The Maryland Department of Education defines a high school diploma as a 12-year course of study and achievement. Twelve years cannot be shortened, which is why the Baltimore City Department of Social Services had to go to Pennsylvania. There, what you know is more important than how long you sat in a classroom ("Baltimore foster care youths get diploma in a day in Philadelphia," Nov. 23).
I brought this problem to the attention of state officials in the 1980s, when my son scored a 1330 on the SAT at the age of 13. The Baltimore County officials would not allow him to attend college because he hadn't sat for 12 years in a school classroom. County school officials were very concerned about the 12 years and could have cared less about a great SAT score.
Pennsylvania, which is not a Democratic Party dictatorship, apparently cares greatly about what you know and what you can do with what you know. Pass the high school tests and you are off and running.
Hooray for the Department of Social Services for trying to problem solve for kids that could stand a hand up.
Bill Krehnbrink, Perry Hall
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