Students at Bonsall High School are graded on learning outcomes that will prepare them for the future.  Rather than being assessed on categories like tests, quizzes, and homework, those types of assigned tasks are assessed in specific skill sets to give students helpful feedback about their readiness for the future.


Written Communication

Bonsall High School requires students to communicate in writing to a variety of audiences throughout the school year.  As students will be required in the future to write using vocabulary specific to their professional field, BHS teaches students to write using academic language in each class. Student writing is assessed based on Written Communication rubrics adopted from the New Tech Network.


Oral Communication

Oral Communication is a top skill required of employees in nearly all professional fields, yet many times in schools, student are in the passenger seat as listeners rather than the driver's seat of their own education.  At BHS, students present to over 30 audiences a year to practice their presentation skills. Students presentations are assessed based on Oral Communication rubrics adopted from the New Tech Network.

Students working on math assignment

Content Knowledge & Thinking

While subject area material and traditional "content" is assessed throughout all learning outcomes, students are also assessed on critical thinking within each content area to ensure students master core knowledge that will be required in post-secondary settings.  Students are assessed based on Content Knowledge & Thinking rubrics adopted from the New Tech Network.

Students using shovels


Employers continually seek professionals who can work with a diverse population of individuals, more and more frequently on a global scale.  Bonsall High School teaches and supports collaboration skills among students in the classroom and with community professionals.  BHS requires students to collaborate on creative direction on final products, video production, prototyping, emerging technology platforms, and presentation methods throughout the year.  Students are assessed based on Collaboration rubrics adopted from the New Tech Network.

Students in a group writing on white board


Many young people expect their work to only require a single draft.  Yet employers expect employees to keep revising until a final product is of top quality.  Students at BHS develop an understanding of iteration, drafting, and a need for continual revision. Students are assessed in two main categories for agency:

  • Developing a Growth Mindset
  • Taking Ownership Over Learning

Students are assessed based on Agency rubrics adopted from the New Tech Network.

Project-Based Learning

To obtain future-ready learning outcomes BHS coursework is facilitated by teachers and mastered by students through authentic project-based learning. Project-based learning (PBL) is a research-based method of instruction in which students gain knowledge and skills by working for an extended period of time to investigate and respond to a complex question, problem, or challenge. 

Essential elements of rigorous and authentic project-based learning* include:

• Significant Content

• 21st Century Competencies

• Inquiry

• Driving Question(s)

• Need to Know

• Voice and Choice

• Critique and Revision

• Public Audience

*Adapted from Buck Institute for Education 

New Tech Network

Bonsall High School is a proud member of the New Tech Network (NTN) of nationwide schools. NTN schools contain the hallmarks of rigorous project-based learning, seamless use of 1:1 technology, and a positive and empowering student culture. Started in Napa, CA in 1996, the New Tech Network has now grown to include over 150 schools in 26 states (and Australia!). Bonsall High School is the first NTN school in San Diego County, but has 27 other California school neighbors. NTN schools pay attention to long-term outcomes including critical thinking skills, graduation rates, and college retention rates.  See the 2017 Impact Report for the New Tech Annual Data Report