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Sen. Frederick's 'when-I-was-a-kid' story

Oregon Sen. Lew Frederick, D-Portland, met with students at Multnomah Education Service District Thursday as part of the Joint Committee on School Success tour of the state.

JONATHAN HOUSE/PORTLAND TRIBUNE - Center, Oregon Sen. Lew Frederick, D-Portland, speaks with students at the Multnomah Education Service District in Portland Thursday, Sept. 27, 2018.Portland-area students who met with Oregon lawmakers Thursday at Multnomah Education Service District got one of those "when-I-was-a-kid…" stories, with a self-depreciating punchline, from Oregon Sen. Lew Frederick, D-Portland.

Frederick lamented that when he was a student, boys weren't allowed to take a home economics class, while girls were banned from auto shop class.

"I had to learn (to cook) at home. Obviously, I like to eat," he said, looking down at his belly.

Frederick's story was prompted by a comment from Blair DeLetts, a senior at Portland's Parkrose High School. Blair said she thinks students should learn basic life skills in high school, such as how to apply for a loan, pay for a mortgage and cook a meal.

Frederick's meeting with students was part of a statewide tour by the Joint Committee on School Success to hear from students, teachers and others on what's working and what are impediments in the state's public education system. So far, the 14-member committee has held 11 roundtables with students. The committee is charged with proposing policies to improve the state's on-time high school graduation rate. The deadline for their recommendations is December.