In her guest column on April 18, Rita Wakefield says she is angry about the use of SAT tests scores as a measure of high school student achievement. While the SAT is not a perfect test, it is a standardized tool for comparing achievement among students, schools, districts and even states.
The reason she states the test was unfair to Carrabec students was that it required math through Algebra 2. She goes on to say students in the school who become electricians, plumbers and welders don’t need that level of math. She is very much mistaken. Electricians use algebraic formulas to calculate current flow, amperage and resistance, among other things. Plumbers and welders use geometry to calculate complex angles and algebra to calculate distances and length.
Skilled workers in any profession need to use higher level math, reasoning and communication skills. The school is doing a disservice to those non-college bound students by thinking they don’t need certain courses because they are only going to be blue collar.
Ms. Wakefield outlined the many changes instituted under the school’s new principal, but where is the data to show those improvements made a difference in the quality and level of education of all students at the school? The data is there. The SAT scores. All students need to achieve at a high level, not just future doctors and nurses.
Cynthia Kirchherr, South Paris