To the Editor:
This is in response to the letter printed Monday, June 23, 2008 ("Reader points out errors in information").
While I realize that many students are still not getting a minimum education, you tread on shaky ground economically when you state that you are willing to forfeit the advanced courses offered any more than they have been already (and though they are still in the course description book, multiple sections have been reduced, thus in reality making them unavailable to more and more students each year).
A society's economy as well as the student body at a school is based on a bell curve with a smaller number of people at both ends and the bulk of them in the middle where the curve peaks. If you constantly remove people from the higher end of the bell curve, the results will be that the general academic and economic status of the population will be lowered.
A society needs the people at the higher end to support the needs of those at the lower end. If we constantly lower the ceiling, soon the entire society is being lowered. This, I argue, is what has happened since the U.S. started to feel too comfortable with their position in the world at the end of the cold war and the result has been our slow decline ever since.
Let us hope that it is not too late to recover as a nation, but at least give individuals the opportunity for the greatest success that they can achieve individually.
While we agree that curriculum is what is important to our students, I vehemently disagree that needs of our top students can be ignored. We need to be training our future scientists as well as our blue collar workers in order for our society to continue to thrive.
What to you may seem to be a frivolous class like French IV, may be what a student needs who wants to be in our government's diplomatic corps. Our country's foreign relations 10 years down the road may be affected by the availability of that course in high school. May in fact be the deciding factor of her chosen career path!
I suggest you read "Atlas Shrugged," by Ayn Rand, philosopher. Though a work of fiction, it clearly demonstrates what can happen to a society when the determination that the minimum is good enough for all is made and forbids those with more personal drive to advance to their full potential.