OpEd: Reseda Schools
OpEd by Alexi Chidbachian
School, a place to learn, prepare students for life, make friends, and nurture a students mind; but what really occurs inside the school system?
There are many schools that fill the city of Reseda; 33 in total, 17 public and 16 private. Local residents are able to send their children to elementary, middle, and high school without having to leave the 91335 area. Some of the best schools in Reseda are Newcastle Avenue Elementary and Reseda Senior High School. Both schools have inspirational staffs, spirited students, and superior academics; not to mention that both schools are located on Kittridge Street, in a gorgeous safe residential area. So why wouldn’t you want to attend school in Reseda? Many of Reseda High’s graduates have gone to UC Davis, Azusa Pacific, Mount St. Mary and even Harvard. Reseda High has three amazing magnet schools inside the one gigantic school. There are three different magnet schools plus the main school. Each magnet provides students with an array of different fields of study. Over the past six years their academic level has rose significantly, having an API score of 741; where a typical highly academic school has an average of 800. “Newcastle elementary has received many awards such as the honorable LACity Beautification Grant” claimed Newcastle Elementary principle Luis Rojas.
In the past few years Los Angeles Unified School District school quality has disintegrated; education has decreased, finance from LAUSD has decreased, and teacher layoffs have heavily increased. In two to three years Reseda High School will make the transition in becoming a charter school. In 2010 Grover Cleveland High School became a charter school. A charter school is a school that is funded publicly but governed by institutions outside the public school system. A charter school controls their own school budget, curriculum, and are allowed to select the group of students in the school. Their means for becoming a charter school is to a control their own money, raise academic levels, and make their own flexible decisions. By attending a charter school students will receive a better education, which will make the transition to college easier, students will also encompass a proper learning environment. LAUSD displaces and lays off numerous amounts of teacher. In the upcoming 2011 school year Newcastle Elementary will lose five great teachers due to the LAUSD cut backs. Another issue that Newcastle Elementary faced is a few years back LAUSD shut down the school because of low enrolment, this year Newcastle Elementary has 390 students.
On the other hand many local Reseda schools don’t need to be a charter school to be a great school because they already are. Newcastle Elementary has a great staff that connects one on one with students. Their student population is a closed-knit society that doesn’t require many kids to be bussed into school. Newcastle Elementary is known as one of the greatest schools in LAUSD, they have a tremendous API score of 839; SOCES having the highest score in the valley of 882. Along with them Cantara Street Elementary school is also adequate in their teachings.
According to www.GreatSchools.com, a website that ranks and describes every school in the United States, has given all Reseda public schools a ranking of 6 out of 10. They have rated Reseda High School, Grover Cleveland High School, Cantara Street Elementary, Magnolia Science Academy, and Newcastle Ave Elementary as the top-rated schools in Reseda. As Reseda High School principle Michael Summe said “Reseda High is the best kept secret in LAUSD”.