SitNews - Stories in the News - Ketchikan, Alaska

Viewpoints: Letters / Opinions

"Beyond time to get worried"

By A. M. Johnson


April 30, 2018
Monday PM

Editor Sitnews

The opinion piece from the blog site 'Anchorage Daily Planet' is timely in light of current negotiations between the property tax payers and the National Education Association. Conclusions drawn are left to the reader. With 50 percent of K-3d grade struggling or outright failing it is not hard to understand the dismal statewide results.

Children learn to read from kindergarten through the third grade. From the forth grade on if successfully taught, read to learn.

If one can not read at grade level exiting the third grade and ineffective intervention has not worked or if correct interventions are not applied failure will follow. Ability to read carries over to the ability to comprehend and without comprehension failing and struggling children will loose interest in school and become class disrupters affecting the level of what learning maybe taking place.

At one point during one of my terms on the Ketchikan school board, a visit by the then commissioner of state corrections ventured that she spent then, a large segment of her state's correction budget on primary reading/math instruction. She placed the responsibility, rightly so in my opinion, on the failure of elementary level efforts or lack there of. She pointed out the duplicate cost to the state. It obviously continues as the article provides.

While the negotiations deal with adult interest, too often children are used as straw man props to gain public sympathy.

Results of the National, State and local testing collectively reflected begs the question if more education funds will change just doing the same and expecting no different results.

It is a conundrum for sure.

Ketchikan has the world's best educators
Ketchikan has the vast experience of educational administrators
Ketchikan has excellent facilities
Ketchikan has the greatest parents
Conclusion: Ketchikan needs smarter kids

Tons of funding while allowing successful students to achieve (those 50 percent who have family guidance and expectations) and all hell breaks loose when attention to the struggling and failing Ian is attempted. This is known from personal experience.

Too old to fight the fight. Left to champion the willingness of authors and information as submitted.

The Alaska Policy Forum’s piece published on the Anchorage Daily Planet is an eye-opening must-read.

Beyond time to get worried


A M Johnson
Ketchikan, Alaska

About: Past Borough assembly member
(Proud) Re-called school board member


Editor's Note:

The text of this letter was NOT edited by the SitNews Editor.


Received April 24, 2018 - Published April 30, 2018

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