Award Year: 2013

La Canada Elementary School

4540 Encinas Drive
La Canada, CA, 91011-2217

(818) 952-8350

Christine Castillo, Principal at time of Nomination

La Canada Unified School District

School Website


To provide a rich educational environment where all students think critically, solve complex problems, express themselves articulately, and work cooperatively in a culturally diverse world.

Student Demographics
  • Black/African American: 1%
  • White: 58%
  • Hispanic: 2%
  • Asian: 25%
  • Native American: 1%
  • Two or more races: 13%
  • ELL: 12%
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Situated in the foothills of the San Gabriel mountains, La Cañada Elementary (LCE), upholds an enduring commitment to providing a first-class education to our students. Home to over 600 proud “Lions”, LCE was honored in 2010 as a recipient of the California Distinguished School award and is currently the highest ranking school in the district with an API score of 970.

At LCE, the hallmark of our success is embedded in our school culture. Developing and sharing effective instructional practices is an integral part of our continual success. Key to this practice is an emphasis on collaboration through professional learning communities within and outside our campus.

Our staff is committed to knowing students from the time they enter Kindergarten to the time they promote to 7th grade. Teachers stay connected with children through a variety of experiences on and off campus. School pride is fostered through student led activities, which promote accountability and ownership. We believe all students can achieve and we motivate our children to believe this too.

LCE PTA proactively engages school families and the community in support of student achievement and school improvement. Through its largest fundraiser, Halloween Haunt, PTA raises over $100, 000 which funds enrichment programs and instructional resources every year. In partnership with The La Canada Flintridge Educational Foundation, we provide rigorous instruction in visual and performing arts, technology, and Spanish.

Enabling shared leadership at all levels is another way we have succeeded in making La Cañada Elementary a place where students learn and thrive. As best expressed in a line from our school song, “LCE, where the students all are free, to learn and live and grow, independently”.