Reading, Writing, And Rancor

Beverly Hillman can't pin down exactly when or why Turner Elementary School hit the skids. In the '70s, she says, her daughter got a good education at the highly ranked school in the Pittsburgh suburb of Wilkinsburg. But as the local steel industry died and Wilkinsburg grew poorer, Hillman has been frustrated by the school's deterioration. The last straw came when two boys beat up her 8-year-old granddaughter in an empty hallway. "They just let those kids sit there and ferment," complains Hillman.

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