Carson High spares 170 seniors from showing up late to graduation

You’d think that earning a diploma from a high school that has only a 58% graduation rate* would be reason enough to celebrate, but apparently “the man” at Carson High thinks differently.

Paul Clinton at the Daily Breeze reports that 170 of its 665 eligible seniors won’t be allowed to participate in graduation ceremonies on Thursday because they were excessively tardy over the school year.

The Los Angeles Unified school has declared 170 of its 665 seniors ineligible because they were absent more than 60 hours of instructional time during the school year or tardy at least 15 times.

Narbonne High School in Harbor City, which has an even lower graduation rate of 42.6%, is keeping 250 of its 690 diploma worthy seniors from ceremonies.

Hey, teachers! Leave those kids alone.

*source: LA Times: LAUSD Graduation Tracker.

8 Replies to “Carson High spares 170 seniors from showing up late to graduation”

  1. You do realize that a consequence like this MIGHT help to improve the grad rate in future years (even if just a little)?

  2. Interesting statistics. Draconian response in an effort to curb tardiness. Wonder if the kids knew this was a consequence when they were counseled on excessive tardiness or was this some sort of last minute brain fart by someone in LAUSD in the last week.
    My question is if they knew in advance, what the hell were Natalie Morales’ parents thinking in letting her skip school to babysit?

  3. Six Hundred Sixty FIVE eligible seniors? They couldn’t drum up one more breathing body for the awesomest 666 Graduating Class ever???

    You let me down, Carson High.

  4. I graduated from Narbonne High in 1985, eighth in my class of over 800. I spoke at the Baccalaureate and was to have a backup speech ready in case the Valedictorian (my best friend) or Salutatorian could not speak.

    However, I was not allowed to attend graduation since we set off firecrackers as a senior prank. The school officials decided to teach me a lesson.

    Of course, this backfired and my disdain for people misusing their authority only grew.

    Whatever help someone thinks this may be doing is non-existent. If you have not taught an 18 year old to behave properly by high school graduation, you are certainly not going to ‘teach’ them anything by preventing them from attending graduation.

    It is a worthless effort that hurts everyone involved.

  5. I am guessing that David Markland has no friends who are public school teachers. A few years ago, I may have concurred with him and the other commenters in saying that the consequences were “draconian” or that the students were not being taught any valuable lesson. That was before I stepped into the classroom as a teacher for LAUSD.

    The behavior of the students is outrageous and often downright illegal, but the range of consequences that adults can impose on students is limited because ineffective parents are so quick to play the litigation card. Often, parental support is nonexistent. The worst behaved students’ parents have ALL told me that they have no control over their own children.

    I often feel that teachers are being punished for parents’ mistakes. The abuse that we take from children would blow your mind.

  6. I teach at the very last school on that list and my students are never tardy even though it is a huge problem at my school. I don’t allow students into my class even one second past the bell if they do not have an pass from another teacher or administrator. (I’ve had some kids try to forge a tardy pass. I figure, if they’re willing to make that effort, they’re ready to learn so I’ll accept the “pass”.)

    When I used to allow students to come in tardy, it disrupted the entire flow of my lesson – a disservice to the students who managed to come on time. The tardy student is often lost because s/he missed the first part of the lesson and sometimes resorts to distracting others.

    It takes only one time being denied from class for my students to learn that I’m serious about my tardy policy. I make clear that I value their time by designing lessons that challenge them in a way that respects their intellects and backgrounds. I expect that they value my time and their own time as well. Once this is established, students do not resent my tardy policy. The real problem is that my school lacks a tardy policy. Other teachers will allow students in at any time during the period so the lack of consistency is unfair for students.

    Still, 60 hours of instructional time equals approximately 10 days/2 school weeks of class. Being consistently tardy is different from pulling a school prank. In my experiences, chronically tardy students only come to class when they have nothing better to do. I’d rather teach students to want to learn and, believe me, I have plenty of them!

  7. While Ms. K’s tardy policy sounds great, it is all kinds of illegal. By law, students have to be in the classroom “learning.” The tardy policy at my school is that any student more than 5 minutes late must have a written pass, but anyone arriving before that must be allowed into the room. You can’t deny anyone access to your curriculum.

    Where are students who are locked out sent? The dean and the administrators are too busy with the real problem kids–they don’t have time for tardy slackers. Additionally, teachers are legally responsible for all students inside and outside their classrooms so you can’t just allow them to loiter in the hallway, either.

  8. The first year I moved to L.A. from the east coast, I was shocked to hear a parent getting all bent out of shape that her daughter’s school punished her for being 5 minutes late. I remember thinking that in this crazy world where no one is ever on time or even cares about being on time, it was a minor miracle that school, at least, still teaches punctuality.

    That said, keeping kids from attending GRADUATION doesn’t really make sense to me. Surely they were already punished when they were tardy? And surely noone should be kept from graduation, an important ceremony that speaks to the worth of graduation and installs pride in the accomplishment?

    It makes me sad that students would be kept from graduation for any reason.

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