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Eric Fruits, Ph.D.

Laurelhurst Neighborhood Association


February 19, 2010

Carole Smith, Superintendent

Ruth Adkins, Board Member, Zone 1
David Wynde, Board Member, Zone 2
Bobbie Regan, Board Member, Zone 3
Martin Gonzalez, Board Member, Zone 4
Pam Knowles, Board Member, Zone 5
Trudy Sargent, Board Member, Zone 6
Dilafruz Williams, Board Member, Zone 7
Henry Johnson, Board Member, Student Representative
Portland Public Schools
501 N Dixon Street
Portland, OR 97227-1804

RE: Laurelhurst Neighborhood Association resolution

Portland Public Schools high school system design

Dear Ms. Smith and School Board:

The Board of Directors of the Laurelhurst Neighborhood Association passed the following
resolution regarding the Portland Public Schools high school system design now under
consideration by the school district.

The Board of Directors of Laurelhurst Neighborhood Association supports our

neighborhood schools. The LNA is opposed to any reconfiguration of Portland
Public Schools that would limit, in any way, students’ access to their current
neighborhood high schools.

LNA Board opposes any configuration of PPS high schools that would convert
Franklin High School and/or Grant High School to a focus and/or magnet school
and/or any other form that would inhibit, in any way, residents’ ability to attend
Franklin High School and/or Grant High School as currently configured as
neighborhood schools in which enrollment is based on location relative to the

Laurelhurst Neighborhood Association Board Members

Eric Fruits (President); Beth Zauner (Vice President); M. J. Coe (Past President and SEUL Representative); Jeanne Ferguson
(Secretary); Kristi Kasparek (Treasurer); Goudarz Eghtedari (Newsletter Editor); Gary Naylor (At-Large Rep.); Elena McPhee (NE
Quad Rep.); Lyle Howard (NW Quad Rep.); Kelly Bocian (SE Quad Rep.); Jim Edelson (SW Quad Rep.)
Carole Smith and School Board
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The high school redesign as currently articulated appears to be a solution in search of a problem.
While I understand your concerns with “equity,” it is not clear that the district fully understands
the distinction between equity of resources and equity of outcomes. There is no reliable
evidence that shifting higher performing students to lower performing schools produces
spillovers that fill the achievement gap. Indeed, after years and years of reconfigurations and
experiments, PPS has not demonstrated that any rearranging of resources improves performance
at languishing schools without worsening outcomes elsewhere. Shipping students out of
Laurelhurst neighborhood to support underperforming schools elsewhere will only increase the
number of students lost to the constantly churning seas of educational experimentation.

I encourage you to consider and respect the strong attachment that our neighborhood has to our
neighborhood high schools. We are fortunate to live in a city with so many excellent education
options. Even with so many alternatives, an overwhelming number of families have chosen to
send their children to their neighborhood high school. Any reconfiguration that eliminates
Franklin High School or Grant High School as neighborhood schools will encourage families to
consider alternatives outside of PPS.

Respectfully submitted

Eric Fruits, Ph.D.

Laurelhurst Neighborhood Association