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Quotes: Opt-Out Advocates Work To Win Over Minority Parents

Quotes2We already have so much work to do to try to close the achievement gap that this is a distraction... It's not Latino parents, it's not African-American parents. We don't have the time to be wasting trying to opt out. We need to know exactly how the kids are doing because when they go to college, if they are not prepared it's going to cost people more money.

-- Luis Torres, director of policy and legislation for the League of United Latin American Citizens, quoted in Politico (Opt-out movement aims to lure more African-American, Latino parents)


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It's not hard to see how the parents of minorities underrepresented in higher education could feel this way, or why certain urban districts might want to continue with the predominant federal policy of the last 15 years (although I'd advise against it). But it's also easy to understand why families in suburban and exurban communities, for example, might (correctly) see this American urban, test-prep heavy model as a deterioration in the (really not very great) quality of schooling they had come to rely upon. The criticisms about a narrowing of the curriculum leading to less competent youth are apt, and the inability of many young teachers to plan for learning that isn't related to external exam prep is appalling: I saw this difference between the younger and older teachers my children had in our much praised school district (Irvine Unified), and from what I have learned about schooling around the United States (which I follow constantly), I believe this change for the worse has become common in the 21st century.

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