Apply to Become a Model School
We invite all continuation high schools in the state to submit an application to become a “Model School” for 2023-2024, sponsored by the California Department of Education (CDE).
The Model Continuation High School (MCHS) Recognition Program identifies and recognizes outstanding programs and creates a resource list of quality programs for school visitations. These schools provide comprehensive services to at-risk youth through the use of exemplary instructional strategies, flexible scheduling, and guidance and counseling services. The CDE encourages continuation high schools that meet the eligibility criteria to submit an application.
Quick links: Timeline | Application Forms | Designation Period | Webinar Info | Invitation Letter | Pay Fee
Intent to Submit Deadline: August 31, 2023
Principals who intend to submit an application must complete the MCHS Application “Intent to Submit” Survey online here. The survey will close on Thursday, August 31, 2023, at 4:00 p.m. Submission of the survey does not obligate the principal to submit an application.Intent to Submit Survey
Application Deadline: September 6, 2023
Applications must be submitted to the CDE electronically as a single PDF via the CDE exFiles File Transfer System. (See application for specific instructions.) Applications must be received by no later than 4 p.m. on Wednesday, September 6, 2023. The CDE will perform an initial review of applications. This will allow participants to ensure that the single PDF submitted in the exFiles File Transfer System is complete and has been uploaded properly. Corrected applications are due for final submission to the CDE by 4 p.m. on Thursday, September 14, 2023.
Program Contact: Dan Sackheim, Educational Options Office, CDE
April 4, 2023 — Applications available to the field.
May 3, 2023 — Application Webinar.
August 31, 2023 — Intent to Submit Survey to be completed.
September 6, 2023 — Applications due.
September 14, 2023 — Applications corrected per screening due.
October 6, 2023 — Northern Applications reviewed and rated.
October 13, 2023 — Southern Applications reviewed and rated.
October 16, 2023 – December 15, 2022 — Site Validation Visits.
November 30, 2023 — Application fees due (click link to make payment).
December 15, 2023 — District Audit Reports due.
February 6, 2024 — Schools notified.
April / May 2024 — Awards ceremony.
Please note: it is strongly recommended that all schools process payments online rather than by mail to meet the deadline. You can now pay the Model School Applicant School Review and Evaluation fee online here.
Application Forms | Downloads
Invitation Letter — Letter inviting principals of continuation high schools to apply for the 2023–24 MCHS Recognition Program.
Intent to Submit — Online form will close on Thursday, August 31, 2023, at 4 p.m.
Model School Application 2023-2024:MCHS Recognition Program Application 2023-2024 | Overview and Instructions to complete and submit the application | PDF Version | Word Doc
Attachment A – Application Cover Sheet | PDF Version — either a wet signature or electronic signature will be accepted.
Attachment B – School Information Sheet | PDF Version
Attachment C – Certification Form | PDF Version (updated 5/15/23) — either 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
Annual Assurance of Services Forms for Current Model Schools (MCHSs):2022 MCHSs | PDF Version — added 4/5/23
2021 MCHSs | PDF Version — created 3/21/22
2020 MCHSs | PDF Version — revised 3/21/22
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 (see table below). This form certifies that the school meets or exceeds the MCHS Recognition Program standards. Links to Annual Assurance of Services Forms for current MCHSs are provided above. Due to current working conditions related to COVID-19, forms may include either an electronic signature or typed name and must be submitted to Dan Sackheim, Education Programs Consultant, Educational Options Office, by email at CONTINUATIONEDUC@cde.ca.gov.
Alternately, you can download the latest application forms at CDE.
Designation Period for Current Model Continuation High Schools
To verify the designation period for current model schools (MCHSs), see below.
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 2023–24 Model School Application above. You can also see all current Model Schools here.
Webinar with CDE:
Held: Wednesday, May 3, 2023, from 9:30–11:30 a.m. (Pacific Time)
Topic: 2023–24 MCHS Application
The webinar held on May 3, 2023, provided an overview of the 2023-24 MCHS Application, how to complete the application, and the application review process. The links below are for the PowerPoint from the webinar.
View or download the presentation slides: PowerPoint version (PPTX) | PDF version
Notes from CDE after the webinar presentation — “During the webinar, we reviewed the application and the application process for the 2023–24 Model Continuation High School (MCHS) Recognition Program. The PowerPoint from the webinar is now available here on the CDE website and above on the CCEA+ website. You may wish to refer to this resource as you work to develop your application. If you have any questions regarding the webinar, please contact the Educational Options Office by phone at 916-323-2183 or by email at CONTINUATIONEDUC@cde.ca.gov.”
Prior notes shared before the presentation — “A webinar for prospective applicants is scheduled to be held on Wednesday, May 3, 2023. Any principal interested in applying may participate or whomever they appoint to attend in their place. The webinar will provide information regarding the application and the application process. It will point out items that have disqualified applicants in previous years and will address as many questions as possible submitted during the webinar.”Find more program updates and info at CDE.
Dear Continuation Education High School Principals:
We 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 celebrates outstanding continuation high schools throughout California. The program also recognizes these schools as a resource for local educational agencies and other continuation high schools that may be able to adapt successful approaches and practices of these model schools in their learning communities. California’s MCHSs provide comprehensive services to students whose needs and strengths can be better met within these specialized settings using exemplary instructional strategies, flexible scheduling, and guidance and counseling services.
Please review the eligibility criteria for the MCHS Recognition Program for 2023–24. 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, August 31, 2023, 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 Model School Recognition Program web page. The packet includes instructions for completing the application and required forms, reference materials, and instructions for submitting the application via the CDE exFiles File Transfer System. Applications are due on Wednesday, September 6, 2023. The CDE will perform an initial review of applications. This will allow applicants to ensure that the single PDF submitted in the exFiles File Transfer System is complete and has been uploaded properly. Applications are due for final approval and submission to the CDE by 4:00 p.m. on Thursday, September 14, 2023.
The CDE will be hosting a webinar on Wednesday, May 3, 2023, for prospective applicants. Any principal interested in applying may participate. The principal may also designate someone else to attend in their place. 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 above or on the CDE MCHS Recognition Program web page.
Successful applicants will be identified through an application evaluation and site visit process. Representatives from the CDE and CCEA Plus will honor and present awards to 2022–23 MCHS Recognition Program awardees at the annual CCEA Plus State Conference (please note: the 2024 Conference will be announced in the fall of 2023).
If you have any questions regarding this program, please contact Dan Sackheim, Education Programs Consultant, Educational Options Office, by phone at 916-323-2183 or by email at CONTINUATIONEDUC@cde.ca.gov.
Steve Zimmer, Deputy Superintendent
Student Support Services Branch
Nancy Kim Portillo, Deputy Superintendent
Student Achievement Branch
Important Dates to Remember
- A webinar will be held on Wednesday, May 3, 2023 from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. (Pacific Time) for prospective applicants.
- The Intent to Submit online form must be submitted by 4 p.m. on Thursday, August 31, 2023.
- A single PDF of the completed application must be submitted to the CDE via the exFiles Transfer System. Applications must be received by 4 p.m. on Wednesday, September 6, 2023.
- In accordance with the application screening process, if corrections are made, submit a revised single PDF of the application to the CDE via the exFiles File Transfer System. Corrected applications must be received by 4 p.m. on Thursday, September 14, 2023.
Deadline requirement: Any applications that are not received by the September 6, 2023, deadline will be disqualified. Corrections may only be made to applications that are received by the September 6, 2023, deadline.
CDE Postings Tuesday, April 4, 2023. Revised 5/16/23.