Friday, July 18, 2003

Mom blogs! (Sort of.)

Well, my mother (Susan in "Our Cast") finally had something she wanted to blog about but was bewildered by Blogger (she's an email whiz, though)... So, on Mom's behalf:

From opinionjournal.com's Best of the Web:

Great Moments in Public Education
Daniel Lipsman, a retired schoolteacher in New York City, is in trouble with the law--for sending his daughter to school. The Daily News reports 15-year-old Angela "has earned her associate's degree and is on her way to a bachelor's--but she can't have the sheepskins because she never got a high school diploma."

It gets worse: "The gifted girl's proud dad is being investigated by child protective services for alleged educational neglect--for letting his daughter go to college." A judge in Albany ruled that "Angela was not legally free to skip high school" and upheld a state Education Department diktat that imprisons children in high school until they turn 16 and doesn't allow them to get an equivalency diploma until age 17. Angela's father says he'll "go to prison before my daughter goes to a city high school."

Why this caught my eye was that I began my high school career at Jamaica High School, a NYC high school, but I left after my junior year. If I had continued as a student at Jamaica High School, I would have been [apparently illegally] graduated at age 15 (or 15-1/2 at the latest). I had skipped the 4th grade and was in the 2 year SP (7th, 8th and 9th grades in 2 years). I started 10th grade at 12-1/2 (usual age for a high school sophomore is 15). My mother was pushing me to graduate midway through my senior year, just following what would have been my 15th birthday (in December), and then had plans for me to do college in 3 years and go on to medical school. (My thought at the time, which was the late 50's - "Who would go to a 22 year old lady doctor?" Remember, this was pre-Doogie Howser.) Anyway, after a year or so being a social outcast at Jamaica on account of my age, I was totally miserable, so, after completing my junior year at Jamaica, I went to a private boarding school for two years, essentially repeating 11th grade and then finishing 12th grade, so that I didn't end up starting college until I had reached the ripe old age of 16-1/2.

Well - we know what Shakespeare would have said: "If this, Sir, be the law, Sir, then the law, Sir, is an ass!"

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