Charter schools that allow students to recover credits through online courses are serving as an escape hatch for high school students in San Diego Unified who are least likely to graduate.
Between 2014 and 2016, at least 891 students left San Diego Unified high schools for charter schools geared toward helping at-risk students recover credits, according to data from five local charter schools. Some students told Voice of San Diego that principals and teachers at traditional schools had recommended they leave for these charter schools.
At the time they transferred, 551 students – roughly 62 percent – were one or more semesters behind on the credits they needed to graduate high school.
But instead of making up those credits in a San Diego Unified high school, they transferred to a charter school where they didn’t have to complete the same college-prep classes as students in district high school. The district, then, simply factored them out of the class of 2016.
The 551 students who transferred to charter schools only represent a fraction of the 6,428 total students in San Diego Unified’s class of 2016. Still, had they dropped out or failed to graduate, it would had a notable impact on the overall graduation rate – dropping it from 92 to 83 percent.
Superintendent Cindy Marten and school board members have repeatedly held up its graduation rate as validation of its approach – they even mentioned it in a recent resolution inviting U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos to visit so she could see first-hand what’s being accomplished in San Diego schools.
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Lying is bad. And greater all around transparency is good. The kids should be moved to other schools based only when it's considered to be in the best interest of the student, not to game graduation metrics.
But aren't these kids ultimately better off? They're seemingly getting a diploma of some sort, vs. dropping out. Perhaps they're better suited to other types of learning?
Yes, in a perfect world every student could get a diploma based on challenging college-prep work. But it's my understanding that having a HS diploma of any kind is vastly preferable to none.
@MarioKoran @DistrictDeeds wordpress com @sdschools Good job Mario! When you add this to the earlier evidence you presented and the other SDUSD diploma mill schemes ways we exposed on District Deeds, the REAL graduation rate is probably around 65-75%. Evidence of this is shown on the number of SDUSD students who cannot pass placement tests when entering college and have to pay for remedial, no credit, college classes just to begin when entering local community colleges,
The only issue I have with the article is the hesitancy to call an untrue statement what it is...it is a lie. here is a quote from your article:.
" “The district does not have a policy of referring students to charter schools,” district spokesperson Jennifer Rodriguez wrote in an email.
But that wasn’t true. "
It should be: "But that was a LIE."
Until all of us hold the SDUSD to the truth and call them what they are...liars...when they deny obvious facts, they will be able to continue to abuse their power and deny all students the education they need.
Keep up the good work!!!
IMHO, the District lying to a member of the press or refusing to respond to an inquiry from Mario as a member of the press is also part of a news story. With press credentials, all Mario has to do is go to one of the many "press only" press conferences and ask the question directly of Marten or a board member every time and have them refuse to answer on tape, and then report it.
Again IMHO, Lies by government employees cannot be minimized or soft sold to maintain access or to be polite at the risk of allowing unethical manipulation of the press and deception of Stakeholders by the SDUSD propaganda machine.
The only thing that would make lying by the SDUSD NOT a news story is that Marten, Barrera, Evans,McQuary, Beiser and Payne lie so much to the Stakeholders that it really is not "news".
Thanks for your perspective!
Really? The lowest performing students go on-line to help improve the graduation rates in San Diego? Someone is drinking bad water. Students going on-line are the privileged few who don't fit into the normal life in high school. Those students are from parents that have foregone responsibility for their kids. And, those kids are the same that will go to college to avoid reality and end up baristas in Seattle. Those kids should have been given a reality dose and given their first pink slip...at school. The school district should not support these "charter schools" that are a bad excuse for real school.
@John H Borja Hi John, feel free to stop by Diego Hills Charter on College at any time to get a first hand account of what the Charter is doing for the students.
Excellent reporting. Human beings are remarkably resourceful creatures, aren't we? Well done, San Diego Unified. We now return you to the regularly scheduled bashing of charter schools by those public school administrators and teachers who "care about the kids."