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6 inspiring acts of kindness at Southern California schools

Nathania Johnson | February 2, 2016

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Michelle King, kindness

New LAUSD Superintendent Michelle King visits Century Park Elementary School, where she once attended.

2016 is off to a swift — and inspiring — start.

Schools across the country were bursting with inspiring headlines in January, from the Texas neighbors who moved an entire school in a week after it was destroyed by a Christmas tornado to the math teacher who made it possible for a colorblind sophomore to see color for the first time, and the 90-year-old Indiana woman who crocheted 300 hats for every single student a local elementary school.

Here are six more sweet January stories from across Southern California worth sharing:

January 21: Pomona high school senior is one of 55 students in the world to score perfect on her AP Spanish examKarina Aguilar is accustomed to getting good grades. She’s a straight-A student at Garey High School in Pomona. But even Aguilar was shocked to learn that she earned not just a 5, but a perfect score on the AP Spanish exam. She is the first in the Pomona Unified School District to earn the accolade. Aguilar only began studying Spanish her junior year. She spent the first two years of high school studying French. (Read more: Daily Bulletin)

It’s been decades since Michelle King was a student at Century Park Elementary School, but she seemed right at home on…

Posted by Los Angeles Unified School District on Tuesday, January 19, 2016

January 19: New LAUSD superintendent sets aside time to read to elementary school studentsMichelle King will now serve as superintendent in the very school district she grew up in. To celebrate her appointment, she returned to Century Park Elementary School, which she once attended, to read “Howard B. Wigglebottom Learns About Courage” to students. The book encourages children to face their fears. (Read more: Facebook)

January 19: San Bernardino school security officers honored for bravery during terrorist attack — A reception was held last week to honor officers from San Bernardino Unified School District and the Fontana Unified School District. The San Bernardino officers responded to the Inland Regional Center where the attack took place. The Fontana officers responded to schools in both their district and the San Bernardino district while the community was on lockdown. Those honored accepted the accolades with humility, saying they were just doing their jobs. (Read more: ABC 7)

January 8: Newport Beach program supports homeless students well beyond high school, through age 24 — The Promotor Pathway program is a partnership between the nonprofit Project Hope Alliance and the Newport-Mesa Unified School District. It will provide each student with a mentor to guide them through high school graduation as well as college and career. The program expects to assist 50 local students. According to the Orange County Department of Education, there were 32,510 homeless children in the county during the 2013-2014 school year. (Read more: The Orange County Register)

January 21: Lompoc elementary students celebrate Thank Your Mentor Day with their high school mentors — Twenty-eight “bigs” and “littles” have been paired through a collaboration by the Boys & Girls Club, Lompoc High School and Big Brothers Big Sisters of Santa Barbara County. The young kids gave handmade cards to their mentors during a ceremony at the Lompoc Boys & Girls Club. (Read more: Lompoc Record)

January 8: Rancho Cucamonga veteran receives his diploma 70 years after his high school education was interrupted by military service — 92-year-old Harry Brady served in the Army during World War II, leaving high school to fulfill his patriotic duty. The Operation Recognition Veterans Diploma Project awards high school diplomas to veterans who did not graduate due to participation in World War II, the Korean War or the Vietnam War. Brady’s daughter submitted his application without his knowledge. He was too frail to attend a formal ceremony in November, so he was presented the diploma in January in his Rancho Cucamonga home. Here’s our recent profile of another Operation Recognition recipient, Ruben Peters:

Have you seen something inspiring or extraordinary at a school? Share the good news with us at and we will do our best to get it on the site.

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