Monday, July 23, 2007


She was from Bangladesh, and she had two sisters. She was the oldest, and the brightest.

The next sister was a year younger, and also bright.

The youngest sister, I'm afraid, was simply not in the same league.

When they took the NYC LAB English proficiency test, they scored precisely as I'd have expected, Jasmin highest, the middle sister in the middle, and the youngest lower. But only the youngest, the least capable, was placed in regular English.

That's because NYC had determined that the younger you were, the more difficult it is to learn a language. Reality dictates precisely the opposite.

But testing does bring out life's little ironies.

Jasmin wanted to be an English teacher. That was too much for her father, who took her out of the country and forced her to become a doctor (or at least planned to).

I hope she's well. I hope she's happy. You can never know about some kids.
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