Arlington Career Center | 816 S. Walter Reed St. | Arlington, VA | 22204

ACC Chronicle

ACC Chronicle

Arlington Career Center | 816 S. Walter Reed St. | Arlington, VA | 22204

ACC Chronicle

Groundbreaking
School News
Groundbreaking
Bella Weslow, Staff Reporter • June 12, 2024

On May 16th, 2024, a monumental event occurred for the students and staff of the Arlington Career Center. At 2 pm, students and teachers left...

Latinas Leading Tomorrow at ACC
Clubs & Extras
Latinas Leading Tomorrow at ACC
Lary Renderos, Guest Reporter • June 12, 2024

Let’s zoom into the bustling hive of activity that is ACC (let's throw some props to our extracurricular buffet: from frisbee to D&D, there's...

Op Ed: A Call for Accelerated Learning in APS
Op Ed
Op Ed: A Call for Accelerated Learning in APS
Joseph Sparks, Guest Reporter • June 12, 2024

Dear Arlington Public Schools, As I prepare to begin my education at Princeton University next fall, I often look back and consider the impact...

Op Ed: Let’s Expand Restorative Justice in Virginia
Op Ed
Op Ed: Let’s Expand Restorative Justice in Virginia
Zack Dabrowski, Staff Reporter • June 12, 2024

Dear Barbara A. Favola, In one month, I will have graduated from high school and be ready for the next stage of my life. When I look back...

Acme Pie Company
Community & Beyond
Acme Pie Company
Zack Dabrowski, Staff Reporter • June 12, 2024

Acme Pie Co., located barely a block from the school, is one of the only pie shops within Arlington - and it’s also the best. Walking towards...

Op Ed: A Call for Accelerated Learning in APS

Op Ed: A Call for Accelerated Learning in APS

Dear Arlington Public Schools,

As I prepare to begin my education at Princeton University next fall, I often look back and consider the impact taking accelerated math had on me. Besides making me a more competitive college applicant, it enabled me to earn an associate’s degree from Northern Virginia Community College before graduating high school, allowing me and my family to potentially save tens of thousands on college tuition, something that was extremely important for a low-income student like myself. What may have been a somewhat unremarkable achievement at the time granted me the resources to pursue the full extent of my academic and career goals. The opportunity to accelerate courses for certain Arlington students, however, is becoming increasingly scarce.

Widely regarded as one of the most affluent areas in the United States, Arlington residents don’t have to worry that their children are not receiving the best educational support available. In fact, according to the Civil Rights Data Collection by the U.S. Department of Education, the rate of Arlington students enrolling in advanced courses while in middle school is above both the state and national average for each ethnic demographic. In practice, however, there is a clear disconnect between the data and reality.

In the four years since I left middle school, Gunston’s once-full geometry classroom now serves four students; out of eleven hundred eight graders, only four are deemed capable of taking geometry. This is a clear sign of failing support, not incapable students.

Arlington Public Schools, like many affluent districts, has significant grade and graduation requirements for teachers. These policies, while effective to move kids along, more importantly serve to limit the lengths teacher can go to ensure students receive proper support: whether that be remediation or acceleration. As explained by Jessica Grose, an educator herself, in a New York Times article, “Parents were hyper-focused on grades and frequently pushed back when they weren’t happy, which led to many teachers playing it safe because they didn’t want the agitation, including possible escalation to the principal.” Instead of ensuring every child can reach the educational thresholds, these policies ensure disadvantaged students are held back from meeting their academic capabilities, which has a lasting effect. A different math class on your middle school transcript may not seem significant, but having the encouragement to strive for higher is important for all students, especially those with odds already stacked against them. In order to best serve future generations of students, Arlington Public Schools must work to solve the educational disparities faced by Gunston students.

Sincerely,

Joseph Sparks