Letter to Editor: Whatever Happened To ROP?

August 20, 2014 • 259 views

At the May 21st El Monte District Board Meeting Resolution 27-13/14 was passed by a vote of 4 to 1 in favor of permanently discontinuing the following courses:
• Business Management
• Media Design
• Retail Marketing
• Special Ed Retail Marketing
• Administrative Assistant
• Stagecraft
• Child Care
• Auto CAD (Computer Aided Drafting)
This represents a total of 23 classes from 35 ROP classes. Nine (9) instructors were released permanently through this resolution.  The question is what lasting affect will the Board’s Resolution 27-13/14 have on the students of the El Monte School District’s graduation and job placement opportunities?
The El Monte School District Board of Trustees rationale resulted from a survey conducted by district’s key administrators using a survey of 250 tenth graders out of approximately 2,500 (10%) total tenth graders in the district.  These administrators convinced the Board that the 10th graders wanted classes in medical, automotive, and silk screening as a justification for eliminating the classes mentioned above! These same individuals also stated that the 10th graders believed that jobs would be available with training in medical, automotive, and silk screening.   There was no consideration for the areas of business (marketing, media design, administrative assistant, child care and Auto CAD).  The U. S. Department of Labor Statistics states that the majority of the entry level jobs, as well as, career related positions are and will continue to be in business (marketing, computer technology, and media design), medical, and criminal justice.   Students and others have concluded that as a result of these actions by the El Monte District Administrators and the Board, students will not have the benefit of those instructors experience, knowledge, and industry expertise.  For you see in order to teach ROP courses, California State requires ROP Instructors to have 5 to 10+ years experience in their related field(s).
What does this mean for the students in the El Monte Union High School District?
The El Monte School District Board had one member who had the vision and understanding to vote to retain these 23 or at least the majority of these classes at the May 21st at the El Monte District Board of Trustees Meeting.  Unfortunately one vote was not enough!
How can the El Monte Communities’ Parents and students respond?
• Call your student(s)’ school principal;
• Contact the El Monte School District Superintendent and Board Members;
• Petition for reinstatement of most if not all these courses;
• Investigate the claim that the district does not have the funds; and
• Review the long term goals as stated in LCAP (Local Control Accountability Plan)—this is a matter of public record and available at the District Office.

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