North High credit recovery: Colorado Dept. of Education probe reveals problems with program

Categories: Education, News

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After concerns about North High School's credit recovery program were raised in the Westword cover story "Passing on Education," Denver Public Schools asked the Colorado Department of Education to investigate allegations that students were allowed to cheat on online courses. The results of that investigation are now in -- and they're not very good.

For instance, the report notes:

Concerns that some seniors with attendance problems were allowed to enroll in and take the final tests in certain credit recovery courses very close to graduation were confirmed. While those who received credit earned the 80% mastery score required, these students should not have been granted access to the credit recovery option... The goal was to ensure that students did not see the credit recovery program as a "reward" for truancy.

What else did the investigation reveal? And what does DPS plan to do about it?

Check the Latest Word on Monday for more.

More from our Education archives: "North High: How many seniors graduated from school that used credit recovery courses?"

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Jiale Chen
Jiale Chen

Can somebody tell me what is the problem of credit recovery now that we were facing?

Robert Chase
Robert Chase

D.P.S. (like the C.D.E.) will use the passive voice -- the opposite of what my English teacher taught me -- "Concerns ... were confirmed" -- there, that's not so bad, is it?

I await the rest of this coded communication with bated breath.

Education is far more a political pursuit than an academic one.  Colorado wants to talk about graduation rates rather than incompetence rates, about teacher effectiveness rather than personal commitment or parental involvement -- the administrators involved in credit recovery are just trying to give consumers what they want.  Public education has no chance (not even One Chance) of recovery if it continues down the course it is on.

I believe in public education, and I believe in socialization and imparting skills outside of traditional academic settings, but public schools need to return to the more limited mission of educating those who want to be educated if they are to function as such.  We have other models of socialization we can draw on, e.g. military service, the Civilian Conservation Corp (CCC), and Job Corps -- these all may seem more coercive and less educational than D.P.S. but only the former is true -- we cannot sustain the fiction that all students can and should attain an academic high school equivalency and need to explore other options, both to re-establish  the integrity of public schools, and to provide alternative institutions that socialize (other than prisons).  This is just a stopgap -- we should be creating a society in which people may be poor, but are not being driven, and in which poor parents are able and encouraged to spend time with their children and to direct their education.  The public schools and teachers are being scapegoated for cultural mistakes and poor leadership of our entire society.

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