El Segundo High School & El Segundo Middle School Named Apple Distinguished Schools

Both schools have received consecutive recognition as Apple Distinguished Schools in the past; ESHS earned the distinction in 2015 and 2017, and ESMS earned the distinction in 2017.


Apple Distinguished Schools are recognized as centers of innovation, leadership, and educational excellence that use Apple products to inspire creativity, collaboration, and critical thinking. They showcase innovative uses of technology and have documented results of academic achievement.


El Segundo High School

Through the El Segundo Unified School District Individualized Technology Initiative (ITI), ESHS seeks to increase student engagement and provide relevance through access to worldwide content. ESHS first launched its ITI in 2014 as a pilot with a cohort of eight teachers and 512 students. Since then, the initiative has expanded to all 1,300 enrolled students led by three teacher cohorts, and iPads are being used as an instructional aid and student resource across all academic disciplines. Students and teachers use iPads in a one-to-one, 24/7 model to create a digital workflow and access to content.


Since implementing ITI in 2014, ESHS has five years of the California Assessment of Student Progress and Performance (CAASPP) state test score results and there has been continued growth in achievement in both English Language Arts and Mathematics. ESHS math scores jumped from 67% to 79% from 2015 to 2019 and English scores went up from 67% to 84% from 2015 to 2019. According to overall CAASPP results from 2019, ESHS scored the highest among all public high schools in the South Bay area.


Student learning, engagement, organization, and creativity are main characteristics of ESUSD’s ITI program. Aligned with the high school’s mission and graduate profile, ESHS students are using digital tools to become lifelong learners, effective communicators, and productive citizens, in preparation for future life choices and the challenges of a global society.


“We are thrilled to be named a 2019 Apple Distinguished School,” said El Segundo High School Principal Melissa Gooden. “This designation signifies the commitment of our school community to integrate technology into our instructional program. ESHS’ 1:1 iPad initiative has fostered student creativity and engagement, and will continue to evolve and offer educational opportunities to our students that are inaccessible through paper and pen alone.”


El Segundo Middle School

ESMS in an International Baccalaureate Middle Years Program (IBMYP) school. The IBMYP provides a framework of academic challenge that encourages students to develop deep conceptual understanding through study of the curriculum. The program emphasizes communication, holistic learning and intercultural awareness.


Every ESMS student is issued an iPad that not only allows them access to worlds of information, but also provides them with tools to collaborate and create at levels not previously possible. Students use Apple technology to do research, keep logs of their progress, and complete written work. The use of digital books, including books teachers create in iBooks Author, has allowed students to synchronize the hands-on, minds-on, global learning that the IB Program emphasizes. For summative tasks, students demonstrate learning through creative tools and apps, including iMovie, Keynote, Pages, Numbers, Camera, Photos, and GarageBand. These apps enable students to be creative, collaborate, and think critically.


ESMS also has five years of CAASPP state test score results to measure progress towards its vision and goals. Sixth grade math scores jumped from 52% to 69% and English scores increased from 66% to 73% from 2015 to 2019. Seventh grade math scores went from 57% to 65% while English scores went from 64% to 74%. While eight grade math scores have remained steady, English scores increased from 59% to 78% during the same period.


“El Segundo Middle School is proud to receive its second consecutive Apple Distinguished School Designation,” said Sean Brandlin, Apple teacher and personalized learning teacher and coach at ESUSD. “Our commitment to personalized learning using dynamic technology is essential to our students’ academic achievements and future success.”


The Individualized Technology Initiative at ESHS and ESMS is supported by the community, Board of Education, and all other stakeholders. The El Segundo community recognizes the need for technology in the classroom to develop the knowledge needed to be competitive in today’s workplace.


“Our schools are centers of leadership and educational excellence thanks to everyone’s commitment and dedication to do what is best for our students. ESUSD schools demonstrate a strong vision for learning with technology and continual innovation to allow our students to be engaged, creative and utilize their strengths to learn and grow as individuals,” said Marisa Janicek, ESUSD assistant superintendent of educational services.