Thursday, February 02, 2006

Dropping Out

This week the Los Angeles Times is running a fascinating series, "The Vanishing Class." Six Times reporters and two photographers spent eight months observing classes, reviewing data and interviewing students, teachers and parents to find out why more than half the Class of 2005 at Birmingham High School, a typical L.A. public school, dropped out since their freshman year. On Sunday, Mitchell Landsberg looked at the reasons different teens left school and what happened to them after they did. On Monday, Duke Helfand described what happened to students once a new graduation requirement that they pass algebra was added. Both stories are filled with vivid examples. The great Web package for this series includes a map where readers can find information about individual schools, sample questions from the algebra tests the students must take, and terrific photos by Genaro Molina. The rest of this series continues Friday and Saturday.,0,6750397.story


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