|Comment Period||Ends 11/5/2008|
Dear Board of Education:
I appreciate the Board's efforts to make graduation rates a priority for Virginia high schools and am writing to ask that you take an even stronger stand.
Please increase the target for the graduation index to at least 90 points, OR adjust the graduation and completion index so that it gives schools more points for Standard and Advanced Diplomas and fewer points for all alternative diplomas and other credentials.
I am a Virginia resident, a strong supporter of our public schools, and parent of two teenagers -- one a recent high school graduate who received special education services and an Advanced Diploma, the other anticipating graduation among the top 5% of the 2011class. I feel quite strongly that we must set very high standards for high school diplomas to best prepare Virginia students to secure future employment. These days a high school diploma is hardly adequate, students who attend college have the edge, and an alternative high school diploma can seem "second rate" to employers.
Virginia’s students need to receive appropriate supports to reach their potential, and schools and the Commonwealth as a whole will benefit from incentives to provide the needed supports.
Thank you for your consideration. I hope you'll do all that you can to increase the number of students who successfully graduate ready to fulfill their greatest potential.
Kinne J. Hoffman
98 Meadowbrook Ct., Charlottesville, VA 22901