Success Stories

Virtual 3rd Annual Bright Spots in San Bernardino County

March 1, 2022

Bright Spots? Bright spots are the things that are happening in our districts that are working and making an impact for students. Bright spots can be the way districts implement programs for students, providing services to students, or innovations occurring in our districts that are different and making a difference for students. These don't have to be at the level of being perfect but acknowledging that the district has taken a risk and moved out of the box to improve instruction and services for English learners and multilingual programs.

Diagram of the Improvement Cycle of Implementation<
Improvement Cycle of Implementation

The Bright Spots Colloquium is based on the Improvement Cycle of Implementation. Improvement cycles are based on a Plan, Do, Study, Act process.

Plan - identify a goal or purpose and putting a plan into action

Do - carry out the strategies or plan as specified to address the challenges

Study - use the measures identified during the planning phase to assess and track progress

Act - make changes to the next iteration of the plan to improve implementation

This specific colloquium is centered on best practices for the success of English learners

Professional Photo of Cherina Betters, Ed.D.<
Keynote Speaker: Dr. Cherina Betters, Chief of Equity and Access

Participants, started in the general session with a welcome from our County Superintendent, Ted Alejandre and a keynote. This year we featured our very own Dr. Cherina Betters as our keynote speaker. Dr. Betters is the Chief of Equity and Access for San Bernardino County Superintendent of Schools. A lifelong learner, she has been in the field of K-12 education for over two decades in the capacity of teacher and administrator serving the students, families and communities of San Bernardino and Riverside counties in southern California. Dr. Betters has always viewed education as the means to overcome. The first in her family to graduate from college, Dr. Betters has a deep appreciation for education and the educational process. Dr. Betters has been recognized by numerous organizations for her service to educational equity including being named 23rd Senate District of California Woman of the Year, and Transformational Change Leader by California State University, San Bernardino. Dr. Betters is committed to advocating for students and educational excellence through equity. Dr. Betters is the proud parent of 6 children and one grandchild.

PowerPoint presentation of breakout session with zoom participants<
Chaffey Joint UHSD: ELLevation Implementation
PowerPoint presentation of breakout session with zoom participants<
Rialto USD: Listening to Teacher Needs In Order to Support All English Learners

After the powerful keynote, participants selected their sessions and were moved to their breakout rooms. The importance of this colloquium is for our districts to have the opportunity to share best practices that have proven to work for their English learner students. If they are working, then we want them to share them with other districts so they can replicate them. This year we had eight sessions presenting on various topics that addressed implementation of programs for English learners and multilingual programs:

  • Rim of the World USD: English Learner (EL) Data Chats, Path to Reclassification

  • Chino Valley USD: From Reclassification to the State Seal of Biliteracy

  • SBCSS: County Resources for EL Data

  • Chaffey Joint UHSD: ELLevation Implementation

  • San Bernardino City USD: Dual Immersion for High School – Connecting Students to Opportunities for Real-Life Application

  • San Bernardino City USD: Micro-Internships: High Impact Work-Based Learning Experiences Leveraging Multilingual Skills of Diverse Learners

  • Ontario-Montclair SD: Pathway Seal of Biliteracy

  • Rialto USD: Listening to Teacher Needs In Order to Support All English Learners 

PowerPoint presentation of breakout session with zoom participants<
San Bernardino City USD: Dual Immersion for HS – Connecting Students to Opportunities
PowerPoint presentation of breakout session with zoom participants<
Chino Valley USD: From Reclassification to the State Seal of Biliteracy

After, participants joined back to the general session for an English Learner Directors' Panel session, where EL directors from various districts in our county were asked specific questions on program implementation and they provided a response for the audience to learn from them. This session was moderated by Dr. Christina Pierce, Director, Curriculum, Instruction and Academic Enrichment for San Bernardino County Superintendent of Schools.

Five Zoom screens displayed consisting of directors' panel and moderator<
Directors' Panel

This year's director panel consisted of:

  • Apple Valley USD – Mariana Torres, Director,
    Equity and Access

  • Chino Valley USD Stacy Ayers Escarcega, Ed.D, Director, Access and Equity - Curriculum, Instruction, Innovation, and Support

  • Morongo USD – Danielle Snider, Ed.D, Director,
    Elementary Curriculum and Instruction

  • Redlands USD – Sonya Balingit, Director,
    English Learners & Parent Engagement


We ended the event with prizes as we rolled the wheel of fortune (virtually)!

Wheel of Fortune with participants names for a chance to win prizes<
Bright Spots Winners