Model School Application 2020 – 2021

California Department of Education

Apply to Become a Model School

The application process for 2020-2021 has been completed and is closed. Congratulations to our new Model Schools! New application details will be announced here in late spring / early summer 2021 to learn how to become a 2021-2022 Model School.

We invite all continuation high schools in the state to submit an application to become a “Model School” for 2020- 2021, sponsored by the California Department of Education (CDE).

Model Continuation High School (MCHS) Recognition Program:
Quick links: Timeline | Application Forms | Webinar Info | Designation Period | Invitation Letter | Pay Fee

Intent to Submit Deadline: October 15, 2020

Principals who intend to submit an application must complete the MCHS Application “Intent to Submit” Survey online here. The survey will close on Thursday, October 15, 2020, at 4:00 p.m. Submission of the survey does not obligate the principal to submit an application.

Intent to Submit Survey
Application Deadline: October 22, 2020

Completed applications must be received or delivered by 4:00 p.m. on Wednesday, October 22, 2020. Mail one original and two copies to: Dan Sackheim, Educational Options Office, California Department of Education, 1430 N Street, Suite 4202, Sacramento, CA 95814-5901. Faxed or e-mailed copies will not be accepted. Late applications will be disqualified. See application for details.

Program Contact: Dan Sackheim, Educational Options Office, CDE
Phone: 916-445-5595


California Model School Flag - CCEA

May 4, 2020 — Applications available to the field.
May 14, 2020 — Application webinar.
October 15, 2020 — Intent to Submit Survey to be completed.
October 22, 2020 — Applications due.
November 6, 2020 — Northern and Southern Applications reviewed and rated.
November 9, 2020–December 18, 2020 — Site Validation Visits.
November 30, 2020 — Application fees due (click link to make payment).
December 15, 2020 — District Audit Reports due.
February 4, 2021 — Schools notified.
April 16, 2021 — Awards ceremony.

Please note: due to COVID-19, it is strongly recommended that all schools process payments online rather than by mail. You can now pay the Model School Applicant School Review and Evaluation fee online here by the November deadline.

Application Forms | Downloads

To begin the process: Invitation Letter | Intent to Submit

Model School Application 2020-2021:

Model School Application 2020-2021 | PDF Version | Word Doc
Attachment A – Application Cover Sheet | PDF Versioneither a wet signature or electronic signature will be accepted.
Attachment B – School Information Sheet | PDF Version
Attachment C – Certification Form | PDF Versioneither a wet signature or electronic signature will be accepted.
Attachment D – Glossary  | PDF Version
Attachment E – Quality Indicators (Self-Evaluation) | PDF Version
Attachment F – Exemplary Components Checklist | PDF Version
Attachment G – Application Checklist | PDF Version

Note: The forms for the Narrative Statements and Program Effectiveness Statements have been omitted since most applicants found it difficult to use them. Instead, applicants are now required to create and submit Word documents. The formatting guidelines for these statements are included in the application and a sample is provided (see Appendix 5).

Annual Assurance of Services Forms for Current Model Schools (MCHSs):

2020 MCHSs | PDF Versionrevised 3/22/21
2019 MCHSs | PDF Versionrevised 3/22/21

Alternately, you can download the latest application forms at CDE.

Note: Schools selected as MCHSs are required to submit an Annual Assurance of Services Form to the CDE by June 30 for each of the second and third years of designation. This form certifies that the school meets or exceeds the Model School Recognition Program standards. Due to current working conditions related to COVID-19, forms may include either wet or electronic signatures and may also be submitted to Dan Sackheim, Educational Options Office, by email at

Webinar Information

Technical Assistance Webinar with CDE | Watch on YouTube

About the video: Recorded webinar on the 2020-21 Model Schools Recognition Program: Technical Assistance from the California Department of Education on May 14, 2020. The webinar provided an overview of the 2020-21 Model School Application, how to complete the application, and the application review process. The presentation slides below include an Accessible, Section 508 Compliant Version of the PowerPoint.

Webinar presentation slidesDownload PDF | Download PowerPoint
Find these Model Schools program links and info at CDE
Held: Thursday, May 14, 2020, from 12:30-2:30 p.m. (Pacific Time)
Topic: 2020-21 MCHS Recognition Program

Designation Period for Current Model Continuation High Schools

To verify the designation period for current model schools (MCHSs), see below.

Designation Periods for Model Schools
To avoid a gap period in your school’s MCHS designation status, current MCHSs would need to submit a new MCHS Recognition Program Application consistent with the “Program Year to Reapply to Avoid Gap Period” column in the table above.

A list of current MCHSs is available as part of the 2020–21 Model School Application, which may be found on the following web pages: California Department of Education Model School Recognition Program web pageCCEA Plus web page.

Invitation Letter

CCEA - AwardsDear Continuation Education High School Principals:

I invite you to participate in the Model Continuation High School (MCHS) Recognition Program sponsored by the California Department of Education (CDE) in collaboration with the California Continuation Education Association Plus (CCEA Plus).

The MCHS Recognition Program identifies and recognizes outstanding continuation high schools and creates a resource list for school visits. These model schools provide comprehensive services to at-risk youth through the use of exemplary instructional strategies, flexible scheduling, and guidance and counseling services.

Please review the eligibility criteria for the MCHS Recognition Program for 2020–21. Principals who intend to submit an application must complete the Intent to Submit form online in order to be considered for model school status. The online form will close on Thursday, October 15, 2020, at 4:00 p.m. Submission of the online form does not obligate the principal to submit an application.

The self-nomination application packet is available on the CDE MCHS Recognition Program web page and on the CCEA Plus MCHS web page. The packet includes instructions for completing the application, reference materials, and the forms to be submitted. Applications are due to the CDE by 4:00 p.m. on Thursday, October 22, 2020.

The timeline for the 2020–21 program year has been adjusted to accommodate the interruption of school schedules as a result of the Coronavirus. In addition, the CDE will be hosting a webinar, scheduled to be held on Thursday, May 14, 2020, for prospective applicants. Any principal interested in applying may participate. The webinar will provide information regarding the application and the application process. To sign up for the webinar and receive the required login information, check for scheduling and details on the CDE MCHS Recognition Program web page at

Successful applicants will be identified through an application evaluation and site visit process. As in previous years, we will recognize and present awards to successful MCHS Recognition Program applicants at the annual CCEA Plus State Conference.

If you have any questions regarding this subject, please contact Dan Sackheim, Education Programs Consultant, Educational Options Office, by phone at 916-445-5595 or by email at


Khieem Jackson, Deputy Superintendent
Equity and Access Branch

Last Updated: Thursday, May 7, 2020
CDE Letter dated: April 30, 2020