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Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo High School's Home Page

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The Cabrillo TIIP II team wanted to create a culturally relevant curriculum that effectively engages more students in active learning while connecting this learning to a student directed inquiry project in the community.


The questions we wanted to explore were:

  1. How can we close the achievement gap using a culturally relevant pedagogy model to address the academic and social needs of students so that they become active agents of change in their community, building bridges and crossing barriers?
  2. How can we learn about the critical issues of our local community and network with the appropriate agents of change to facilitate student action?
  3. How can we facilitate the student’s skill and application of technology/social media as a vehicle to create, record and communicate, to the community and beyond,  models of their projects? Our ultimate goal was for teachers to learn how to become facilitators of transformative education that is culturally relevant and responsive to Cabrillo students.


Trip to the National Chavez Center, May 28, 2013

Trip to the National Chavez Center, May 22, 2013

The Building Bridges, Crossing Barriers Cabrillo TIIP II Team dedicated the past two years to examining personal teaching practices and exploring strategies that supported the tenets of cultural relevancy as we planned new lessons and assessments. This web page is an archive of our experiences and student successes. One of the projects highlighted is the Civic Action Project (CAP). Created by the Constitutional Rights Foundation, students investigate and research a critical issue in the school and/or local community, develop a plan of action to address the issue, build a multi-media presentation to create awareness of the issue, and develop a policy to resolve or manage that issue.



Barbara Doten (

Barbara Doten History/Social Studies educator in the Cabrillo Academy of Law and Justice. I have been an educator for thirty-three years, beginning my career in the Los Angeles Unified School District in 1980 and transferring to the Long Beach Unified School District in 1996. I also worked at the Los Angeles County Office of Education from 2007-2010, managing the Teaching American History Grant for educators in the juvenile justice system. I still wake up most days excited about going to work and learning from my students.


Bernice Banares ( Banares

Special Education teacher for Reading Development and Life Science and member of the Cabrillo Academy of Law and Justice. I started teaching in 2002 at Cabrillo High School in the Mild/Moderate program, working mostly with students that have a learning disability. I became a Special Education teacher to be an advocate for my son diagnosed with Autism, and for the students and families that I work with and for.

Tom Valdez (

Tom Valdez History Teacher and Lead teacher for the Cabrillo High's Law and justice Small Learning Community-- Cabrillo Academy of Law and Justice (CAL-J). I've been with the Long Beach Unified School District my entire, over 25 years. I have been at Cabrillo for the past 7 years . Although I am a veteran educator, I realize that we must always keep learning ourselves. I am excited to be part of the TIIP experience and share new knowledge and strategies with my students and colleagues.



Cabrillo Pix

Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo High School is located on the west side of Long Beach and serves approximately 3,100 students. The local community is predominantly Hispanic/Latino, with a long established Filipino, Asian, Pacific Islander, and African American population.  Approximately 89% of the student body qualify for free or reduced lunch.  Local community programs include the Boys and Girls Club, which is located across the street from the school, the Westside Neighborhood Clinic, and the Teen Center at Silverado Park. Cabrillo is a Linked Learning School and has developed relationships with a variety of businesses, professional organizations, and  community partnerships that have also provided job training and internships to our students.


Click on the following links to see how we answered the following questions:

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1320 Moore Hall, Box 951521
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1521
(310) 825-4910