9th Grade Transition is a course for incoming freshmen at Gabrielino High School that prepares students for the rigor of high school and supports their post-secondary planning. Mrs. Maria Cruz (previously Ms. Celis) teaches all sections. Students are switched to Health with Mr. Kent Monteleone at the turn of each quarter.

Picture of Mrs. Cruz at the Drive Through Car Parade graduation ceremony in the Gabrielino High School parking lot.

In 9th Grade Transition, the course curriculum is divided into units that focus on familiarizing students with school resources, campus community, peer collaboration, research, academic and career planning, and technology. Students log into their student @sgusd.net Google accounts in order for their work to be submitted, reviewed, and graded through the course’s online Google Classroom.

Within the past six years, students who have taken 9th Grade Transition have experienced some unique events such as a Q&A with ASB, college field trips, and video conferencing with working professionals. As well, freshmen have worked to plan their high school courses, research colleges, and preparing for life after graduation including adult practical skills, pursuing part-time jobs, full-time careers, getting a driver's license, and personal finance. 

Picture of Mrs. Cruz's handmade sign congratulating the graduates that they made it and will always got this.


Overall, students have expressed satisfaction and continued interest in what the course has offered so far. Upperclassmen from years before 9th Grade Transition was introduced have been heard to say that the course should have been available to them when they were once freshmen. Based on the student quotes below, it is no surprise that 9th Grade Transition has been a valuable addition to the freshman experience here at Gabrielino High School.

  • “I’m getting ready for the next step in life” –Lawrence Ly, 9th grade (graduated 2019)
  • “This class is teaching me how to be a mature and responsible young adult as well as how to plan for a bright and successful future” –Araceli Bonilla, 9th grade (graduated 2019)
  • “This is the one class that doesn’t stress you on work, but instead guides you to have a wonderful time at Gabrielino High School and help achieve more for your future” –Raymond Liang, 9th grade (graduated 2019)
  • “I feel like this class really helps you plan for high school and college!” –Osiris Sesma, 9th grade (graduated 2019)