Every School Should Send Out A Letter Like This

Posted on October 11, 2013


Carol Hampton Rasco (Since 2001, President and CEO of Reading is Fundamental) sent this post around on Facebook and is encouraging everyone to share.  I think it’s well worth a look… and if you are a school teacher, principal, or administrator, please consider… strongly consider… initiating something like this as a tradition in your own school.  In an era of faceless, rigid standardized testing, this is more important than ever.

A friend sent this to me today and I have her permission to share it, but I am erasing names and the state. She will let this principal and the PTO know of the support anyone gives to it.

My friend said:
My daughter’s new elementary school principal sent this to all the students as they received their state standardized testing scores this week:

“We are concerned that these tests do not always assess all of what it is that makes each of you special and unique. The people who create these tests and score them do not know each of you– the way your teachers do, the way I hope to, and certainly not the way your families do. They do not know that many of you speak two languages. They do not know that you can play a musical instrument or that you can dance or paint a picture. They do not know that your friends count on you to be there for them or that your laughter can brighten the dreariest day. They do not know that you write poetry or songs, play or participate in sports, wonder about the future, or that sometimes you take care of your little brother or sister after school. They do not know that you have traveled to a really neat place or that you know how to tell a great story or that you really love spending time with special family members and friends. They do not know that you can be trustworthy, kind or thoughtful, and that you try, every day, to be your very best… the scores you get will tell you something, but they will not tell you everything. There are many ways of being smart.”

My friend reported her daughter who did well on the test shrugged about her scores, but read the letter over and over and held it close to her heart announcing, “I really love this.”

I love it as well.