As members of The Tribe, the Hall High School Alumni Association, we find your Nov. 2 editorial "About that walkout ..." ill-informed and unfair. We believe the editorial writers made unsubstantiated, unwarranted claims that Hall's teachers are not as good as Central's.
Tribe members tutor, mentor, and help Hall High in many ways. We are in the hallways and classrooms daily, where we observe teachers going above and beyond to meet the needs of their students. The halls are quiet and the students are actively learning.
The writers do not take into consideration several factors which affect student performance.
Hall High is the designated Welcome Center for students new to our country. In addition to subject matter, they are learning English as a second language. These students take the same achievement tests as those who are native speakers. The language limitations of those students inevitably impact their scores on achievement tests, which are used to grade the school's overall performance.
And yet, we see a high percentage of students obtain college funding, including the Gates and Dell scholarships--two of the top scholarships in the U.S.
Many of Hall's students come from challenging home and economic circumstances.
Although these students don't have the economic advantages we take for granted, they are eager to learn, and teachers have an innate ability to teach them. It takes a special quality to teach students with added needs, and Hall High teachers are equal to the challenge.
Dr. Mark Roberts, the Hall High principal, has instituted several innovative programs, including the Marzano High Reliability Schools™, in which the faculty have been extensively trained. They have embraced the new framework with enthusiasm, and results are clearly evident in the hallways and classrooms.
As we walk through the school we see learning taking place. During lunchtime, the Chess Club, under the guidance of its faculty sponsor, gathers in the media center to compete and coach each other.
Band members come to the band room for extra practice and to help fellow band members. Mr. Moore, the band director, is not only interested in producing good musicians through the Warrior marching band and jazz band, but also focuses on building leaders by teaching PRIDE: "Perseverance, Reliability, Integrity, Dedication in work ethic, and Excellence as the standard."
Hall offers rigorous studies that can lead to concurrent credit, so that a student may complete a semester or year of college credit before high school graduation.
Hall also offers creative after-school programs such as cooking, yoga, mountain biking, and jewelry-making.
Scott Field, proximate to Forest Heights STEM Academy, has been thoroughly remodeled and refurbished with Warrior colors to provide a first-class venue for Hall High athletic events.
These are just a few examples of the ways and means that the teachers are using to lead students to higher achievement, a joy of learning, and becoming good citizens in our community. Hall High teachers are some of the best in the district.
We feel the editorial writers unfairly portrayed them as "less than" with no understanding of their context and in ignorance of what is actually happening at Hall High.
Hall High deserves credit for excellence, and credit is certainly due to our principal and teachers.
Lynn and Jerry Senn, Peter Kumpe and Linda Brown live in Little Rock.
Editorial on 11/29/2018
Print Headline: Not 'less than'