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Victimizing Students

Many students that graduated from PUSD high schools with better than passing grades in high school Algebra II and Pre-Calculus have been victimized. They were placed in remedial mathematics classes after taking the college mathematics placement exam. After receiving grades that those students and their parents believed indicated from certified teachers and accepted by the PUSD Board of Education mastery, when students entered college it was not true. Many had to take remedial classes in college lower than those that they passed in high school. The remedial classes were not accepted for college credit which extended the time students remained in college to obtain an undergraduate degree. The additional time resulted in a significant cost increase.

The members of the PUSD Board do not pay a price for misleading parents and students into thinking that they have mastered Algebra 2 and/or Pre-Calculus by certifying the grades the students received by issuing students diplomas. The teachers that issued students the passing grades do not pay a price for misleading students and their parents. Principals and counselors that declared to the Board that the students had acquired the knowledge, skill and applications required to successfully enter the next academic level do not pay a price. Only the students and their parents are the victims because they are the ones that have to pay for classes in college for which students received no credit thus staying in college longer before graduating.

Many students graduating from high schools in the PUSD this spring under the watch of the present Board of Education will have been victimized. PUSD students will continue to be victimized if the present practices in the PUSD continue or the present Board remains. Students will do assignments given by teachers in accredited schools, receive grades that should indicated mastery and graduate this Spring and subsequent Springs thinking they are prepared to move on to the next level. They will find out in the fall when they go to institutions of higher learning that they have been victimized. The continuing failure to address the problem leads to the belief that since PUSD is a majority minority school district, the Board believes nothing more could be expected. If Board members and Superintendent don't make the changes that are necessary to prevent students from being victimized, they should step down or be held liable.

Continuing, it was brought to the PUSD Board of Education in 1994 that there was no Board adopted "Guidelines for Secondary Counseling and Guidance". Now, twenty years later after repeated requests that the Board direct the staff to develop recommendations for Board consideration and approval, there are no Board approved "Guidelines for Secondary Counseling and Guidance". Is it, "They do not know or do not care? "Twenty (20) Years later and still no Board-approved program!!" Again, is the lack of action on the part of the Board and Superintendent due to the majority of students in the district are minority? Present social conditions require district guidelines for secondary counseling and guidance?

Additionally, for more than five years, two superintendents and several Board changes there is a refusal to develop an answer to the following question:

What professional development activities and strategies are employed or have been developed to better prepare school staff members to more effectively educate the significant number of student:

1. From group homes

2. Without many of the prerequisite skills needed to successfully do legitimate high school level courses, yet they are enrolled at the high school level

3. With attendance problems

4. Without, initially, the confidence, or motivation to complete or attempt assignments

5. Whose parents frequently are non-responsive to communications from the school or from classroom teachers

6. With some type of "street gang" affiliation

7. With inadequate study habits and skills

8. With often times unacceptable citizenship during class time

9. With sometimes defiant behavior

As of today, the Board has not directed the staff to develop an answered. Is it unreasonable to expect an answer to the above from a staff that is paid collectively approximately a million dollars annually?

Are members of the PUSD Board of Education demonstrating a concern for educating all students in the district? Are PUSD Board members negligent and therefore liable to pay the additional college expense incurred by students since the Board does not direct the staff to develop steps that address the problems?

Finally, "Do you see three-quarters of a billion dollars ($750,000,000.00) in facility improvements in the schools in the PUSD?" – Measures Y and TT plus State additions.



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