Eight years teaching AZ middle school students, I never once could teach Social Studies or Science at grade level. Far too many students had been socially promoted without having learned and understood basic concepts: math, writing, reading. It was laughable. Requiring 3rd grade promotees to be reading at grade level is a wonderful first step. Raising the passing grade in all subjects to 70% should be the next step. Stop insisting all students should go to college. Start offering vo-tech courses, in which students will need to use their mental abilities as well as their hands. Raise the state high school graduation rate goal to 100%. The current 80% goal is a joke and reflects the state education department’s mindset. Overdue for changes.