According to California Department of Education, in Sacramento alone 13% of the class of 2012 dropped out last year. High school is war. It is a battle zone of students all striving to be successful. But the reality of life is that not every student is going to be successful. Quite a bit of them fall in between the cracks. While the current stats are a decrease from previous years, thirteen percent of students is far too many to lose. Despite this number, this dropout rate is considerably different in comparison to previous years.
SCUSD trying to catch students before they fall through the cracks
Last June, the Sacramento City Unified School District put out a press release reporting an increase in graduation rate and decrease in dropout rates. They then pointed out the surprising results of a few priority schools, which included Luther Burbank High School, Sacramento New Technology High School, Hiram Johnson High School and Arthur A. Benjamin Health Professions. All of theses school saw a considerable decrease in dropout rates in African American and Hispanics. Hiram Johnson, probably the most infamous for dropout rates, “increased its graduation rate 9.1 percent from 57.2 percent to 66.3 percent” according to the press release. The reason for the change in percentages are not yet clear, as none of the schools have a whole lot in common except they are almost all priority schools for the SCUSD.
According to Lynne Ruvalcuba, a Hiram Johnson English teacher, the decrease in dropout rates are the results of the supportive teachers.
“We are more conscience towards the students who need the extra support, and we are making it our goal to all work together to insure they do not fall in between the cracks,” stated Ruvalcuba.
At Hiram Johnson, and at most of theses schools, the saying “no child is left behind” is becoming more of a literal statement. The staff now plays a very active role in the lives of many students lives.
And while the SCUSD has received an overall “report card” grade of a D from reportcards.ed, many students like Che Vang would argue that the staff deserved an A.
“Everyone one of my teachers goes out of their way to make sure I succeed and encourage me to go onto college,” said Vang.
Reportcard.ed unfortunately found that still despite various improvements, African American students are still not treated as well as their Caucasian counterparts at school. Our education system has a long way to go, and everyday is a chance for improvement.