There were 11 of us in the class ranging in age from 57 years old to 20 years of age. 10 of us took the test last Friday. 9 of us passed. The student who failed retook the test on Monday and passed. The rest of this post is about the 11th student.
This was, by far, the most difficult test that I have taken in years. The following post is my observation and, since this is my blog, my opinion.
When I was a child, ADD, ADHD, and dyslexia were not yet recognized as learning disabilities. I will say right now that I am blessed. I have never had any difficulty learning or testing or reading. I do know people that have. I am fairly sure that my brother probably had dyslexia. I am fairly sure that my daughter probably has dyslexia and maybe one or more of the alphabet syndromes. I am fairly sure that quite a few of the kids who were discipline problems in my class had dyslexia and/or one of the alphabet syndromes.
We were expected to learn. We were expected, to put it bluntly, to sit down, shut up and let the teacher talk. With differing degrees of difficulty, we did.
Today's schools, in the interest of inclusion, accommodation, and non-discrimination make unbelievable allowances for these kids. There was, in my class, a student who had been "helped" for the 12 years that she was in school. For 12 years, the schools had tested her separately, read her tests to her and allowed her to answer orally, changed colors and fonts and settings on computers to make it easier for her.
The job for which she was taking the class exists in the real world. The State does not allow the test to be given orally. The school actually did arrange for her to take the test separately and to change the settings on the computer. She took the test on Monday with the 10th student. He passed. She failed and blamed it partially on the fact that he was in the room with her.
She takes the test again this afternoon and I hope, for her sake, that she passes. For the sake of those whose safety will depend on her ability to do the job in a noise-filled environment, I am not so sure.