Letter to the Editor: DUSD responds to parent complaint

Dear Editor:

This Letter to the Editor is in reference to last week’s parent statement regarding Downey High School/Downey Unified and the President’s Middle College Scholars Academy awards ceremony. We wish the Downey Patriot had contacted the school to confirm these inaccurate allegations so we could provide the second part to the story.
Downey High School is very aware of all programs and extracurricular activities that students are involved in and makes attending these recognition ceremonies an enormous priority.As many are aware, that same evening was also one of Downey High’s largest student recognition events of the year, the Viking Awards.
Although Downey High is fully aware that a larger presence from both the district and school level would like to have been present at the President’s Middle College Scholars Academy awards ceremony, it is incorrect to say that there was no representation at the ceremony. One of Downey Unified’s staff that plays a major role in Support Programs, attended the ceremony that evening to support our students. 
The Viking Awards, similar to the Warren High School Golden Bear Awards, is a major event that includes DHS and Downey Unified administration as presenters, so it was unfortunate that all administration were scheduled to present awards that evening. As Mr. Jones states the President’s Middle College Scholars Academy award ceremony was organized by Cerritos College; Downey High was not asked if this date conflicted with any other prearranged events, but it is with full knowledge that the end of the year ceremonies could ideally be coordinated more thoroughly to facilitate attendance.

Downey High will work with Cerritos College and other academic partners in hopes to avoid conflicts such as this and coordinate dates for the succeeding school year.
Tom Houts
Downey High School