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Valley Perspective

Test Scores

October 29, 2000

Re "Low-Scoring Valley Schools to Get State Help," Oct. 17.

Low average test scores in no way reflect a school's need for funding. The question is, should increased funding be given only to schools that are not achieving academically? Is simply giving money away the solution to improving test scores, or does it require broader changes in the organization of a school's curriculum?

Every student, regardless of his or her performance on a schoolwide test, should have equal access to the resources within the public school system. Shouldn't funding for schools be based on an inadequacy of general resources proportional to the number of students rather than an inadequacy in a measure of student achievement?

The state should evaluate the condition and curriculum of all public schools before deciding where the money goes based on standardized testing alone.

GREG FRANKEL

West Hills

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Re "Valley Test Scores Make the Grade," Oct. 5. It is encouraging to read about the improved test scores at San Fernando Valley schools.

Unfortunately, as a parent who has a child starting in the school system this year, the increase in scores at schools in my area from the low 500s to the mid- to upper 500s isn't enough for my wife and I to rejoice or take our son out of private school.

I'm sure our children will be long graduated by the time the Los Angeles Unified School District has improved to acceptable levels. Our best bet now is to keep working long hours at our jobs to continue paying for the private school and to pray for the voucher initiative to pass.

MARK KEHLENBECK

Canoga Park

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