Letters to the Editor

Sergeant Exam

I was appalled by many sections of the Oct. 22 article about the sergeant’s exam. The sentence that jumped out at me the most was the one that said, “The documents [on the Civil Service website] revealed that 120 candidates took the 2019 100-word multiple-choice written examination and 54 or 64.8% failed to achieve a score of 70 or better.” Please tell me that this is a Beachcomber typo! [The author agrees with you. Thanks for pointing it out.]

By the end of third grade, I knew arithmetic and how to divide 120 into 54 by hand and change the decimal result into a percent (we had no hand calculators in those days). My #2 pencil still gives me 45%. Even if I hadn’t learned long division or percents, it was immediately obvious to me that half of 120 is 60 (and half of 12 is 6). I believe that 54 is still less than 60 and that would mean a little under 50% didn’t pass that year.

Since the Civil Service Department is the gateway to obtain most jobs in the city and those working for that department apparently don’t have math literacy skills, that explains a lot about our city. Maybe they need to pay a high-priced consultant to create a chart for them to convert a score to a percentage when there are 100 points on the test!

Christine Elia


I spent 30 years at LBPD, passed several promotional exams and was promoted each time. There is no doubt in my mind that the test results were less than honest.

Bud Dickman


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