Unfortunately, these politicians, just like the ones in Washington, choose to remain blind to the inequities that their sinking and stinking system is built on. But until "science" comes up with a new way to perpetuate the discrimination and blame that by now have entered into the political germ plasm, we must continue to depend upon these crude measurements that, not so long ago, replaced cranial size comparisons as the prevailing method of scientific social sorting:
Many Utahns find it disturbing that 26 percent of this year's graduating seniors didn't pass the state's high school exit exam.
How hard is the test? Who are these failing students? Are policies regarding the exam too lenient?
Lawmakers are pondering that last question before convening for the 2008 Legislature. Some are dismayed students can receive a diploma without passing the test. Others have sought exemptions for students with disabilities or limited English.
"Every year we have a bill proposed that talks about giving the state Board [of Education] some latitude" but "it's always very broad and never gets out of committee," said Rep. Greg Hughes, R-Draper, House chairman of the Education Interim Committee.
A presentation during last week's Education Interim Committee meeting summarized strategies adopted in other states. Lawmakers want to accommodate mental or linguistic handicaps without creating loopholes for everyone else. In the meantime, state and district officials are working to get a better sense of who's not passing and why.