Sacramento School City Unified District new reform, called Linked Learning, is designed to lead schools school to success. In the summer of 2011, SCUSD’s Superintendent Jonathan Raymond launched a plan in effort to raise graduation rates with Linked Learning.
According to Linked Learning Alliance, “Linked Learning transforms the high school experience by bringing together strong academics, demanding technical education, and real-world experience to help students gain an advantage in high school, postsecondary education, and careers.”
In an article released by the District, “SCUSD increases graduation rates, decreases drop outs,” Superintendent Raymond stated, “We are working harder than ever to make school relevant, interesting and empowering for kids. Through our expanded career-themed academies, specialized small high schools and highly engaging classes, we’re focused on preparing our young people for success in both college and careers.”
Superintendent Raymond’s efforts to raise graduation rates through Linked Learning were successful for Hiram W. Johnson High School. In 2011, Johnson High School increased their graduation rates 9.1 percent from 57.2 percent to 66.3.
Johnson High School is a Small Learning Communities school (SLCs), a linked learning initiate. Each SLC has a group of approximately 400 students paired with a cluster of teachers focusing on core subjects, which are woven into a career theme.
An example of Johnson’s SLC is the Health and Medical Services (HMS) pathway which seeks to engage students in their education through the integration of Health Technology into the core curricular.
“I’m in the Health Medical Science pathway at Hiram [W.] Johnson High School,” says Brenda Martinez. “The HMS pathway has classes focused on science because most students who are a part of the pathway would like to have a career in health. HMS prepares us through these health classes that we take.”
According to an article from SCUSD, “Test Scores Appear to Validate SCUSD’s School Reform Efforts,” Linked Learning School, Johnson High School, also boosted up their CSTs scores.