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I am pleased to learn that an effort to train school-board members is to be made [“Can superintendents, school boards get along? This group wants to help,” Local News, March 16]. School boards generally are failing in their responsibilities to ensure well-performing K-12 systems.

Any board-member training course must be comprehensive, beginning with the needs for and methods of monitoring the entire education system and individual school performance. My impression is that school-board members generally do not recognize how poorly Washington public schools are performing. They are aware of high dropout rates, needs for remedial training when high-school diploma holders enter college, needs for remedial reading for about a quarter of entering high-school freshmen, and perhaps even the extremely high incidence of “grade inflation.” But most members seem to accept these circumstances and do not require corrective action.

The principal actions required of boards are in regard to school principles. Each and every school requires a capable principal. Once these principals are found and appointed, the boards must continuously and wholeheartedly back them in taking whatever actions are necessary.

Donald Fritz, Tacoma