El Puente High School
The primary goal of El Puente High School (EPHS) is to provide an alternative academic setting to the comprehensive high school for the purpose of remediating credit deficiencies and returning those students to FHS. Students identified as being off-track for FHS graduation are identified at the end of their 10th grade year and are transferred to El Puente High School. At EPHS, students take 6 direct instruction classes and have one period of taking online computer classes through a program called Acellus. These core courses through Acellus are A-G approved for CSU and UC systems admissions purposes and students can accelerate their credit-earning potential in order to reintegrate back at FHS for their senior year. This is very important in that graduation rates and drop-out rates are critical metrics for our LCAP and state accountability. All 11th grade students who began at EPHS at the beginning of the 2016-2017 school year successfully completed their credit recovery and returned to FHS and graduate with a FHS diploma. During the 2017-2018 school year, 3 of our seniors returned the FHS in January 2018 to complete their diplomas and graduate with their class. The remaining students will complete their El Puente High School diploma requirements. This rate of success is partly attributed to holding monthly parent/student conferences to review grades, attendance, discipline/behavior, and credits earned beyond their regular direct instruction classes. This systematic monitoring and review of El Puente students ensures a new layer of accountability for both students and staff and appears to assist students and parents in completing their academic and behavioral goals.
As a "continuation" high school, the program has improved dramatically over the years and continues to develop into an important component in FLDUSD’s multi-tiered system of support for all students. Staff at El Puente do not see students as "at-risk", but rather as "at-promise", as they have the many systems of support that are necessary for success at all levels. El Puente High School offers a high-quality alternative setting for students to either get back to the comprehensive high school or be in an academic environment that is smaller, more structured, and can access the 1:1 assistance that many students desire. The district has been very supportive in providing the resources necessary for the continued development of this program.
An application was submitted to the Accrediting Commission for Schools/Western Association of Schools and Colleges (ASC/WASC) for a spring 2018 visitation for El Puente’s Initial Accreditation. El Puente High School was notified on May 4, 2018, that accreditation status was granted by the Commission. Having that seal of accreditation on our transcripts and diplomas will be another factor that will validate the efficacy of our program and will signify that an outside, third-party evaluation process confirmed that El Puente High School meets all of the criteria for a trustworthy, high-quality institution.