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National University Academy Named 21st Century Learning Exemplar by P21

Exemplars nationwide feature how innovation makes learning possible for all students

December 8, 2015

San Diego, California, December 4, 2015 - P21, the leading organization advocating for 21st century learning for every student, has designated National University Academy (NUA)- Lakeside as an exemplar school, as part of a nationwide initiative identifying models of exemplary 21st century learning practices that are preparing students for success across the United States.

Now entering its 4th year, P21’s 21st Century Learning Exemplar Program shares case studies of schools and districts that have successfully transformed student learning through innovative and transformative practices that include collaborative teaching and learning, distributed leadership, student voice and choice, engaged community partnerships, a climate of achievement, and evidence-based practices into teacher practice, curriculum, assessment, and professional development.

The 2016 21st Century Learning Exemplars, including National University Academy-Lakeside, were selected along with 17 schools and 2 districts through a rigorous application process, and evaluated for educational excellence and 21st century learning implementation. The school, known as NUA-Lakeside, is chartered through the Lakeside Union School District in San Diego County and serves students from San Diego, Riverside and Orange Counties.

“At NUA, our students and staff have PRIDE—they are Productive and self-directed learners, Responsible and ethical citizens, Independent thinkers, Decision makers and problem solvers, as well as Effective communicators,” said Kimberleigh Marro, Executive Director for National University Academy. “It is important that we teach our students the skills they need to solve unfamiliar problems and being selected for this award validates the teaching, learning and evaluation strategies we use to prepare students for their futures.”

“Every student deserves to experience authentic 21st century learning” said Dr. Helen Soulé, P21 Executive Director. “P21 is proud to highlight the hard work exhibited by all P21 Exemplars as they redefine what teaching and learning means for students and educators in a world where learning doesn’t stop.”

Case studies on schools just announced, including National University Academy will be unveiled in 2016. All PreK-12 schools in the U.S. are eligible to be considered for the Exemplar Program and encouraged to apply between December 1 – January 15 at

Visit for a list of all Exemplars, case studies, powerful learning stories, podcasts, videos, and more. #PatternsofInnovation

P21 media contact:
Tatyana Warrick

School/district media contact:
Anna Cearley

School/district overview:
National University Academy, Lakeside (NUA) is a WASC- accredited program that offers a comprehensive academic K-12 education program, including UC “a-g” courses. NUA has a wide variety of instructor-led online classes in an engaging, interactive learning environment. Student enrolled at NUA can select classes to achieve a standard high school diploma with a career path focus, a diploma that qualifies for CSU or UC entrance or a GED. NUA-Lakeside which is chartered through the Lakeside Union School District, serves San Diego/Riverside/Orange Counties with: The Sparrow Program, a child-centered educational learning environment for K-6 students; The K-8 Homeschool Program; a Dual Language Program for K-8 students in which student learn core subject areas in English and Spanish; the 6th-12th grade Independent Study program; and the 1001 STEAM program, which serves students in grades 6-12, emphasizing instruction in the areas of science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics. NUA-Lakeside is part of the National University Academy network of public charter schools throughout the state of California. 

P21 recognizes that all learners need educational experiences in school and beyond, from cradle to career, to build knowledge and skills for success in a globally and digitally interconnected world. Representing over 5 million members of the global workforce, P21 is a catalyst organization uniting business, government and education leaders from the U.S. and abroad to advance evidence-based education policy and practice and to make innovative teaching and learning a reality for all.

Learn more at and @P21Learning