Branham High School

Branham School Profile 2020-21
Vision, Mission, Student Learner Outcomes

Welcome to Branham High School!
A message from Principal Cheryl Lawton:

About Us: Branham High School has embraced the mission of educating and preparing our students to be active, involved citizens. Since our campus reopened in 1999 after a decade of closure, educational professionals and families have gravitated here to build a school that welcomes challenge and craves innovation. Growing from 1450 to 1950 students over the past 5 years, we are proud of the work we are doing to prepare all students for success in our 21st Century world. Thanks to the hard work, skill and dedication of our staff, students, and families, Branham students continue to perform among the top in the state in academics, athletics, and extra-curriculars. As evidence, Branham earned the California Distinguished School award for 2021, one of only four public high schools in our County this year.


What's Our Why? Branham High School offers a wide breadth of curriculum choices in a standards-based academic environment. Our curriculum includes college prep courses, vocational and technology programs, applied arts and fine arts electives, dual enrollment classes through West Valley College, and a variety of programs for students with special needs. Advanced Placement courses are offered in English (Language, Literature), Social Science (World History, U.S.History, American Government, Psychology), Science (Biology, Chemistry, Physics), Math (Computer Science, Statistics, Calculus), World Language (Spanish, French, Mandarin) and Fine Arts (2D, 3D). In addition to strong multi-year PLTW engineering, visual arts, and performing arts pathways, we have 30+ campus clubs as well as numerous championship athletics teams to provide enriching extra-curricular opportunities. Our school newspaper, the Bear Witness, has won multiple national awards and is considered among the top 50 in the country. We are confident that whatever interests your students may have, they will find their niche here at Branham.


As we move into the 2021-22 school year, we look forward to continuing to expand on the many different programs and opportunities we offer for our Branham students, as well as continue our commitment to provide a model of innovative education. Our goals are for all students to graduate from Branham having completed a full UC A-G curriculum along with vocational exposure so that they are both college and career ready and prepared. This year for example we are introducing a Business pathway to complement our successful Visual and Performing Arts, Engineering, and Computer Science pathways. No matter how many times they might change their minds about what they want to do after high school, we want to ensure that all doors are open to them now as well as in the future.


While we believe that academics and career exploration are important, we find it equally important to focus on our students’ social-emotional needs. We are continuing to build on the success of our campus Wellness Center to provide our students with a variety of mental health supports, including crisis support, drug and alcohol intervention, grief counseling, and healthy relationship development, among other services.


Link to Branham Vision, Mission, Student Learner Outcomes

College and Career => Eligible and Prepared:

  • Regardless of program, all students will be challenged with a rigorous, engaging, standards-based curriculum that meets 4-year college eligibility requirements.
  • A range of dual enrollment classes sponsored by West Valley College will continue to be offered to Branham students each semester for additional enrichment and college exposure. [Typically on campus, but will continue to be offered online for Fall 2021. We expect to be back in-person in Spring 2022.]
  • Opportunities for Career-Technical Education (CTE) exploration and experience will be provided through the College and Career Center, Work Experience, SVCTE, and Outreach programs.

Focus on the ‘Whole Child’:
(Based on student and parent survey results as well as feedback from our community, we are focusing our resources on not only academics and career exploration, but also on our students’ social-emotional needs.)

  • We are the first school within CUHSD to provide a campus Wellness Center.  Staffed by a full-time Social Worker, we are able to offer both students and families a range of mental health, crisis support, drug and alcohol intervention, grief counseling, and healthy relationship development, among other services. We are hopeful that this will become a positive model for all schools in CUHSD.
  • Branham staff participate in specific and targeted professional development for school staff aimed at supporting student social-emotional health, and similarly we provide a multitude of resources to our students.

New state-of-the-art Science Lab classrooms:

  • The newly completed science buildings at the corner of Dent and Branham house our Living Earth (Biology), Chemistry, Physics, PLTW and math classes.

School Safety:

  • Other than upgrading our cafeteria kitchen area and installing an awning over the front doors of the main office building, all Measure AA construction is now complete. For those who need to enter the campus during the school day, the only entrance will be through the main office. Other gates on campus will be locked to ensure that those who are here are those who are supposed to be here.
  • High-definition cameras with infrared night vision and Internet access are installed throughout campus. While we don’t generally look at the recordings unless necessary, we are able to go back several weeks to review any concerns or incidents.
  • Classrooms are equipped with communication systems that allow for whole-school and individual room voice and digital exchange of information.
  • Plans are being made to purchase/install new keyless door-lock systems that allow for school staff to lock/unlock doors quickly in the event of an emergency both with a card or remotely. We expect these to start being installed campus-wide during the 2021-22 school year.

Athletics- all Measure AA bond work is now complete. This includes:

  • Football Stadium: New Scoreboards, Press Box, Audio, Lighting
  • Fields: New Dugouts, Scoreboards, Landscape
  • Large Gym: Merv 13 Air conditioning installation and Seismic Retrofitting 
  • Pool: Our new olympic-sized swimming pool allows for safe diving and other water sports

Research shows that students are more successful and well-rounded when their parents are involved in their school. We hope you will join us in helping to make the educational experience for all of our students even stronger.  If you are a parent or community member, get involved. Check in with your students from time to time to get an idea of what they are learning, When you feel safe coming back to campus, attend one of the PTSA/Administration-sponsored Parent Information Nights, a showcase, performance or athletic event. Participate on one (or more!) of our many parent organizations such as PTSA, English Learner Advisory Committee (ELAC), Familias Unidas, Music Boosters, and/or Athletic Boosters. Participate as a guest speaker or job-shadow/internship host. Or make a financial donation to support the Wellness Center, student scholarships, and/or general school programs. The opportunities are many, and the effects will make a huge difference for our students as well as the entire Branham High School community.

We are excited to have you as a member of our Branham family! Go Bruins!

With warmest regards,

Cheryl Lawton
408-626-3407, x7101