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WASL: A Poor Substitute for Local Adults

A clear message is coming from the state and federal departments of education and our elected officials. Buying every ounce of propaganda big business is selling about the "failures'' of our public schools, our elected leaders are saying loud and clear, "We don't trust local adults.''

The Spokesman-Review article, "ESL, special-ed students introduced to WASL,'' tells of the federal No Child Left Behind Act kicking in this year, requiring that all students be tested. However, state law has subjected virtually every fourth-, seventh- and 10th-grader in Washington to WASL since 1999.

The state superintendent's comments about working with the federal government to see that a one-size-fits-all system is not implemented become moot, when one considers that under her direction WASL has labeled and discouraged the majority of our most vulnerable students for several years.

"Of the people, by the people, for the people'' has become administrative rule in the area of education. This is wrong and will prove ineffective. Parents and local teachers are in the best position to determine the needs of children.

When parents and teachers communicate well and appropriate resources are provided, children succeed in school and in life.

Let's get back to trusting local adults.

Juanita Doyon
candidate, Washington Superintendent of Public Instruction, Spanaway, Wash.
Spanaway, WA

— Juanita Doyon
WASL a poor substitute for local adults
May 13, 2003


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