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[Susan notes: Good point made about testing leaving children behind.]

Published in New York Teachers

To the editor

After reading your article in the February issue of NYSUT United, I felt compelled to send an email. For 30 years I taught fourth, fifth and sixth grades in Albany. Math was my favorite subject to teach and I received many commendations for being a great math teacher. When the fourth grades became departmentalized, the principal put me in charge of math for all three classes.

I retired in 1994 and enjoy my family and six grandchildren. One of my grandchildren began to bring home math tests with failing grades. I was surprised to find that most of the tests consisted mostly of word problems. The word problems were sometimes tricky, and I had to read them more than once. I believed that one test ΓΆ€” eight pages long with all word problems ΓΆ€” was a reading test.

I helped my grandchild for hours, as did his mom. I also arranged for a tutor, and he arrives at school early to get extra help in math. Last week he came home and was happy to have a grade of 73. Yesterday he brought home a test with a grade of 44.

For these reasons I believe that my grandchild will have a dislike for math. The saying "No Child Left Behind" is not true. My grandchild will be one of the children left behind.

Mary Jane Kretzler

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