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Hundreds expected at rally today for LAUSD college-prep plan

Craig Clough | May 12, 2015

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A protestor outside LAUSD headquarters on June 10, 2014. t

As the LA Unified school board today prepares to debate fixes to its implementation of college prep graduation requirements, hundreds of people are expected to rally outside the district’s downtown headquarters in favor of the proposal.

The rally is scheduled for 4 p.m. to 5:30 p.m., roughly the same time the board is expected to be discussing the topic. The Unted Way, which is organizing the rally, said more than 500 people are expected.

The rally supports a resolution that calls on the board to address a growing problem created 10 years ago when it passed a new set of college-prep high school graduation requirements called A through G.

Designed to equalize access to college-preparing courses, it has backfired in that an estimated 75 percent of students in the class of 2017 — the first year the new standards take place — are not on pace to graduate.

Superintendent Ramon Cortines has called the A through G standards unrealistic and suggested to the Los Angeles Times that he is favor of reducing them. But the Equity on A-G: Re-affirming Our Commitment to A-G Life Preparation for All  resolution — co-sponsored by Mónica García and Steve Zimmer — essentially calls on the district to double down on its efforts and figure out better ways to get students to meet the standards.

The resolution calls for a district-wide audit of the A through G program, the creation of an intervention plan for schools failing to meet the standards and a requirement of an Individual Graduation Plan for all seniors.

“This resolution rings the alarm,” Elmer Roldán, Director of Education at United Way, said in a statement. “The community has fought to increase access to A-G for ten years. While more students have access to college today, students are still not given a high school diploma that allows them to choose their own path. The community is calling for an all hands on deck response to a policy that has not been effectively implemented.”

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