Orwell Award Announcement SusanOhanian.Org Home

[Susan notes: We need to get this message into every paper in the country. Every week.]

Published in Santa Monica Dailyl Press

To the editor

Santa Monica's Catholic schools intend to lengthen the school year because "studies show American students falling behind their counterparts around the world ("Local Catholic schools move to longer school year," Feb. 5-6, page 1)."

Studies actually show that American children from middle class families who attend well-funded schools score at the top of the world on international tests. Our overall scores are less than spectacular because the U.S. has the highest rate of child poverty of all industrialized countries, over 20 percent. The rate of child poverty in high-scoring Finland is under 4 percent.

Poverty means inadequate nutrition, inadequate health care, exposure to environmental toxins, and little access to books, all of which are associated with lower school performance. The problem is not our teachers and not the length of our school year: The problem is poverty.

Stephen Krashen

This site contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of education issues vital to a democracy. We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information click here. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.