Letters to the Editor

Not about students

Luciana Reyes' story is heartbreaking (Dec. 8) and, unfortunately, is the logical end of an education system that has prioritized test scores over all else. We are creating an entire sub-section of students who work hard, who have big dreams, who do well in school, but will be cast away by an uncaring system spouting glib, simplistic platitudes about high standards and accountability.

Ms. Reyes and the 38,000 students who did not graduate after last year's debacle are the human costs of a system that is morally and intellectually bankrupt.

The exit exam and its ugly cousin, the California Standards Test, dictate what happens in the lives of our students. Districts hire consultants, purchase programs and make decisions not because they are good for learning, not because they contribute to students becoming productive members of a just society, but because they will purportedly raise test scores.

This test-crazed environment doesn't care about students and it doesn't care about their intellectual growth -- it cares for numbers only. High numbers do not necessarily mean deep learning.

Look to Susan Ohanian's Web site, The Harvard Civil Rights Project, and Fair Test for information on our depraved system. Luciana Reyes needs you!

Jason Roche