High school students respond to LA schools chief


Don’t trust kids with technology, get us updated textbooks, and improve our schools at the bottom.

These were some reactions that high school students had to a conversation between outgoing Los Angeles Unified School District Superintendent Ramon C. Cortines and Los Angeles Times columnist Steve Lopez on Wednesday about the country’s second largest school district. Students from HS Insider as well as the Mayor’s Youth Council attended the event. Below, some of their reactions:

“Cortines says technology is effective and it works, but in my opinion, it doesn’t. Technology in the classrooms doesn’t solve problems; it’s a distraction, and creates more problems. I’ve witnessed, first-hand, people using iPads and/or laptops and playing around with them. The camera rolls are filled with silly selfies of kids goofing off. And I’m not afraid to say that I’m one of those kids. If I’m doing this, and an honor student, who’s to say that other kids won’t?”

-Luis Valente , South East High School

“Economy was a point of interest. If he wants to improve schools he [should] start with those on the lowest step.”

-Alejandra Lopez, Crenshaw High School

“One of the things that really got my attention that Cortines had said was his idea of understanding the perspectives of the students and relying on them more often.”

-Britney Portillo, Middle College High School

“Will additional money buy new up-to-date textbooks? Having to be in an AP World History with a book from 2005 is not helpful.”

-Giselle Gandara, Middle College High School

Mr. Cortines said that teachers are leaders. A teacher that was very influential in our school was wrongfully terminated for unsatisfactory administration evaluations. He would inspire students to go to college or lead them to a smart path after high school during his tenure. What can the district do about this?

-Miguel Moran, South East High School

One thing I found interesting about what Superintendent Cortines said is that the most fragile students in the LAUSD system are high school students. Not the elementary. Not the middle school students, but the high school students. I feel that this is important because as a high school student I’ve noticed changes between the years such as taking away the CAHSEE (California High School Exit Exam) and giving us more subs.

-Daniel Addison, Dorsey High School


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