Education: The Battle for Lowell

Many big-city high schools specialize in some vocation or art and draw commuter students from all over—but few offer the specialty that engages San Francisco's Lowell High School. It is an all-academic school that welcomes any youngster from any district on the basis of scholarly ability alone, and as a result is the No. 1 college-geared public school in the West.

Last week San Francisco hotly debated Lowell's fate. At issue: School Superintendent Harold Spears's plan to shift Lowell from its condemned building in downtown San Francisco to new quarters in a middle-income...

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