School Choice, `Bright Models'

The editorial "More Choices Than `Choice'," Oct. 30, on the Carnegie Foundation report and its reservations on school choice is excellent.

Having worked with the local Southern Berkshire Regional District for years, I take exception to the last paragraph. Carnegie has not ignored the "choice dynamic" nor should choice take credit for creating "bright models." Surely, we would not give credit to a war dynamic for creating bright models for peace.

Long before the simplistic "parental choice" raised its head, Carnegie grant schools had been created in Massachusetts. These schools advocated school-based management and encouraged bright new ideas to improve schools. The belief that schools weren't improving prior to choice is as much a myth as the claims for choice benefits.

It is presumptuous to fault Carnegie. It has been at the forefront of improving schools for years and has ignored nothing in its voluminous research. Leonard H. Lempert, North Egremont, Mass. Director, Statistical Indicator Associates Labeling blue-collar voters

Regarding the front-page article "Ethnic, Blue-Collar Vote Could Decide US Election," Oct. 27: I object to the labeling of Catholics as "blue-collar voters." This line of thinking should have been put to rest with the Kennedy administration.

Yes, Kennedy was Catholic and very noticeably part of an ethnic group; but isn't it a stretch to consider him blue-collar? Any statistics that lump Catholics into such a bloc must be more than 30 years old because Catholics have not stood still for at least that long.

I myself am college educated, work for a worldwide corporation, and am an active, practicing Catholic. Joyce A. Kuhl, Lena, Ill. Defending your cause

The editorial "Statesman Savimbi?," Oct. 9, includes a fact injurious to the truth. The Southern rejection of the United States election of 1860 did not cause "violent resistance."

Abraham Lincoln's policies of rejecting the South and his pledge to destroy it drove people in the South, in accordance with the Constitution, to legally separate from the federal government. The South defended itself against the actions of Mr. Lincoln.

Please do not blame people for defending themselves. This is similar to blaming the violence of World War II on the Polish and the Jews. E. Dabney Howe, Rossmoor, Calif.

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