The Los Angeles Unified School District board unanimously approved a $1.1 million plan Tuesday aimed at resolving class-scheduling issues that left some students at Jefferson High School unable to attend courses they need for graduation and some being sent home or being assigned to classes they had already passed.
"I now have two home periods where I'm sent home doing nothing and during that time I could be taking other AP classes that could make me more competitive when I apply to college,” said student Jason Magana.
The scheduling issues led to a judge issuing an order requiring state education officials to intervene in the situation and work with the district to develop an immediate resolution.
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Under a court order, the LAUSD has until Nov. 3 to implement the plan.
The district's staff, working with officials from the state Department of Education, developed a plan that will extend the school day at Jefferson High School for 30 minutes for 124 days beginning Monday to help affected students make up for lost learning time. The proposed resolution also calls for the addition of classes and funding for support services, such as student transportation.
The district also plans to offer an “office hours” program to provide additional support for students who were assigned to classes late and need to catch up with other students.
The plan comes after a class action lawsuit that was filed on behalf of students at several California schools, alleging the state is failing to provide an adequate education for students in low income areas.
“More students drop out of Jefferson than graduate eligible to attend a California state college or university. This would not happen in Beverly Hills or Santa Monica,” said Public Counsel attorney Kathryn Eidmann.
Last week, Alameda Superior Court Judge George Hernandez Jr. issued a temporary restraining order requiring the state to step in and help resolve the problem.
According to the district, officials identified 49 Jefferson High students enrolled in two or more periods of home or “service'' courses. Of those students, 41 are still on track for graduation, but the district plans to work with the eight others who need courses to graduate.
They also identified 204 juniors and seniors who were retaking a course they had already passed, but many of them were re-taking courses such as computers, design, physical education or band that were designed to be taken multiple times.