Reader refuses to give Lindbergh Board of Education credit

Letters to the Editor


To the editor:

One argument I keep hearing in defense of the current Lindbergh school board and administration is that they are “working on improving our literacy instruction.” What no one is saying, is they are responsible for destroying it and now want credit as heroes for attempting to “fix” it.

We have had conclusive proof of how all kids learn to read for decades. It is widely available. Our national reading panel published a several hundred page report in April of 2000.  Our district meticulously and intentionally unraveled our literacy curriculum. They removed phonemic awareness and phonics (decoding). They removed vocabulary and grammar (language structure) and morphology. They removed handwriting instruction and cursive. Removing these essential threads destroyed the basic foundation 40 perccent of all children need. Children need direct, explicit instruction to learn to read. Our current literacy curriculum, Lucy Calkins, is banned in several states and fails to meet basic expectations for literacy instruction.

When I hear praise for the district adding in Sonday for phonics or Heggerty for phonemic awareness or mixing back in grammar or for piloting a structured literacy program, we are praising them for starting to undo the damage they intentionally created by ignoring decades of reading science.  I refuse to give them credit. This board has watched too many of our kids fail to learn to read for YEARS and now, in election year, they want to tell you the great things they doing. A true leader, admits when they are wrong, holds themselves and others accountable and fixes things… even when others are NOT watching.  This board has supported the administration who have gutted our literacy programs and now they want you to believe they are “fixing” the problem.

I will be voting for new faces on the board, including Carrie Clay and David Randleman.

Diane Dragan