Kudos to the courageous students and parents who spoke out against the unfair state tests, based on a curriculum that hasn't even been taught yet ["Dozens opt out in test boycott," News, April 17].

They get an A+ in one of life's most important lessons -- never allow yourself to be abused.

Robert Berger, Bellerose

I am an elementary school teacher with more than 10 years experience administering both the third- and fifth-grade state English Language Assessment. I currently teach fifth grade.

Standardized testing is nothing new. Although past tests have generally been challenging to most students, this year's fifth-grade ELA question and answer choices were just plain mean. The multiple-choice questions and answers were overly wordy, ambiguous, and many included more than one possible answer. On some occasions, I, as the literate adult, had difficulty reaching a definitive conclusion.

What are we trying to accomplish? These are 10-year-olds. Elementary school has become middle school.

As a parent, I had the misfortune this year of witnessing my confident, intelligent 9-year-old daughter -- who previously loved school -- transform into a puddle of anxiety, tears and reluctance to attend.

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Laurie Bergen, Bay Shore