Wakefield High School at risk of losing state accreditation
An Arlington high school is at risk of losing its state accreditation. Wakefield High is the only Arlington county public school that failed to receive full status, falling below a state standard.
If it doesn't meet the benchmark within three years, the school would lose accreditation and require extensive re-structuring.
Virginia factored graduation and completion index into its accreditation rating for the first time this year, allotting credits for students with a diploma. The state requires an index score of 85. With 75 dropouts, Wakefield failed to meet the state standard, scoring at 77.
Principal Chris Willmore says that number derived by the state doesn't entirely reflect the achievements of the student body.
“There are three comprehensive high schools and all students in the attendance zones of those three comprehensive high schools are attributed to the high school, whether or not the student attend there. They may attend one of the alternative programs or continuation programs,” Willmore said.
He says about half of the dropouts attributed to Wakefield haven't even attended the school, and the school's graduation rate is above the state benchmark.
Parents and students received notice last week about Wakefield's rating. Senior Ben Dannemiller believes that getting back on track requires commitment from teachers and students.
“A student can only do so much in the class if the teacher doesn't care, and same way for a teacher, if the class doesn't care,” he said.
Kyleigh Blain says student attendance is always a challenge toward the last quarter.
“In the fourth quarter they just want to leave, they just want to leave school because it's almost the end of the school year,” Blain said.
Willmore says the school will keep a close watch on student attendance, create a dialogue with parents, and offer guidance to seniors behind on credits.
RecommendedRecent Facebook Activity
Best of TBD In case you missed it
Click through to climb to the apex of adorable animals.
TBD Blogs What you need to read
The Market Report
@TBD On Foot
Only On 7
The Washington Capitals are gearing up for another run at their first Stanley Cup title. Here are 10 things to watch in 2011-12.