Chino Valley Unified School District (California)

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Chino Valley Unified School District
Chino Valley Unified School District (California) logo.jpg
5130 Riverside Drive,
Chino, California

San Bernardino County
United States
Coordinates 34°01′10″N 117°41′31″W / 34.01944°N 117.69194°W / 34.01944; -117.69194Coordinates: 34°01′10″N 117°41′31″W / 34.01944°N 117.69194°W / 34.01944; -117.69194
District information
Type Public
Grades K through 12
Established 1860 (1860)
Superintendent Wayne Joseph
District ID 0608460[1]
Students and staff
Students 31,992[1]
Teachers 1286.15 FTE[1]
Staff 456.33 FTE[1]
Other information
Website Chino Valley Unified School District

The Chino Valley Unified School District is a school district in San Bernardino County, California, United States. It serves the cities of Chino, Chino Hills, and Ontario, though originally it served only Chino when it was founded in 1860. It now encompasses 88 square miles (230 km2) and serves about 32,000 students from grades kindergarten up to 12th grade. CVUSD serves four high schools, five junior high schools, twenty-one elementary schools, one continuation school, and an adult school.

District government[edit]

  • Superintendent – Wayne Joseph, Ed.D.

Board of Education[edit]

As of May 2017:

  • President – Sylvia Orozco (term expires 2018)
  • Vice President – Pamela Feix (term expires 2018)
  • Clerk – James Na (term expires 2020)
  • Member – Andrew Cruz (term expires 2020)
  • Member – Irene Hernandez-Blair (term expires 2020)



The CVUSD has always been recognized for its outstanding schools and programs. About half of the schools in the CVUSD have reached the state's API standard of 800.

The school year begins on July 1 and ends on June 30 every year.


First Amendment issues[edit]

The Chino Valley Unified School District Board has been at the center of a number of controversies in recent years regarding issues of the First Amendment.

The CVUSD Board itself has also faced criticism for multiple years for having public prayers, Bible readings, and Christian proselytizing during its public meetings. The majority of Board members are members of either Calvary Chapel Chino Hills or other similar Christian conservative congregations in the district, and most regularly tout their religious beliefs during Board discussions. Despite numerous letters of complaint from various individuals and groups, the Board has either ignored these complaints or officially rejected to change their practices. The administration actively solicits local Christian pastors to lead Board invocations, and the Board regularly presents recognition awards to religious leaders who provide "support and prayers for the Chino Valley Unified School District".[3]

In July 2010, the CVUSD approved a resolution to introduce "Bible as Literature and History" courses at its four high schools, based on a curricula provided by the local Calvary Chapel Chino Hills church and the textbook The Bible and its Influence, written by Christian Evangelical educational political activist Charles Stetson.[4]

On November 11, 2014, the Freedom From Religion Foundation filed a federal lawsuit against the Board claiming violations of the US and California Constitutions. Although the suit alleged that all of the Board members regularly participated in religious proselytizing, James Na, current Board President, was singled out as a prime violator of religious neutrality during the meetings, regularly including Christian and Biblical references into many of his official statements. The suit alleges at one recent Board meeting, Na "urged everyone who does not know Jesus Christ to go and find Him," and closed the meeting with a reading of Psalm 143.[5][6] On February 18, 2016, U.S. District Judge Jesus Bernal made a ruling on the FFRF lawsuit, ordering the Board to stop reciting prayers, Bible readings, and proselytizing during school board meetings.[7] On March 4, 2016, the school board voted 3-2 in favor of appealing the ruling.[8]

On November 3, 2016, the Board changed their policies to explicitly state when board members can and cannot express their faith during meetings.[9]

School closures[edit]

On March 5, 2009, the Chino Valley Unified School District Board of Education voted 4 to 1 vote to approve a budget reduction plan which included the closure of El Rancho Elementary School and Richard Gird Elementary School, both in Chino, and Los Serranos Elementary School in Chino Hills. Ms. Sylvia Orozco, Board President, Mr. William Klein, Vice President, Mr. Fred Youngblood, Clerk and Mr. James Na, Board member all voted in favor of the budget reduction plan based on the recommendations of the Chino Valley Unified School District Superintendent, Dr. Edmond T. Heatley. Mr. Michael Calta, Board member was the dissenting vote. These three schools were closed at the end of the 2008/2009 school year and their students were reassigned to other schools in the District.

The process in which these schools were selected to be closed were alleged to violate California Education Code 17387, which states, "It is the intent of the Legislature to have the community involved before decisions are made about school closure or the use of surplus space, thus avoiding community conflict and assuring building use that is compatible with the community's needs and desires". Charges were made against the Board of racial / national origin motivations in choosing the schools that they did close.

A complaint was issued with the US Department of Education Office for Civil Rights regarding the nature and process followed for these school closings. On June 29, 2012, the OCR closed its investigation and released its final report of its findings of the allegations. The report found that, while there were good budgetary reasons for the District to be closing schools at this time, the process used to do so was ad-hoc and disorganized, and appeared to rely principally on the opinions of the District Superintendent with little documentation, public input or transparency. In response, the CVUSD agreed with the OCR's findings and adopted new formal policies for school closure which provided greater transparency and public input into the process.[10]

Conflict of interest and perjury[edit]

In 2006, a member of the school district board was charged with conflict of interest and perjury for allegedly benefiting from a contract between the school district and his employer. He is accused of steering district business to Office Max and failing to accurately report his income at that company in his annual conflict-of-interest statement with the school board. [11]


External links[edit]