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Art Of East L.a.

May 01, 1988

Regarding those "full auto shops" that disgusted the talented and creative ("We were sick of high schools with full auto shops but tiny libraries, of educational systems designed to make children feel pointless," said Harry Gamboa): Any bread-and-butter skill learned in high school can be a means to higher education. (I herewith kiss my typewriter.) And though girls were effectively kept out of the shops, any self-assured guy could enter the female-dominated typing classes--and some did. Fortunately, the computer was perceived gender-neutral, no doubt a factor in the program that made Garfield a computer-education Magnet school, to which students from a large area are bused. And those auto shops? Still filling a need in these high-immigration years by teaching a skill not dependent on high language proficiency (though a shop student did teach me how to pronounce solder ).

ELIZABETH BARNHART

Hollywood

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