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[Susan notes: This message is vital. Great, sad line: "Universal preschool" looks like universal test-prep. Why do people who know better accept this line that universal preschool is a good thing?]

Submitted to Seattle Times but not published

To the editor

What emerges from "Universal preschool trend has

critics," (Dec 19) is that the goal of preschool is to

help schools look better on standardized tests. To do

this, one preschool "make(s) sure that even play

periods are about learning": We are told, for

example, that children have to recognize their names

on tags before having their snack. What's next,

requiring three year olds to pass a spelling test or

rattle off multiplication tables before allowing them

to eat? If this is typical, we are in danger of

destroying childhood, pushing three and four year olds

to learn things they will acquire easily when they are


"Universal preschool" looks like universal test-prep.

Stephen Krashen

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