LAUSD Superintendent Alberto Carvalho outlines goals for district's next 4 years, vows quick change

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BySid Garcia via KABC logo
Tuesday, August 9, 2022
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L.A. Unified Superintendent Alberto Carvalho outlined goals he wants the school district to reach in the next four years, such as improving the current high school graduation rate.

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Los Angeles Unified Superintendent Alberto Carvalho on Monday outlined goals he wants the school district to reach in the next four years.

In a speech resembling a state of the union address, he focused on improving the current high school graduation rate.

"Our graduation rate for the 2021-2022 school year was over 85%," Carvalho said in his first back-to-school address at the Microsoft Theater. "That means more than eight out of 10 students completed their requirements for graduation and are now headed for college or into their careers."

Carvalho also warned of a "much different, potentially darker future" in the district's long-term financial outlook.

"We must counterbalance the negative forces and pressures confronting Los Angeles Unified," Carvalho said. "The only way to do that is by accelerating change, by implementing change rapidly."

Carvalho said that while many view operation changes at LAUSD as "necessarily protracted,'' he vowed to be quick while also remaining deliberate and intentional.

"Because our students cannot wait," Carvalho said. "Our society cannot wait. The world cannot wait."

Carvalho announced certain benchmarks through pillars outlined in the district's 2022-26 strategic plan that include increasing the graduation rate to 93%, increasing the percentage of students who feel safe at school to 82% and decreasing the percentage of chronically absent students to 91% or less.

The five pillars are: academic excellence, joy and wellness, engagement and collaboration, operational effectiveness and investing in staff.

The plan also sets out to increase the annual four-year cohort new student enrollment to at least 16%, and reach 65% in the number of students enrolled in thematic and choice learning options.

"I know this is going to be a difficult year," Carvalho said. "It has been several difficult years. But it will be especially challenging to right the course of an altered future while confronting the obstacles before us. I know you will correct the trajectory and then some."

Carvalho also discussed the need for the district to invest in its staff, an issue that will continue to loom as labor talks continue with the powerful United Teachers Los Angeles teachers union, which is seeking a 20% salary boost over two years.

School starts next Monday.

Carvalho hopes the hundreds of thousands of students attending LAUSD schools are excited about their futures.

City News Service contributed to this report.