Letter to the Editor

High test scores, but at what cost?

The July 30 front-page article “Rocketship prepares for its big launch” highlighted the Rocketship charter school model, which touts its ability to improve student achievement in reading and math. But the story buried an unpleasant fact: Rocketship cheats its students out of a well-rounded education.

The reader has to reach paragraph 78 of a 95-paragraph story to learn that “Rocketship focuses exclusively on reading and math. . . .” If “regular” public schools devoted 100 percent of an eight-hour school day to teaching reading and math, their students would score well on reading and math tests, too. But at what cost?

We must build foundations for science, civics and other subjects in the early years. This enables children to develop their natural curiosity about the world around them. Focusing exclusively on two subjects, no matter how important, deprives them of this opportunity.

Stuart D. Gibson, Reston

The writer was a member of the Fairfax County School Board from 1996 to 2011.

 
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