Requirements have to be met, period

I was disappointed to see that two of your front-page stories on Friday were on the subject of high school students not graduating. The tone of both stories seemed to be sympathetic to the students, and implied that the schools should have allowed these students to participate in graduation exercises.

With the increasing call for higher standards for graduation, using front-page space to sympathize with students who did not meet the requirements for graduation was an odd choice. Should we let anyone who feels left out graduate? Why have any standards at all?

If Collin Murphy had time for a part time job and time to play baseball, he could have made time for his schoolwork if graduating with his class was important enough to him. He should probably be apologizing to his grandmother instead of looking for public sympathy.

If Mark Klinefelter did not pass the reading portion of the WASL, he needs to continue to work on his reading skills until he has reached the standard required by our state school system. I have great admiration for anyone learning a foreign language, but if students who don’t speak English as their first language are held to a lower standard, we are doing them a disservice. What about students who struggle with dyslexia or other learning disabilities? Should the requirements be lowered for them, or do they just have to work harder than other students do? Life may not be fair, but making the requirements for graduation apply to everyone equally is.

Instead of celebrating excellence and accomplishment, The Herald seems to be making excuses for substandard performance. I hope that in the future the Herald will use the front page for more important news.

Amy Knutson


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