Canyon High School Aviation Science Pathway Recognized with Top Educational Honor

Orange, CA – November 1, 2018 – The Canyon High School Aviation Science Pathway has been chosen by the California School Boards Association (CSBA) as one of 51 recipients of the state’s leading educational honor, the Golden Bell Award. The Golden Bell Awards recognize outstanding public school programs for innovation, sustainability and best practices that facilitate positive student outcomes.

Canyon’s Aviation Science Pathway is the first of its kind in Orange County.  Classes in the pathway are valid for early college credit and help students to get a head start in their journey towards getting a private pilot license and eventually a commercial license or other aviation-related certificate. The Aviation Science Pathway offers students the rare opportunity to access flight simulators and other equipment critical in learning about aviation. Additionally, Canyon High has an on-site hangar that houses two partial airplanes, providing an enhanced learning environment for students to do hands-on exploration in addition to their traditional in-class curriculum.

“Our Aviation program has seen several students pursue Aviation after graduating from Canyon.  A handful have even earned their Private Pilot’s license while still in high school,” said Aviation Instructor Steve Smith. “As a teacher, it is awesome to see students taking what they have learned in the classroom and applying it in actual training situations.  Their love for airplanes and dedication to the industry is fun to watch!”

A 17-member judging panel made up of experts from school districts and county offices of education reviewed the written entries and made the initial recommendations for the awards. On-site validators then assessed the programs in action. This year’s awards are presented to school districts and county offices of education helping students achieve through after-school programs, mentoring, instructional interventions, use of data and other innovations.

“The Golden Bell recipients exemplify the spirit of innovation and excellence for which all of California’s public schools strive,” said CSBA CEO & Executive Director Vernon M. Billy. “The Golden Bell Awards reflect the depth and breadth of outstanding education offerings in our state, and demonstrate the tenacity, vision and dedication of school leaders across California.”

Orange Unified will be recognized at the Golden Bell reception and ceremony on Thursday, November 29, from 5 to 7 p.m. at CSBA’s Annual Education Conference and Trade Show in San Francisco at the San Francisco Marriott Marquis located at 780 Mission Street.

For more information about Canyon High School and their Aviation program, please visit



The Orange Unified School District educates approximately 26,000 PreK-12th grade students in the Cities of Orange, Villa Park, Anaheim, Garden Grove, Santa Ana, and unincorporated county areas.  In partnership with our community, we provide a safe, equitable, and innovative culture of learning for each scholar to have a competitive EDGE as a leader.