WASL is sucking the life out of our classrooms

Wednesday, March 22, 2006 11:23 AM PST



Concerning Wes Brosman's March 13 letter to the editor about improving our schools:

Getting rid of all athletics in our schools is not the answer.

Getting back to real education — you know, the Three R's? — is the answer!

If the WASL was about real standards, then raising the standards in reading, writing, and arithmetic would certainly show by now, wouldn't it? After all, WASL has been in place for over 10 years.

Instead, we are producing graduates who qualify for remediated math classes at the colleges.

What's up with that? Algebra used to be free in high school. Now we have to pay to learn it in college.

What has "Education Reform" done for us? Our slow decline in academic standards has led us to the WASL — Rock bottom in education excellence! WASL earned an "F" in standardized tests ratings nationally.

It used to be that a player had to have a 2.5 grade-point average to be allowed to play his or her chosen sport. Academic probation was enforced. I remember it well. You see, I was the one who had to drill the basketball team on the players' bus to keep them from flunking French class. We were No. 1 in basketball that year, and four of the five starting lineup were in my French class.



The WASL has little to do with high standards. WASL has standards of its own. It has more to do with testing how a child thinks, not what they know. What kind of a cockamamie test is that?

No, Mr. Brosman, eliminating sports is not going to boost the educational standards in our schools if it only leads to more WASL-izing of our students. WASL is sucking the life out of our classrooms by narrowing the curriculum, demoralizing the students and tying the hands of the teachers to use their talents to inspire our children to enjoy learning and flourish in knowledge.

Sports or more WASL training? I'd take the sports! At least in sports they haven't managed to redesign the scoring! A touchdown is still six points. A grand slam homer is still counted as four runs in. And at least you learn how to add correctly. That's more than what you learn from WASL-izing!

Rachel DeBellis

Parent Empowerment Network

Mothers Against WASL