Published by Connecticut Post, December 17, 2010

Some of the arguments made in the recent opinion piece “Educational problems run deeper than achievement gap” are indeed correct. The recent PISA (Program for International Student Assessment) results reinforce the need for the entire nation, not just Connecticut, to address and reform education for students at every level.

However, the opinion piece misses the mark in that improving educational outcomes for high-performing and low-performing students are not mutually exclusive goals.

The Connecticut Commission on Educational Achievement made many suggestions to help close the gap between low-income and non-low-income students.

To remain truly competitive, particularly in comparison to populous nations such as China, we have to improve the educational system as a whole so every student is a high-performing student. This means setting a higher bar for every student and ensuring every student has the opportunity to improve, regardless of where they begin.

Steve Simmons
Connecticut Commission on Educational Achievement