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[Susan notes:

A good point here: how can politicos and bureaucrats hold students to standards that we don't apply to the adults in charge.]

Published in Boston Globe
05/03/2004

To the editor



I READ WITH surprise and excitement the editorial "A finding for fair schools" (April 27). My enthusiasm was for the endorsement of Superior Court Judge Margot Botsford's ruling that the state is failing in its constitutional duty to provide effective public education in all

communities. My surprise emerged from the Globe's long history of support for MCAS as an equitable and helpful assessment measure to be applied

across the Commonwealth. But I wonder, how is it just to hold students accountable for a standard of education that we adults have failed to provide them? Students who have been recipients of inadequate education not only experience the losses associated with diminished learning; they are blamed for their misfortune by being denied a high school diploma because they did not meet the adequate standard known as MCAS.



Indeed, as the editors suggest, "education reform is still unfinished business." More important, however, genuine education reform must first

address the injustice the Legislature and the Department of Education are supporting by demanding from our students a standard that we have not applied to the adults in charge.



John D'Auria, Principal Wellesley Middle School, Wellesley


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