For public school students in California, where you live usually determines where you can learn. To David Haglund, that’s not right.
Last month, Haglund, principal of the Riverside Virtual School, an online independent study program run by the Riverside Unified School District, introduced a statewide ballot initiative [PDF] that would give students unrestricted access to publicly funded courses – wherever they are.
The California Student Bill of Rights Initiative is “designed to eliminate control by ZIP code,” Haglund said.
Under the proposal, schools, districts and county education offices would be required to make available to all students the courses needed for admission to the state’s universities. Those courses, known as A-G requirements at the University of California and California State University, could be offered at a student’s school or district of residence or any other publicly funded school, and they could be classroom-based, online or a blended model of the two.
Nearly 27 percent of California public high schools in 2007-08 offered too few A-G courses for all students to take them, according to an analysis [PDF] by UCLA’s Institute for Democracy, Education and Access.
“We in our public school system in California say, ‘If you don’t live within so many square miles of a building, you can’t play,’ and that’s not fair,” Haglund said. “And it’s particularly unfair when the Continue reading