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Monday, May 19, 2008

31 Milford students may not graduate

By Brian McCready
Milford Bureau Chief
MILFORD
— A total of 31 high school students are in danger of not graduating because they have either not passed the district’s graduation requirements or have failed to earn enough credits, school officials said.
Of 23 seniors at the Alternative Education School, four are in danger of not graduating, and of 487 seniors at Joseph A. Foran and Jonathan Law high schools, 27 are in peril of not earning a diploma.
Assistant Superintendent of Teaching and Learning Michael Cummings said students will have the opportunity to improve their performance requirements by attending extra help sessions with teachers and tutors. Also students will be able to take more assessments in order to pass the requirements.
The school system has five performance graduation requirements students must pass in the following subjects; mathematics, writing, technology, Algebra, and literacy. The class of 2008 is not required to pass the literacy requirement, a mandate that begins with the class of 2009.
Cummings said the students are all on their way to passing the Algebra graduation requirement, and Superintendent of Schools Harvey B. Polansky said the numbers will definitely change and the goal is that everyone will graduate.
Cummings said if a student does not pass the written test, he or she will be given an oral math prompt, which the student must pass.
“That’s the last shot,” Cummings said.
Cummings stressed students cannot simply skip the written tests to just receive the oral exam.
School board member Pamela Staneski, R-5, questioned when the administration begins administering the assessments. Cummings said if the students score high enough on the Connecticut Aptitude Performance Test, they can be exempt from taking the assessment.
He said if the students fail to score high enough, then the guidance counselors are informed, and they will be offered tutorial assistance.
Polansky also said letters are sent home to parents informing them if their child did not perform well on the CAPT test, and that they must pass the graduation requirements.
“Our staff is committed to providing as many opportunities as possible,” Polansky said.
But Polansky said sometimes students are slow to realize how serious the graduation requirements are. “These are our toughest challenges to get students to realize you have to complete this requirement,” Polansky said.
The math requirement states students must complete multi-step math problems, which require demonstration of basic math operations including, but not limited to fractions, decimals and percents.
The students must also explain their answers to show true comprehension.
A student passes the graduation requirement for writing by producing a clear essay that will be edited for proper English; the technology requirement states students simply must demonstrate they can use several forms of technology in specific subjects.
Students must also demonstrate they have achieved Algebra 1 skills, and the literacy requirement states students will show an overall understanding and comprehension of the written text.

3 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is very disturbing-- Seems like the students were just pushed along - and their teachers did not bother to Teach! I know there are many excellent teachers in the Milford system - but there are also bad ones - these are the ones that need to GO!
Shoving money at the system will not help these students

May 19, 2008 at 2:41 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is very disturbing-- Seems like the students were just pushed along - and their teachers did not bother to Teach! I know there are many excellent teachers in the Milford system - but there are also bad ones - these are the ones that need to GO!
Shoving money at the system will not help these students

May 19, 2008 at 2:42 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Absolutely disgusting - the BOE, Super., Administrators and teachers should be ashamed of themselves

May 28, 2008 at 3:45 PM 

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