We don't have a monopoly on stupid lawsuits!

Underseer

Diabloii.Net Member
We don't have a monopoly on stupid lawsuits!

Somehow it makes me feel better knowing that such stupidity also exists elsewhere.

http://www.thestar.com/NASApp/cs/ContentServer?pagename=thestar/Layout/Article_Type1&c=Article&cid=1076241663623&call_pageid=968256289824&col=968705899037

Feb. 8, 2004. 06:03 PM
[font=Times, Times New Roman, Serif, MS Serif]Parents seek injunction to let students graduate[/font]



FROM CANADIAN PRESS

A group of Ontario parents is stepping up their fight to close the book on the high-stakes element of the province's literacy tests.



On Monday, the parents will seek a court injunction allowing students who didn't pass the Grade 10 test to graduate this year.


Jessica Shamoon, a 17-year-old student from Markham who failed the test, said she doesn't think the Liberal government is being fair in mandating a test with such high stakes.


"It frustrates me the way the government is handling this," she said. "It angers me."


Shamoon said she was looking forward to graduating from her vocational high school this spring and going on to Centennial College in Toronto to earn a degree in early childhood education.


But without a passing mark on the Grade 10 literacy test, she can't graduate from high school.


And without a high school diploma, she can't get into college.


"That basically affects everything she is going to be doing from now on," said David Shamoon, who noted that his daughter has been diagnosed with a variety of learning disabilities.


"It's a very narrow test and it is basically unfair."


Shamoon, along with other parents, have already filed a lawsuit under the Charter of Rights and Freedoms charging that the test discriminates against students like Jessica, as well as those learning English as a second language and those in applied programs.


But now they want the courts to consider forcing the government to reconsider the long-term effects of making a passing grade on the test a requirement for graduation.


More than 20 per cent of this year's Grade 12 class won't graduate because they failed the test, said David Baker, a lawyer for the parents.


"We're confident if (the government has) the time to study it objectively they will hear loud and clear that the test is discriminatory and the high-stakes element should not continue," said Baker.


Eleven affidavits from researchers, teachers, professors and parents will be filed on Monday in support of an injunction, the lawyer said.


Among them is one from John Myers, a curriculum specialist with the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education.


Myers said that to his knowledge, there is no evidence that high-stakes testing actually improves student learning.


"One of the other difficulties with high-stakes tests that I've noted over the years is that there really isn't a fallback position for those students who for one reason or another don't pass," he said.


"With all the other changes that have happened in this province over the last six or seven years, I think we do some harm to quite a number of students."


A report released in January suggested that the government's decision to eliminate Grade 13 was having dire implications on the province's dropout rate.


"About one-quarter of students in the first cohort of the reorganized program are unlikely to graduate," said the report by Alan King, a professor at Queen's University in Kingston.


"Another 5.4 per cent . . . are also at risk."


Myers said that the students in King's report are falling through the cracks — and the high-stakes nature of the literacy test just pushes them farther in.


Students who have difficulty passing the Grade 10 test can take it again or take a literacy course in Grade 12 instead.


But in Jessica's case, her school didn't provide those options.


"My plans now?" she said, "I guess I'm just going to have to find some work, maybe be a babysitter."


"I just really wish I could have gotten that diploma."
 

AgentOrange

Diabloii.Net Member
..........................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................Dumb ****'s.
Hah! I bleeped that myself! *taunt forum*
 

tarnok

Diabloii.Net Member
"That basically affects everything she is going to be doing from now on,"

You know, it's just possible that a few of her teachers mentioned that to her prior to this point. I have trouble working up sympathy in this case.
 

toader

Banned
A kid wants to be a teacher, yet cant pass a 10th grade literacy test.....when they are in 12TH GRADE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Are you kidding me? Go Canada!!

This is the first good thing Ive seen come from there since, damn, um...Celiene?...nah...dang. This is the first good thing ive seen come from Canada!!

I love it!!

The only thing I disagree with, which I think is probably just BS, is that once the test is taken, thats it, no second chance.

I think the test should be tiered by grade, and whatever grade the kid failed on....go back to that grade and start again. I know we would have some 23 year old high school students, but its better than having idiots teaching our childern and performing other graduate related jobs.
 

220683

Diabloii.Net Member
I don't think it's stupid. Some people may fail miserably at writing essays, analyzing shakespearean text while excel with in other areas. A degree for early childhood education, grade 9 is plenty to teach little children. But she does need them to learn the materials, but in this case it's a bit different. Maybe she passed all other courses, she's just bad at English.

Toader what you said is incredibly inconsiderate, there are plenty of high level jobs that only require a high school level of literacy. Especially in Canada, which so many immigrants that learned their trade in their native language. All they really need is a decent level to communicate with the clients, they don't need to waste their time repeating anything.
 

Xynrx

Diabloii.Net Member
Ah yes, the Grade 10 Literacy Test. I was in grade 11 when they implemented it, however I was part of the practice session the year prior to do a run-through before they started holding people from graduating... you know, to see if we could pass and all.

Basically, it is just a collection of readings followed by questions to see how well you can understand the material and then respond to it with some good thoughts and arguments. Essay stuff.

I kind of like it and kind of don't. It is good because it catches people who are really suffering in English and gives them ample time to rectify the problem... rather than allowing them to graduate where thier parents sue the board of education for graduating thier illiterate son (refer to the Florida case...). If you get early notification you can better fix the problem.

However, this test is directed mostly toward university-bound students, so it is much more difficult than a standard grade 10 test. This catches a lot of people off guard. This also creates a problem with people who have learning disabilities, most of which would normally go as a high as a high school diploma can no longer achieve that because of this test. Is it right?

It's timing sure is awkward. The people who study all the time pass easily, the people who sit outside the doors during lunch and smoke thier brains out don't, and the people just coasting through classes not knowing how important this time is (academically speaking) barely squeak by... or not. Regardless, this is a wakeup call to all those who aren't cramming in the books to get in gear or else they won't make it into university. The question is do all of them really want to go that far? And if they don't, is it right to prevent them from getting a high school diploma because of it?

EDIT: I forgot to mention, the test is pretty much a prep test toward grade 10 students who are aiming at entering an English program at the University of Toronto.

I don't know about anyone else, but in grade 10 I sure as hell wasn't exactly studying my butt off for every test.
 

Yavanna

Diabloii.Net Member
I think the parents should be sued for not previously making any effort to see that their kids knew what they (the parents) knew or should have known was going to be on the test. If I flunked the test that would allow me to graduate which would allow me to enter college which would allow me to maybe get off welfare and have a decent life, my parents would say, "You idiot. Now get your @$$ studying for your GED."
 

toader

Banned
220683 said:
Toader what you said is incredibly inconsiderate, there are plenty of high level jobs that only require a high school level of literacy.

Im glad that you agree with me. If you read my post clearer you will see that we feel the same on the matter. Escpecially the part about "only require a highschool education." If you cant pass the 10th grade literacy test in 12th grade, then you dont have a highschool education. So we agree that requiring a highschool education is the proper level of education required for many jobs.
 

220683

Diabloii.Net Member
It should depend on the post secondary education program they're aiming for. Surely, repeating a grade is far too extreme to be beneficial.
 

Geeno

Diabloii.Net Member
Im surprised they dont at least offer some sort of class that may not necessarily be taken in the highschool thats just for this test, or for the people who failed it rather.
 

Xynrx

Diabloii.Net Member
Geeno said:
I could sit outside "smoke my brains out" and test circles around you.
There are always exceptions to every rule. But in my experience, the people who skip class to have a smoke, hotbox in thier beat up rusty car in the parking lot, date prostitots, and spend thier evenings breaking into cars never really faired well on the Literacy Test.

And for the record, you must be one hell of an exception, because I don't know anyone who is smart enough to run circles around anyone in any test while being dumb enough to smoke a pack a day.
 
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