20
Thu, Jun

LAUSD: No Meaningful Reform without Meaningful Information

LOS ANGELES

GUEST COMMENTARY-The continuing generational fraud, the purposeful failing of predominantly Latino and African American students at the over 90% de facto segregated LAUSD, is accomplished by never addressing these minority students' subjective academic levels and needs. Such an open fraud could never take place without the collusion of the commercial and public media, which scrupulously refuse to report what is actually going on academically at LAUSD that the system makes no attempt to hide. 

In just the latest example of the media parroting of the disingenuous LAUSD party line ideas like "LAUSD board pushes for 100% graduation rate" by Los Angeles Times Reporter Sonali Kohli -- without any real reporter examination of such a goal in light of easily discoverable facts attainable through Public Records Requests  -- reporters continue to never address whether this pie in the sky LAUSD administration goal of 100% graduation has any real possibility of coming to fruition -- it doesn't as long as the truth as to what is going on at LAUSD is never reported. 

How much real reporting would it take for reporters like Sonali Kohli (photo above) to uncover the following publicly accessible facts showing:

 

LAUSD Cumulative Enrollment Counts

2014----------2015----------2016

608,478------598,298------595,840

 

Student Truancy Counts

2014----------2015----------2016

275,983------209,105------297,844

 

And then, might she ask those like Supt. Michelle King and the LAUSD Board members who have the gall to talk about “100% graduation” the following questions: 

How can you honestly expect to increase graduation rates if half of your enrolled students are chronically truant? 

This question might then lead to another question: Why are so many students truant, while LAUSD administration does nothing about it? 

Could it have anything to do with the fact that LAUSD policy has been to coerce teachers into giving passing grades and socially promoting all students -- whether or not they have mastered prior grade-level standards and are capable of doing the next grade-level's work – and that LAUSD administration has pushed them into in complete derogation of their actual academic ability? 

If Sonali Kohli, Howard Blume, and all the other reporters who are too afraid of losing their jobs were given free rein to do as Deep Throat advised Woodward and Bernstein to do in All the President's Men -- "follow the money" -- they might also then ask some of the following questions: 

How many students that are habitually truant are still reported as present for purposes of collecting Average Daily Attendance money from the state and other financing from the federal government like Title I? 

Does this amount to defrauding both the state and federal governments? 

If LAUSD's official 2016 graduation rate of 75% is anything but a made up number, why doesn't it align with either attendance figures or subsequent LAUSD student failure rates at community colleges, where 70% of incoming freshman are taking remedial and not college-level courses, because their high school diplomas aren't worth the paper they are printed on? 

Doesn't such post-LAUSD graduation academic failure also point to the knowing fraud in present high school credit recovery courses, given the widespread post high school failure and high incarceration rates of the large numbers of LAUSD high school graduates? 

It's not like Supt. King and the LAUSD Board members don't know the truth -- nobody's hiding it. Just go into almost any LAUSD school and you see the failed academic reality that their plan scrupulously ignores. 

This purposefully unaddressed failed reality of LAUSD schools is given a different insider's meaning by ex-school principal and now LAUSD board member George McKenna's comment regarding the 100% graduation rate: "It's a wonderful slogan," he says, but he has seen too much of LAUSD school reality to believe it. 

It is criminal that these “usual suspects” continue to mouth platitudes they know have no chance of succeeding without first addressing the abysmal, easily verifiable academic reality at LAUSD. How long will they be allowed to get away with this?


(Leonard Isenberg is a Los Angeles observer and a contributor to CityWatch. He was a second generation teacher at LAUSD and blogs at perdaily.com. Leonard can be reached at [email protected]) Edited for CityWatch by Linda Abrams.

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