Our Focus

What We Fund

Our Role

Torrance Education Foundation engages the community – parents, families, businesses and concerned citizens – to ensure students in Torrance have the 21st century tools and learning experiences they need to thrive and compete in the academic marketplace.

Through grantmaking programs and community engagement fundraising activities, Torrance Education Foundation annually provides significant financial investment and services to support the academic excellence of students enrolled in Torrance Unified School District (TUSD). In the past five years, TEF has invested more than $6 million in our students’ academic success.

Responsive Support for Key TUSD Priorities

Close to 24,000 students are served by TUSD. While California state school funding provides the basic resources to employ instructors, aides, and administrators, many programs and amenities fall outside the realm of affordability.

In recent years, TEF has channeled the Torrance community’s support to supply much needed state-of-the-art assets, devices and services for TUSD students and educators that would not otherwise have been possible, including:

  • Equipping seventeen new dedicated Science Lab Classrooms** – one at each TUSD elementary school – with the tools, devices, study materials, learning aids (a moveable skeleton, for example), and other supplies. (**This project is still underway as fundraising for Phase III continues. Please contact Shireen Ossanlo (Email Me) for more information about supporting our Science Labs effort.)
  • Acquiring, installing and maintaining the first district-wide WiFi network to allow students and administrators on-campus access to tools only available online;
  • Building and equipping a dedicated, state-of-the-art computer learning lab at the TUSD Administrative Office for faculty and administrators;
  • Sponsoring teacher training in literacy, math, and science for elementary, middle, and high school teachers;
  • Underwriting the cost of substitute instructors during teacher training;
  • Fully funding the district-wide expansion and upgrade of eTUSD, a Technology-based learning platform incorporating software and hardware acquisition, online specialized library access subscription, teacher training, and professional development sessions.

STEM Initiative – Preparing Students for 21st Century Lives

TEF donors make possible dozens of TEF grants to teachers each year for hands-on, interactive STEM programs:

  • After-school Engineering Clubs
  • CyberPatriots Coding Club – cyber-security coding collaboration with the Air Force Association
  • Hour of Code – classroom computer coding beginning in early elementary grades
  • Math Counts – training and competition
  • STEM Nights for Family and Community
  • Robotics, incorporating TorBots**
  • Science Olympiad
  • StellarXplorers – satellite coding and programming collaboration with the Air Force Association

**TorBots takes great pride in being the first TUSD Robotics Club, launched more than a decade ago at South High School with support from TEF. Its success has spawned additional clubs, and in 2014, TEF expanded its funding for Robotics throughout the district, providing grants at Elementary, Middle and High Schools through the STEM Grants Initiative.

Scholarships for Graduating Seniors

In 2018, TEF awarded twenty-two scholarships totaling $39,000 to graduating seniors to assist them in their college pursuits. TEF scholarships are offered in collaboration with corporate and other local partners for those applicants who meet key academic and discipline-focused criteria.

Seniors at each of TUSD’s five high schools are notified each winter and encouraged to apply for available scholarship support. Each scholarship award winner is selected based on decision-making criteria established by TEF and its scholarship partners.

For more information about sponsoring a scholarship through TEF for a graduating senior, please contact Shireen Ossanlo.

South Bay Enrichment Academy

Each summer, more than 1,500 Torrance area students attend summer school at the South Bay Enrichment Academy (SBEA), a subsidiary of Torrance Education Foundation. Established by TEF in 2009, summer school coursework is offered for both Elementary and Secondary students for a period extending through June and July.

SBEA High School courses are accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). Any SBEA class offering high school credit can be used to meet graduation requirements at all TUSD high schools. Students from other school districts may enroll, and should check with their counselor’s office about petitioning for transcript credit.

Elementary and Middle School courses are offered for enrichment. Elementary classes are designed to develop the younger mind, offering structured study as well as educational play and themed activities. Middle School courses supplement the instruction students receive during the school year and provide a selection of unique specialty classes not typically found in normal curricula.

Afternoon sessions for Elementary and Middle School students offer enrichment, exercise, and team-building for those who wish to extend their summer school experience to a full day.

Click here for more information about typical classes and other SBEA details.

Torrance Education Foundation
20695 S. Western Ave., Suite 136
Torrance, CA 90501
(310) 320-7232