Alternative High Schools
They serve large populations of low-income and minority students
Approximately 3.4 million children in the K-12 pipeline come from homes that earn less than the national median income. These children attend school in a variety of settings, including suburban, urban, and rural. In some cases, they qualify for free or reduced price lunch. Despite these advantages, low-income students have a harder time catching up to their more affluent peers in the classroom.
In addition to a lack of resources, many low-income students fail to meet even the most basic expectations in the classroom. These students are often overlooked in public policy discussions, and are not always encouraged to strengthen their academic performance. Despite these shortcomings, a number of students have demonstrated the audacity to do better in school than their more affluent peers. A recent study conducted by Johns Hopkins University showed that public schools that serve a higher percentage of low-income students had higher rates of chronic absenteeism and lower test scores.
The aforementioned study also showed that children from wealthy families have a better chance of attending a neighborhood-assigned public school than students from low-income families.
They offer additional ways to measure academic proficiency
Depending on your vantage point and your funding sources, an alternative high school may be a private or public school. These schools can offer a wide variety of programming options in a variety of guises. For instance, they may boast a program allowing students to pursue an actual high school diploma. However, they also have a curriculum of their own. Depending on your funding source, a school of this ilk may offer the bare minimum of curriculum requirements.
The best alternative high schools offer a well rounded educational experience for students in a variety of skill sets. The best schools also teach students to be well-rounded citizens by providing a wide variety of social and cultural experiences. These schools are also known for their alternative grading policies. For instance, they may allow students to earn an actual high school diploma or a GED certificate. These schools may also offer a well rounded education for students with behavioral and emotional issues.
They may not be as rigorous as traditional schools
What are the alternatives to high school? Compared to traditional schools, alternative high schools can be a good option for students who want to learn at their own pace. Alternative schools usually offer different curriculum options and may also cater to students who have a wide variety of needs. They may also be able to provide a diploma, which may be required by some jobs or scholarship programs. However, alternative schools may not have all the requirements that traditional high schools have, and may not be as rigorous.
Some schools have a small staff-to-student ratio. This allows for more one-on-one time with the students and their teachers. They may also offer weekend classes or distance learning programs. The curriculum and classes may vary, and they may be affiliated with private or public colleges. Some schools may have a specific focus on English language learners, or may serve students who have behavioral or emotional problems.
These alternative schools may also have a strict discipline code. The schools may also cater to students who have been expelled from a traditional school. Those students may be able to re-enroll at the school if they feel comfortable with the discipline.