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posted: 4/19/2013 5:00 AM

U-46 ignoring needs of failing schools

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The April 6 article concerning the U-46 school district restructuring due to its abysmal failure is "too little too late." When 10 grammar schools have failed for five years, even in a district as marginal as U-46, without any action by the U-46 board and superintendent, you have to ask yourself, what does it take to get their attention? Only when the federal government steps in does anything happen, and then the school board and superintendent must be literally dragged into doing anything.

And what do they do? Rather than following the recommendations of No Child Left Behind, they come up with two more layers of bureaucracy between the failing teachers and the failing superintendent. You may ask why. Because we can't hurt the principals and teachers unions' feelings.

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For five years the children have underperformed. As far as I can see, no one has even asked the teachers and principals what they feel they need. These kids have been moved along to the next grade totally unprepared to handle what is going to be taught to them in the next grade, and the next grade, and the next grade, and so on.

As the Daily Herald points out, these issues are fundamentally systemic. All 10 schools are bilingual, with majority Latino students. More effort needs to be placed upon the parents' learning skills as well. These children cannot learn at the proper level if they spend six hours in school to learn in two languages, and then go home and spend the balance of their time being spoken to and helped in their native language.

We cannot allow this to continue. We are creating an entire new generation of dependents incapable of providing for themselves in the 21st century. This isn't right.

Richard Francke

Bartlett

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