Awards Criteria

Student Recognition is an important part of OPA's core philosophy and one of the ways students are encouraged to excel. Accomplishments will be recognized in a way that promotes future achievement and supports the mission of building the foundation for lifelong learning and success. Awards are distributed to deserving students who have met or exceeded OPA's high expectations. Achievement and RISE awards were created with the help of OPA staff from all school sites. Criteria for the President's Education Awards and Pathway to Civic Learning Awards are established by the issuing authority. 

Achievement Awards 

At the end of each grading semester, OPA Middle School recognizes students for their achievement in the subject areas of English language arts, mathematics, social studies, world language, physical education, and elective grades. Awarded at the end of each semester to all grade levels.
  • Chancellor's List: 4.0 GPA for the semester (All A's).
  • Dean's List: 3.5-3.9 GPA for the semester (No Ds, or Fs)

RISE Awards

RISE Awards are presented each quarter to students who exhibit the characteristics of Respect, Integrity, Scholarship, and Empathy. RISE Awards are part of the middle school Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS) that recognize, support, and celebrate positive behavior. Each professor will recognize 4 students each quarter that exemplify each characteristic, based on school-wide expectations and our school matrix each quarter. Awarded at the end of each quarter to all grade levels. 
  • Respect Scholar Award
  • Integrity Scholar Award
  • Scholarship Scholar Award
  • Empathy Scholar Award 

President's Education Awards

Founded in 1983, the President's Education Awards Program honors graduating elementary, middle, and high school students for their achievement and hard work. The program provides individual recognition from the President and the U.S. Secretary of Education to those students whose outstanding efforts have enabled them to meet challenging standards of excellence. This program is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Education and in partnership with the National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP). Awarded at the end of each school year to 8th graders.
Educational Excellence Award Educational Achievement Award
  • Overall 3.5 GPA minimum in core subjects 7th and 8th grade
  • 3.0 minimum overall GPA in core subjects in 7th and 8th grade
  • Level of 4 (exceeded standards) on CAASPP ELA and Math in 7th grade
  • At least level of 3 (met standards) on CAASPP ELA and Math in 7th grade

Pathway to Civic Learning Awards

The Civic Learning Pathways certificate/award aligns elementary and middle school grades to the State Seal of Civic Engagement that can be earned in high school. Awards are distributed by the Orange County Department of Education to students who have met specific performance outcomes upon completion of designated grades. Awarded at the end of each school year to 8th graders.
  • Students demonstrate knowledge of economics, geography, history, as well as principles and foundations of our American democracy
  • Students demonstrate civic disposition and traits
  • Students demonstrate an ability to solve public problems by participating in civic and democratic processes