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Superintendent's Community Message: May 7, 2022


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Hello WCCUSD Community,

Please view my message to you about the upcoming Strategic Planning meeting.

Attend the Next District Strategic Planning Meeting, May 9 

We are well into the strategic planning process and have received great feedback from the community. Your support and participation will lead to creating a powerful vision, mission and graduate profile for WCCUSD and our students. I would like to thank the members in our community who have taken part so far, and I would like to personally invite you to join and make your voice heard.

The next engagement is Monday, May 9 from 5:30 p.m. -7:30 p.m. at Kennedy High School.

RSVP on the strategic plan web page: On this page, you can also find dates for each upcoming engagement.


WCCUSD Celebrates Teacher Appreciation Week

In celebration of Teacher Appreciation Week, we asked the WCCUSD community to share with us who their favorite teacher is and why they deserve special recognition.

We received over 800 responses, including the quotes you see above! We will share all the responses we have received this month.

Each teacher we received a response for was entered into a drawing for a $500 gift card, which was conducted on Friday, May 6.

The winner is: Emily Floyd of Mira Vista Elementary!

Congratulations, Emily! Your gift card will be delivered to you at school on California Day of the Teacher (Wednesday, May 11).

WCCUSD teachers, we appreciate you!

Update: Student Vaccine Mandate

I want to update you on the district’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate policy. On April 14, the California Department of Health Services announced the delay of implementation of the state’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate, stating that any [COVID-19] vaccine requirements would take effect no sooner than July 1, 2023. 

Before this announcement, the district’s Board of Trustees adopted a motion to "align" the date of the district's vaccine mandate for students to the "date with the state." At the time the Board adopted this motion, the date was still projected to be July 1, 2022.

Because the State has moved the implementation date of any student COVID-19 vaccine requirements to “no sooner” than July 1, 2023, our District will align with the state’s date of July 1, 2023, as well. Students are not required to get the COVID-19 vaccine before that date.

We will share an update on the vaccination mandate for district employees, volunteers and vendors within the next couple of weeks. 

Vaccination is part of the district’s comprehensive strategy to slow the spread of the COVID-19 virus and the many variants, along with following state and local safety guidelines and conducting weekly testing.  We continue to encourage all eligible students, employees, volunteers and vendors to get vaccinated.


Pinole Valley HS student Named Congressional Art Contest Finalist

Pinole Valley High School sophomore Brien Bernando was named 2022 Congressional Art Contest finalist, Rep. Mike Thompson (CA-05) announced Wednesday. 

Rep. Mike Thompson held a virtual reception with students from California’s Fifth District who submitted pieces of art to his 2022 Congressional Art Competition. At the reception, Thompson celebrated all of the artists and announced the finalists from each county and the grand prize winner alongside a panel of judges.

Congratulations to Brien Bernardo and his photography teacher, Mr. Steve Pinto for winning and representing Contra Costa County.

Brien's Point Reyes piece beat over a dozen other entries and his work will be placed in the Vallejo office of our district representative for a year in honor of his outstanding work.


Moving Forward Scholarship Program Available to WCCUSD Students

Moving Forward, an organization formed by volunteers that provides resources and support to community members in Richmond, is offering scholarships to students who currently reside or attend high school in Richmond, CA or the surrounding areas (i.e., El Sobrante, San Pablo). 

Students must show a record of volunteerism in the community and be on the path to higher education. Those who fit the following criteria may be eligible to receive a scholarship of up to $500. Click here to download the Moving Forward scholarship application and click here to learn more about the Moving Forward organization and scholarship requirements.


56th Annual Student Art Exhibit Winners Announced 

The West Contra Costa Unified School District, in partnership with the Richmond Art Center, held its annual art show reception on Tuesday, April 19 for the 56th annual student art exhibit. In its 56th year, the WCCUSD Student Art Show displayed works by over 300 students from 12 different schools.

Congratulations to the Artistic Achievement Award Winners

  • Yvette Bennett, Grade 12, Untitled, Paper, graphite, markers, coffee and lighter, Pinole Valley High School, Teacher: Shokrai
  • Isabella Shapland, Grade 12, Untitled, Acrylic on canvas, El Cerrito High School, Teacher: Jun
  • Chandy Viridet, Grade 12, Self Made, Pencil, Richmond High School, Teacher: Hudson
  • Navi Emiliano, Grade 12, El Gigante, Digital Media, Hercules High School, Teacher: Gemma 
  • Roderick Alexander, Grade 12, Color Scale Painting, Acrylic on paper, Kennedy High School, Teacher: Mainini
  • Moncerrat Gudino Valdez, Grade 12, Acrylic paint, Richmond High School, Teacher: Hudson
Student artwork can be viewed in person from April 6 - May 14, 2022 at the Richmond Art Center. Visit the  to see the entire list of winners, participating schools and honorable mentions.

LifeLong Medical Clinic Hosts Community Vaccine Clinic, May 14 

Our neighbors at LifeLong Medical Clinic have partnered with WCCUSD to host two community vaccine clinics from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Saturday, May 14 at the LifeLong Brookside location, 2023 Vale Road, San Pablo, CA. 

The clinic is open to community members ages five and older and walk-ups are available. Visit or call (510) 549-5454 for more information

Black Women in WCCUSD Honored at Leadership Luncheon

Over 50 leaders in WCCUSD were recognized in the Black Women in Leadership luncheon on Saturday, April 30 at Pinole Valley High school. The event was organized by Trustee Area 1 Board Member Jamela Smith-Folds to honor black women leaders in the District who have made a significant impact in education. Click here to see the photo gallery.


Spring Music Festival Schedule Now Available

The Visual and Performing Arts Program has released the spring festival schedule. Families and community members can enjoy student performances district wide. 


Class of 2022 Graduation Schedule Now Available

Congratulations to the Class of 2022! High school graduations begin Saturday, May 21 with Middle College at the Contra Costa College football field and continue through Tuesday, June 21 with Extended Learning completing the season. Visit the District’s website at to see the full graduation schedule.

In community,


Dr. Kenneth Chris Hurst

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