I’ve kvetched about this before, but now I’m going to make another stab at getting this on the agenda with a new School Board in place. Here’s my email asking to put it on the Board agenda:

-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Request for Agenda Item: Participation in Graduation Ceremonies
Date: Wed, 01 Apr 2009 13:45:32 -0700
From: Charles Cowens 
To: Audrey Miles ,  Antonio Medrano , "Harter, Bruce" 

I hope you will consider it worthwhile to add this issue as an item to
the agenda for the next meeting. The issue is whether students who
fulfill these conditions should be allowed to participate in graduation

(1) Completed all requirements for graduation except for the exit exam
(2) Registered to take the exit exam right after graduation

BACKGROUND (not a proposed precis)

1. Passing the High School Exit Exam became a requirement for districts
to grant diplomas.
2. The Ed. Code leaves it up to local districts to determine graduation
ceremonies except for Special Ed. students who must be allowed to
participate if they have a certificate of completion.
3. WCCUSD implemented a policy of complying with State law, but also
allowing students who had completed all requirements for graduation
except for the exit exam to participate in graduation ceremonies.
4. For political reasons, the Board later banned participation by such
students and even banned certificates of completion for non-special-ed
5. The Board then rescinded the ban on issuance of certificates of
completion for non-special-ed students.
6. Now, every year, families of students who are trying to pass the exam
have to deal with the uncertainty of whether their child will pass the
exam in time for the graduation ceremony. This creates a great hardship
for the families who often must buy tickets to come from great
distances. Also, it seems like every year a story comes out in the
newspaper about this kind of hardship case reflecting negatively on the

Charles Cowens