The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

Top News

February 14, 2013

OLSON: Lincoln High School changes are meant to strengthen students’ success

CLINTON — There has been an outpouring of concern and anxiety with the district's impending decision on relocating our alternative education program from its present location on the Lincoln campus to a building that sits on the outside property of Clinton High School.

Lincoln campus began back in the late 1980s through the present day and has served our community and district for students who struggled with a traditional school setting.

Many of the students who were enrolled at this off-site high school campus may have had significant issues in their personal lives or felt more comfortable in a smaller setting.

It has not been unusual for a student who has been attending Lincoln to be financially independent, living on his/her own, working a full-time job, and also trying to attend school.  

Our current alternative program was developed to allow students to progress at the speed they determined by finishing a set of independent study materials based on the high school curricula in order to meet the standards for graduation. The staff who have worked in this building have been highly skilled in forming positive empathetic relationships which empower young people with the determination and interpersonal skills to succeed and overcome obstacles.

The issue for the district is not found in the goals of the program or the financial one to maintain it; the issue lies in the number of students who are attending and not obtaining the number of credits for graduation.

Historically, based on our enrollment records, only one in three students who enter our alternative program, will graduate from high school. This is not good enough for the students in our community.

National statistics regarding lifetime wages and educational attainment are really quite alarming for people who have attained less than a high school diploma. Statistics state that non-graduates will earn hundreds of thousands less than those with a high school diploma.

For our district, this decision comes down to modifying this program where the student determines the course of study that will help he or she succeed and graduate instead of creating a one-size fits all program and hoping that it will work for all students.

The one thing that I am certain of is that we can and must do better in seeing more students succeed and graduate from Clinton High School.

Deb Olson is the superintendent of schools with the Clinton School District.

1
Text Only
Top News
  • Celebrity quack moms are a terrible influence on everyday parents

    On April 15, the actress Alicia Silverstone released a book called "The Kind Mama: A Simple Guide to Supercharged Fertility, a Radiant Pregnancy, a Sweeter Birth, and a Healthier, More Beautiful Beginning." It's chock-full of attachment parenting lessons and dangerous misinformation.

    April 24, 2014

  • Lindley, Tom.jpg What will happen in NFL draft? No one really knows

    Despite the hours spent interviewing coaches, watching film and developing well-reasoned mock draft lists, the truth about the 2014 NFL draft remains a mystery, well-guarded by teams that have nothing to gain by publicly sharing their innermost thoughts.

    April 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • American sunscreens need an upgrade

    The last time a new sunscreen ingredient came on the U.S. market, the Y2K bug was threatening to destroy our way of life. Intel had just introduced the Pentium III processor, featuring an amazing 500 MHz of computing power.

    April 24, 2014

  • 20140424-AMX-COFFEE24.jpg Coffee growers' prayers for rain met with threat of deluge

    Brazil's drought made arabica coffee this year's best-performing commodity. Now, farmers are facing a downpour that is once more threatening crops.

    April 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Iowa man accused of torturing, killing bald eagle

    An Iowa man has been charged with torturing and killing a bald eagle.

    A federal grand jury in Des Moines returned an indictment Wednesday against Jason John Thomas.

    April 24, 2014

  • Affirmative action ruling challenges colleges seeking diversity

    The U.S. Supreme Court's support of Michigan's ban on race-based affirmative action in university admissions may spur colleges to find new ways to achieve diversity without using racial preferences.

    April 24, 2014

  • 10 Things to Know for Today

    Your daily look at late-breaking news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about today:

    April 24, 2014

  • 4-23-14 Northey Burkens committed to ag education CLINTON -- As the Iowa Secretary of Agriculture, Bill Northey said his department doesn't hand out the Good Farm Neighbor Award arbitrarily. Only 10 acknowledgements are bestowed each year. On Wednesday, the honor went to a worthy family in Clinton C

    April 24, 2014 2 Photos

  • World Book Night 1 Clinton Public Library hosts largest World Book Night event in the country

    CLINTON -- With more than 21 titles and 800 copies to give away, what reader wouldn't adore an event like World Book Night? Organizers at the Clinton Public Library wondered the same Wednesday, and were pleased with turnout for the third annual event

    April 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Amid Russian warning, Ukraine's in a security bind

    Ukraine's highly publicized goal to recapture police stations and government buildings seized by pro-Russia forces in the east produced little action on the ground Wednesday but ignited foreboding words from Moscow.

    Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov warned that Russia would mount a firm response if its citizens or interests come under attack in Ukraine. Although he did not specifically say Russia would launch a military attack, his comments bolstered wide concern that Russia could use any violence in eastern Ukraine as a pretext for sending in troops.

    April 23, 2014

AP Video