School Superintendent Can’t Pass Required English Test

I con­tin­ue to be more and more hap­py about homeschooling&hellip

School super­in­ten­dent fails must-pass Eng­lish test

LAWRENCE, Mass­a­chu­setts (AP) — This city’s super­in­ten­dent of schools, who recent­ly put two dozen teach­ers on unpaid leave for fail­ing a basic Eng­lish pro­fi­cien­cy test, has him­self flunked a required lit­er­a­cy test three times. 

I real­ly wish I could get a copy of that test—I’m curious.

Wil­fre­do T. Laboy called his fail­ing scores “frus­trat­ing” and “emo­tion­al.” He blamed his per­for­mance on a lack of prepa­ra­tion and con­cen­tra­tion, as well as the fact that Span­ish is his first language. 

And there are no oth­er teach­ers in that group of those who were put on unpaid leave whose first lan­guage isn’t Eng­lish? Even if Eng­lish isn’t his first lan­guage, it is the de fac­to lan­guage used in the U.S.

“It both­ers me because I’m try­ing to under­stand the con­gru­ence of what I do here every day and this stu­pid test,” Laboy told The Eagle-Tri­bune of Lawrence in a sto­ry pub­lished Sunday. 

What, com­mu­ni­ca­tion isn’t part of your job? If you can’t even fig­ure out that part, you have some seri­ous com­pre­hen­sion issues.

“What brought me down was the rules of gram­mar and punc­tu­a­tion,” Laboy said. “Eng­lish being a sec­ond lan­guage for me, I did­n’t do well in writ­ing. If you’re not an Eng­lish teacher, you don’t look at the rules on a reg­u­lar basis.” 

Hell, I’ve nev­er been an Eng­lish teacher and don’t look at any such “rules” ever, but I can bet that I would pass that test eas­i­ly. In fact, most rea­son­ably lit­er­ate peo­ple I know have an instinc­tive grasp of the basic rules of gram­mar and punc­tu­a­tion of what­ev­er lan­guage they use most often.

State Edu­ca­tion Com­mis­sion­er David P. Driscoll said he is aware of Laboy’s trou­bles with the test, but would not say how many chances Laboy would be giv­en to pass or what the con­se­quences of anoth­er fail­ure could be. 

Why isn’t this guy on unpaid leave already? How is he more impor­tant than the teachers?

He said Laboy was doing an excel­lent job lead­ing the dis­trict, and is get­ting more time to pre­pare for the test. But he added, “He’s going to have to pass. …The sit­u­a­tion will only get seri­ous if he goes much longer with­out passing.” 

And how many chances were the teach­ers giv­en? The dis­trict in ques­tion has abysmal stu­dent test scores and is doing poor­ly in just about every way one can mea­sure qual­i­ty in schools.

Since 1998, all Mass­a­chu­setts edu­ca­tors — from teach­ers to super­in­ten­dents — have had to pass the Com­mu­ni­ca­tions and Lit­er­a­cy Skills Test, which mea­sures basic read­ing and writ­ing skills, includ­ing vocab­u­lary, punc­tu­a­tion, gram­mar, spelling and capitalization. 

Laboy, who receives a 3 per­cent pay hike this month that will raise his salary to $156,560, recent­ly put 24 teach­ers on unpaid admin­is­tra­tive leave because they failed a basic Eng­lish test. 

Right—he gets more mon­ey, despite the fact that he’s not func­tion­al­ly lit­er­ate. That makes sense how?

Cur­rent Mood: 😡annoyed
Cyn is a proud Mommy & Mémé, professional geek, avid reader, fledgling coder, enthusiastic gamer (TTRPGs), occasional singer, and devoted stitcher.
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