a specific number of LEAs that will be identified for a Partnership. Applications will be reviewed in the order they are received. CCEE will communicate any changes to the procedure and updates on the RPP webpage.

Is there a limit to the number of applications an LEA can submit?

Currently, there is no limit to the number of applications an LEA can submit. However, it is recommended to follow the application guidelines to ensure the projects follow the specified parameters in order to be approved and receive available funding. CCEE reserves the right to consider and accept proposed projects for varying timeframes and amounts based on its review of the LEA’s application pursuant to the criteria specified.

Tips and Tools at Your Fingertips: Microlearning Resources by Educators for Educators

By Sujie Shin, Deputy Executive Director, CCEE

Headshot of Sujie Shin

The Innovation, Instruction, and Impact (I3) Center is excited to announce the launch of our microlearning modules, brief 5-8 minute video learning tools designed to support substitute teachers, paraeducators, and other instructional staff who may not have access to more robust professional learning opportunities. These modules showcase master teachers from across the state, sharing immediately applicable tips, strategies, and tools in a brief video with downloadable handouts, instructions, and other supplemental materials and resources. 

CCEE has partnered with the California Subject Matter Projects (CSMP) and master teachers from each of the nine projects in the CSMP network to develop microlearning modules that provide quick tips, tools, and guidance in the key areas of classroom management, instruction, assessment, and social-emotional well-being.  Learn more about our partnership and access the resources developed with the subject matter teams on our CSMP microlearning modules collection page.

Center for Assessment logo
Partner Spotlight
Accelerating Student Learning with Formative Assessment Practices

CCEE is also proud to continue partnering with innovative, equity-minded leaders in the assessment and accountability space, like the Center for Assessment.

The Center for Assessment, in conjunction with CCEE, has developed microlearning courses aimed at introducing formative assessment processes. These microlearning courses provide new and aspiring educators with the knowledge and skills necessary for gathering information about what students know and can do so that instructional decisions support and accelerate student learning. These micro-courses can also provide experienced educators, instructional coaches, and administrators an opportunity to reflect on formative assessment practices used throughout all classrooms.

Learn more about our partnership with the Center for Assessment and access all the modules on this webpage.

CCEE Connection (May 2022)

News & Announcements
2021-22 CCEE Independent Study Professional Learning Network (ISPLN)

Join CCEE and participating districts for solution-oriented discussions focused on a problem of practice around independent study.

Community Engagement Initiative

Interested in enhancing and expanding your district’s community engagement efforts? Applications to join the Community Engagement Initiative (CEI)’s Cohort III Peer Leading and Learning Network (PLLN) are due next week, Tuesday, May 17, 2022 by 9:00am. This is the last time this initiative will be bringing on a Cohort of new district teams!

Interested districts can view FAQs, detailed application instructions, and a recorded information session at

Unable to join but still interested? Make sure you follow us on Twitter for news, updates, and resources!

Looking Ahead

California Elementary Literacy Conference – The Sacramento County Office of Education, California Department of Education, and CCEE are coming together on June 16th, 2022 to share evidence-based early literacy instructional practices.

Reflection Brings Rejuvenation – As the end of the year is approaching, take some time to reflect. This National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP) blog offers tips on how to reflect and rejuvenate while protecting your mental health.

In Case You Missed It

System of Support Updates (May 2022)

Learning Acceleration Evaluation The CCEE and its Administrative Agent, the Marin County Office of Education (MCOE), issued a Request for Proposals for Independent Evaluation Services for the Learning Acceleration System (LAS) Grant on January 31, 2022. On April 4, 2022, the CCEE posted a Notice of Intent to Award identifying Education Northwest as recipients of grant funding.

May Resources

California AfterSchool Network training webpage – Explore this Expanded Learning opportunity happening Wednesday, May 11, 2022, 9:00am – 3:00pm. Visit their webpage for additional event and registration details.

Asian Pacific American Heritage Month – Find ready-use lesson plans, student activities, guides, and research aids in this selection of resources for teachers.

Jewish American Heritage Month – The Library of Congress, National Archives and Records Administration, National Endowment for the Humanities, National Gallery of Art, National Park Service and United States Holocaust Memorial Museum join in paying tribute to the generations of Jewish Americans who helped form the fabric of American history, culture, and society.

Haitian Heritage Month – Learn more about Haitian culture and history on National Today’s website celebrating Haitian Heritage Month.

Mental Health Awareness Month – National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) supports and educates the public on mental health.

CDE Mental Health – CDE’s mental health page provides various resources for mental health support.

Center for Safe and Resilient Schools and Workplaces – During times of stress and crisis, they provide training and consultation to promote safety, resilience, and recovery.

National Foster Care Month – Learn more about foster care and find resources on the Children’s Bureau and Child Welfare Information Gateway website.

About the CCEE

The California Collaborative for Educational Excellence is a statewide leader delivering on California’s promise of a quality, equitable education for every student.



Executive Director’s Corner
Making School Transformation Happen!
Headshot of Matt Navo

School transformation is expensive. It costs time, resources, and funding to turn around a school, much less a district. People ask, “How much time does it take to turn around a school?” The answer is: it takes as long as it takes. The Teaching, Learning, and Leading Center (TLLC) is charged with addressing school transformation by advising and assisting school improvement. The TLLC is also overseeing the Learning Acceleration System Grant, an initiative to disseminate evidence-based learning acceleration strategies to educators across California. If you have a school/district that needs support or simply wants to learn about the Systemic Instructional Review (SIR) process and Learning Acceleration, then you are in the right place. To find out more, read this May newsletter from TLLC.


Matt J. Navo
Executive Director, CCEE

Journey to Systemic Improvement with CCEE
Finding Coherence with CCEE Improvement Coaches
By Dr. Stephanie Gregson, Deputy Executive Director of the Teaching, Learning, and Leading Center, CCEE
Headshot of Stephanie Gregson

Executive Director, Matt Navo, said it well, school improvement takes as long as it takes. Our team within the Teaching, Learning, and Leading Center at CCEE works in alliance with local educational agencies to understand their assets, needs, and aspirations to begin the journey of effective school improvement and positively impacting students’ experiences. Within Direct Technical Assistance or our Facilitated Instructional Review process, a road map is co-created through an instructional review process. Our team are trained improvement coaches that will work with your team in understanding the process of how to get better at getting better. We utilize Fullan and Quinn’s elements from their Coherence Framework as the foundation of our work: focusing direction, creating a collaborative culture, securing accountability, deepening learning, and building leadership at all levels.

Throughout this newsletter there will be examples of elements highlighted through the Direct Technical Assistance and Systemic Instructional Review process. You will learn how recommendations and resources can be connected together through the quality improvement process. You will also hear from our partners in the Learning Acceleration System Grant, a grant to build a statewide infrastructure of professional learning in literacy, language development, and mathematics. We are all working together towards an educational experience where every student is inspired and prepared to thrive as their best self in the world.

Salinas Union High School District
Engaging in Improvement through Direct Technical Assistance
By Alma Pio-Garcia, Special Projects Director, Salinas Union High School District
Headshot of Alma Pio-Garcia
Salinas Union High School District (SUHSD) has partnered with CCEE since 2019. The district focuses on these students groups:
  • English Learners
  • Students Experiencing Homelessness
  • Students with Disabilities
Below, Alma Pio-Garcia shares SUHSD’s experience collaborating with CCEE.

The Salinas Union High School District is committed to creating environments within our organization where families/caregivers feel like they belong and their voices matter. During the past five years, we have increased parent participation in workshops, conferences, and committees, and yet based on our 2019-20 Systemic Instructional Review (SIR) recommendations, this was not enough for parents to feel like they were true partners. Thus, we were thrilled to be selected to be part of the Community Engagement Initiative (CEI) along with 18 other CA school districts so that we could learn about the best researched-based family engagement practices.

As a result of being part of this cohort, our CEI team has been able to identify a problem of practice through the Plan-Do-Study-Act process that is in direct alignment with our SIR recommendations. Our team engaged in a fishbone activity to identify our problem of practice: focusing on increasing ongoing, authentic communication with parents/caregivers, which will support their sense of belonging. Our journey has just begun, and we will continue working with the various educational partners representing our diverse community to increase genuine family engagement. We are currently working on identifying our research-based strategies and developing metrics to measure our implementation. The alignment between CEI and the SIR recommendations has been critical to us building coherence for our families.

Contact SUHSD
Introducing the Learning Acceleration System Grant Team
By Stacey Wedin, Assistant Director, CCEE
Headshot of Stacey Wedin

Section 152 of Assembly Bill 130 (2021) appropriates funding to the CCEE to administer, in partnership with selected county offices of education, “…evidenced-based professional education for educators that can support learning acceleration, particularly in mathematics, literacy, and language development.” The CCEE is honored to be partnering with Lake COE, San Diego COE, and Santa Clara COE as selected grantees under the Learning Acceleration System Grant. Each county has partnered with institutes of higher education to build or expand professional learning across content areas to benefit educators and students. Below, our partners reflect on opportunities and aspirations as this important work begins.

Learning Acceleration System Grant-Mathematics
Kim Ferguson, Grant Lead, Lake COE
Headshot of Kim Ferguson

“Learning Acceleration is based on inclusivity and the foundational idea that all students can become powerful math learners. Learning Acceleration allows every student to increase their mathematics proficiency through asset-based high-quality instruction, engaging open-ended tasks focused on the Big Ideas in the Common Core State Standards, and targeted interventions.”

Contact LCOE 
California Literacy Elevation by Accelerating Reading (Project CLEAR)
Dr. Shannon Baker, Senior Director, San Diego COE
Headshot of Dr. Shannon Baker

“Project CLEAR is built on the premise that learning acceleration for diverse student populations will occur through the implementation of Reading Recovery or Descubriendo la Lectura as the content and pedagogy in the course focuses on supporting educators to teach the skills that help them reach grade-level literacy outcomes.”

Contact SDCOE 
California Collaborative for Learning Acceleration (CCLA)
Dr. Yee Wan, Project Director, Santa Clara COE
Headshot of Dr. Yee Wan

“CCLA is honored to collaborate with regions across California to build educator capacity through evidence-based professional learning in the areas of mathematics, literacy, and language development. Our collective goal is for every TK-12 student to develop their content knowledge and agency within their learning environments to accelerate their learning.”

Contact SCCOE 
Teaching, Learning, and Leading Center (TLLC)

Our team works in alliance with educators to improve teaching, learning, and leadership so every student is inspired and prepared to thrive as their best self.


Meet Our TLLC Team Members!

Stephanie and Rocio are valued leaders on our TLLC team! Read more on them below.

Headshot of Stephanie Gregson
Stephanie Gregson, Ed.D.
Deputy Executive Director

Stephanie leads the Teaching, Learning, and Leading Center (TLLC) overseeing TLLC’s efforts focusing on school turnaround centering on improving teaching and learning within districts and schools aimed at equitable access, opportunity, and outcomes for students.

Fun Fact: Stephanie has recently completed over half of the California section of the Pacific Crest Trail showing that women, and not just people like Bear Grylls, can take on the wild.

Headshot of Rocio Gonzalez-Frausto
Rocio Gonzalez-Frausto
Assistant Director

Rocio provides Direct Technical Assistance support to district, charter, and county teams where they engage in continuous improvement practices to enhance instructional practice and strategy, so they can positively affect student outcomes. Internally, she collaborates and provides guidance on the implementation of the Direct Technical Assistance process. 

Fun Fact: Rocio is a level 2 archery coach.

Professional Development: An Investment in Yourself

California’s System of Support would not be complete without an investment in the professional development (PD) of educators who work directly with the students we serve. In a time when educators may feel lost in a storm of competing initiatives, the California Coalition for Inclusive Literacy (CCIL) provides shelter under the umbrella of the Universal Design for Learning (UDL) framework.In the same way that the UDL framework provides multiple options to meet the needs of a wide range of learners, the free resources developed by CCIL strive to meet the many needs of educators who, every day, must address a range of demands such as accelerating learning and nurturing the social-emotional resiliency of students. 

“Amazing. I haven’t heard UDL spoken like this ever. You truly understand the struggles we teachers feel daily. Thank you so much for what you are teaching us today.”

With empathy toward these pulls on educators’ stamina and time, CCIL provides Four Ways to Engage with inclusive literacy and UDL in thematically-linked packages every month. 

Got a Minute?

Understanding that time is an educator’s kryptonite, these flexible learning modules offer teachers, coaches, administrators, and staff with options to engage independently or collaboratively during a staff meeting or from the comfort of their home in 10-, 20-, and 45-minute increments.

Monthly Webinar Series: Universal Design for Inclusive Literacy

Literacy is an act of power and freedom. It includes making meaning from text but also encompasses the ability to critique the thinking of others and advocate for oneself. Literacy and content-area knowledge are intertwined and must be fostered in inclusive environments.

This 9-part series is especially relevant as we welcome students back to classrooms. Educators grappling with accelerating learning in the face of pronounced barriers and student variability will find this series timely and relevant. Learn how to support literacy for all students in inclusive and equitable learning environments through the lens of the UDL framework.

Top Tips!

Aligned with the monthly theme, this one-page document offers strategic support at your fingertips. Top Tips is designed to jog thinking, spark conversation, and encourage deeper learning.

Featured Resource from Learning Designed

CAST, Inc.—the creators of UDL—hosts this online community platform, which includes a curated library of more than 500 vetted resources related to universal design. Each month, CCIL highlights a high-leverage, quality resource for educators who are interested in Learning Designed, but might not have the time to peruse or navigate all the resources. Check out this month’s featured resource—The Assessment Playbook!

These supports, provided by the California Department of Education’s (CDE) $4.9M Educator Workforce Investment Grant (EWIG), are a venture and testament to the value of those in the field supporting students. Taking the time to grow yourself is an act of self-care. As teachers nourish the love of learning in students, they must also nourish that love for themselves. We hope you find a source of support in these resources, as described by a recent PD attendee: “Amazing. I haven’t heard UDL spoken like this ever. You truly understand the struggles we teachers feel daily. Thank you so much for what you are teaching us today.”

Click here to contact or learn more about the CCIL Team.


Elise Yerkey, Implementation Specialist, CAST