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Letter to the editor: Keep Gateway equity director part-time for now

| Monday, Oct. 16, 2017, 11:00 p.m.

To the editor:

The Gateway school board recently hired an equity director. I wish to congratulate the board for its recognition that African-American students may not be achieving as well as other groups in our multi-ethnic community.

As the board knows, this has been a national concern for some time, and the issue has been extensively studied. Thoughtful people understand that we are dealing with a complex problem, and one with no easy solutions.

Education itself is a complex process involving students, parents, teachers, schools and the community — all of which contribute to student achievement in our schools. Therefore, I think it is incumbent on all participants in the process to develop clear ideas as to:

1. The nature of the problem, with clear definitions.

2. How to choose from proposed strategies that have been validated to be effective by rigorous research in order to deal with the situation.

3. The desired outcomes, and criteria against which to judge progress.

Until there is greater clarity as to the voluminous job description, expected performance criteria, and proposed evaluation of outcomes, it is premature to demand this new position be funded at a full-time level.

Louis A. Chandler

Monroeville

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