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[Susan notes: The David Brooks piece ran in The New York Times and was distributed to newspapers throughout the country.]

Published in The Oregonian

To the editor

When David Brooks accuses today's schools of mistreating disengaged or

rebellious boys, he recognizes only part of the problem. Across genders,

ethnicities, and socio-economic levels, only one type of student satisfies

the school culture: the academic conformist.

Since the yearly testing of No Child Left Behind failed to transform all

students into this ideal, most states have adopted the Common Core State

Standards that focus on a day by day, year by year regimentation of

behavior. To meet the demands of the CCSS and be deemed ready for college

or a career, students must ­among other thingsâ read mostly non-fiction,

analyze complex texts, listen while the teacher reads aloud what they cannot

read on their own, identify Greek or Latin affixes or roots, and do it all

without question or complaint.

Are all our students ready and willing to become this new ideal, and why on

earth should they be?

Joanne Yatvin

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