Letter: Poor Teaching at Lebanon High

To the Editor:

This is a serious letter about educational integrity at Lebanon High School. Let me be fair by saying that the great majority of teachers are fine, and some are excellent. My son will be graduating next month, and I have had four years to closely observe teaching at his school.

Most parents are aware that the high school is currently undergoing a two-year re-accreditation process, and that this school year is the “self-study” year, in preparation for next year’s visits.

As a parent, 32nd-year high school teacher and taxpayer, however, I have witnessed some egregious breaches of good and proper teaching. I have pages of notes, empirical data and examples of such practices based on conversations with my son and students I have tutored.

I have decided not to submit this data to the accreditation committee. Even though my son was subjected to much of this very poor teaching, I cannot bring myself to submit the data simply because I’m not interested in getting individuals in trouble. My goal is solely to improve educational practices.

Looking over the past four years, my greatest regret is that I did not start a watchdog organization with other parents to monitor teaching at the high school and to report problems in a timely fashion. Though I will be “done with all of this” shortly, I strongly believe that such a group is necessary going forward. I would gladly lend a hand to any parents who want to start such a group next school year. Interested parties please email me at “Stattip@aol.com” with the subject line “Education at LHS.”

I would also strongly urge the School Board to keep a tight watch over teaching quality at our school — a valid exercise of its authority.

The purpose of this letter is only this: to improve the level of educational quality that our sons and daughters receive and deserve at LHS. This has been done, I hope, with no hurt to anyone, and that is my intention.

I would like to thank the many teachers who have done a very fine job of teaching my son, and who continue to do their jobs quite well every day.

Lou Maresca