Consider parenting factor in test scores

Letter to the Editor

Posted: Monday, August 12, 2002

I am writing in response to the article "Juneau test averages rise" featured in last Monday's edition of the Juneau Empire. Why is one school testing higher than another? Could it have anything to do with the teaching methods or student-per-teacher ratio? Have either of these particular factors been analyzed? Why are the schools being graded and not our children? Why was there no mention of parent involvement anywhere in the article.

No one can say that the income level of a family or the race of a child can result in lower test scores. Someone is not doing their job, be it the parent or the teacher, the students suffer.

Most of us as working parents cannot get to the school to volunteer on a regular basis, but there are many other ways of ensuring our children's education. Talk to your children's teacher other than at conference times. E-mail them on your lunch break, ask questions and ask them often. Check your children's homework before it goes back to school to ensure that the child is grasping the subject. Grade papers once or twice a week. Then you will know if there is a problem as it begins instead of after the fact. The teachers need and would appreciate the help.

Find another way to measure our children's success other than that of their race or income. Neither one plays a role in public education. Our children have a right to a good public education. Stop comparing different ethnic groups against each other. Life is hard enough as it is.

Celeste M. DeRego


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