Hundreds of students walked out of their LAUSD high school in South Los Angeles Monday in protest over scheduling changes that they said left them without access to the proper classes.
Students waved signs and shouted from behind the gates at Jefferson High School on East 41st Street, where police tape was eventually put up around part of the campus.
Students returned to class by about 12:30 p.m., according to a tweet from Los Angeles School Police Department Chief Steven Zipperman.
New leadership at the school, along with new districtwide student information software dubbed MiSIS, was being blamed, according to a spokeswoman for the teachers union, UTLA.
“Give us our rights! Classes!” stated one sign held up by students toward news cameras.
“We need our education!” stated another.
Many students questioned why school scheduling conflicts were continuing to prevent them from being placed into the correct courses. Multiple students said they repeatedly watched movies in class since the term started Aug. 12.
“This is already the third week of school and they haven’t given us the classes we need to graduate,” said seniorJade Garcia. “All we’ve been doing is watching movies and not learning anything at all.”
Another senior said problems with MiSIS have been solved at other campuses but have continued to plague Jefferson High.
Los Angeles Unified School District has said that fewer than 1 percent of schools have been affected by glitches with MiSIS, or My Integrated Student Information System. Problems were reported at a variety of campuses soon after school began.
The problems at Jefferson High, however, were caused not by MiSIS but by “human error,” a district spokeswoman said in an email to KTLA.
“Once the problem was discovered, a team of MiSIS crew members reset the master schedule, allowing student schedules to be set up properly. Students now will have their schedules reworked, permitting them to attend classes that help prepare them for colleges and careers,” the spokeswoman said in the email.
In a statement about the walkout released earlier Monday, LAUSD’s superintendent of intensive support and innovation center said the district agreed that Jefferson High students “deserve a quality education.”
LAUSD had made “extra investments” to hire more teachers, counselors and support staff, according to the statement from Tommy Chang. A new leader at the school, Donald “Jack” Foote, is an experienced administrator, Chang said.
“It is also true that administrators made some changes in the master schedule last week, all in the best interests of students,” Chang said. “We learned that parts of the previous schedule were unacceptable.”
All Advanced Placement classes were slotted in the same period, as were all core content classes for English learners, Chang said.