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January 30, 2013 at 4:00 PM

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Bill introduced in state Senate to give public schools letter grades

Similar bills have not shown improvement in schools

This bill is a copy of Chapter 1 of the American Legislative Exchange Council’s A+ Literacy Act, which in turn is modeled on Florida’s Statute 1008.34 [“New bill in Olympia would give letter grade to schools, reward ‘A’ earners,”, Jan. 28].

Despite the stated intention of reducing the opportunity gap and improving high school graduation rates, Sen. Litzow is jumping on a model that not only did not improve those statistics in Florida, but in fact awarded 15 of 31 “F” grades to charter schools — which explains why charter schools were originally exempted from this bill.

I would encourageLitzow and his colleagues on the education committee to abandon the tactic of employing unproven ideology-driven strategies and instead look at research-driven tactics, such as Johns Hopkins University’s AVID program, which have been proved to produce improvements in the opportunity gap and graduation statistics.

--Mary Griffin, Seattle

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