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'Lost Education' Finds Replies

July 19, 1991

Can there be such a dearth of material that you were forced to publish the self-serving apologia "Lessons of a Lost Education" by Lauren Lipton (July 10)?

Lipton airs her concern about California students in public schools who are just pushed through and not truly educated. This would appear to be a valid topic were it not that Lipton uses herself as an example of educational shortcomings.

Lipton's own career undermines her article's tenuous argument. She is obviously a good writer. Writing is not an involuntary response or a gift of the Muses but a learned skill, one of the attributes of an educated person.

I don't for a moment deny that educational experts have come up with some impractical teaching methods, or that some teachers in the guise of creativity are just putting in their time, or that California is becoming notorious in its lack of commitment to serve all the children in this state in terms of per-capita spending for education.

But what I most certainly am diametrically opposed to is Lipton's refusal to look to primarily her parents and then herself as the parties most responsible for any real or perceived flaws in her education.

There's no doubt in my mind that if my children's fifth grade teacher dispensed with desks in favor of individual tepees, I would be at school shortly thereafter to find out how this was to be used to further their education.

DIANE CASELLA HINES

Malibu

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