What to do about schools

Discussion in 'Education' started by Baruch Menachem, Apr 25, 2010.

  1. Baruch Menachem
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    Baruch Menachem '

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    A friend of mine did Peace Corps in Kenya. (His soon to be wife went to Thailand) He taught math. It was his favorite two years. The kids were committed and attentive and really enthusiastic. They came to school neat and polite and dedicated. This dispute the fact that for many of them it really was a five mile hike, uphill both ways. (Given the state of Kenyan roads in the early 80s)

    He was so enthused that he applied to be a teacher in SC (Where his wife lived).

    He burnt out after 1 year, but kept working for two more.

    Nobody in the school seemed to care. Not the other teachers, not the administration, and least of all the students. He had to get stitches one time trying to stop a fight between two girls who were drunk at 10:30.

    Education in public schools seems to be the most angry and militant of the unions. This despite tenure, despite wages that start in the low 40s, pensions that allow for early retirement and despite long vacations. (Oregon schoolkids are only in class 175 days a year.)

    In Kenya, schoolbooks were shared, resources were limited, but everyone was on the same page and the kids did really well. And discipline while draconian, was universally accepted as necessary for learning.

    Here in Oregon it costs 12,000 per kid per year to produce marginal results.

    Nationally, we have dangerous schools, little learning, and high expenses.

    Maybe we should just privatize the whole system. We pay private schools 11,000 per head. We test twice a year (Independent proctors) and if the school actually produces a result, they get a 2000 bonus, and if they produce a really positive result, a bigger bonus.

    Or it might be better to run the schools the way the pentagon runs a bomber program. Our bombers and submarines work real well. Our schools, don't.
     
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  2. Bill O'Olberman
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    Bill O'Olberman Active Member

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    Most states actually mandate that they provide a free public education to school aged kids.

    Everyone in America deserves access to a free education. I think some kids who actually do want to learn and achieve would be punished if they had no access to a free, public education.
     
  3. chanel
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    chanel Silver Member

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    I have a lot to say on this, but let me share a personal experience. My son went to Uganda for six weeks and taught. He had a similar experience. Each semester cost $10 and parents would spend every dime they had to send their kids to school. Uniforms cost $10 but were optional. The orphanage he was affiliated with provided the kids with uniforms, so he said it was obvious which kids had no parents. Instead of being embarrassed, they wore these uniforms proudly because they loved their school.

    He also decided he wanted to be a teacher when he got back. I support him in whatever decision he makes, but warned him that American kids are quite different. I love my job - but it's not at all what I expected it would be.

    I don't think privatization is the answer, but certainly competition is healthy. My fear is that the negative publicity schools are getting will translate into even more student apathy and antagonism. We need to balance what is wrong with what is right. Bashing schools translates to kids - "school sucks". That is dangerous rhetoric. Many of our students and public schools are doing very, very well. Let's focus on what is working.
     
  4. Big Fitz
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    Big Fitz User Quit *****

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    the problem is... there is no free lunch. So you are asking for a left handed catcher's mit. Something that does not exist.

    This is just an extension of the deadbeat crisis we have in this nation. Someone else must pay for my child. No. They don't. That's the point. We need to find it in ourselves the desire to improve ourselves and do what is necessary to insure our personal success, and that means an education.

    I can safely say that there needs to be a fundamental change with how the educational system operates. Children should be educated, but let's face it... they're not entitled to it, any more than you are entitled to health care. It should be there for those who desire to use it and are willing to abide with the system. Those who do not desire to cooperate with their education may as well just rattle around on the streets doing nothing. They're only dragging down those who DO care about improving themselves by diverting resources to control them. That's heartless, and not an acceptable solution, but now to figure out what IS acceptable, because the current set up is not.

    I know it's 'cruel' in the minds of the namby pamby feelgooders out there, but who deserves the kindness more, if we want to talk about doing good? Those who want to become contributors to society or those who wish to only be parasites and destroyers of it? I suppose we could force some children into schools of last resort, but I suspect those would be more like prisons of the worst youthful offenders, and highly unlikely to yield much to society. So... what are we to do?

    Honestly, the major thrust has to start with the personal responsibility of the parents who are constantly looking for someone else to do their job for them. The rich abdicate on this responsibility to forward their careers or financial gain or just plain selfishness. But the poor often do the same for the same reasons, just on a smaller scale.

    When I see children at work, I know which ones have involved parents who have instilled on their children the desire to succeed or fear of failure. You can see children raised without real control or are being left to raise themselves. Some seem to have an inner drive and are doing it for themselves... but they are the minority. Most become a flail, smashing at random on their classmates and trying to find the structure they know subconsciously they need. When they find it though, often they turn around and being to thrive as long as the boundaries and discipline is there. At least in some small way, I'm able to give them that, and have been greatly rewarded by it.

    But these are the real underlying crises here... Deadbeat entitlement junkies abdicating their responsibility as long as someone else does it for them so they can go back to their addictions or desires. And everyone looking to pass the buck to 'someone' to do something.

    To change the hearts of a decadent society back to their grandfather's ways is a daunting task, but must be done if we, as a culture, are to survive as Americans... or as victims of a stronger (not necessarily better) culture.
     
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  5. Samson
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    Samson Póg Mo Thóin Supporting Member

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    Sounds like the USA 1900: Almost all americans lived in poor, rural settings, and those that didn't, did not associate with those that did.

    Sounds like a typical "Title I" school (most of the kids qualify for "free and reduced" meals because their parents are poor).

    Again, USA 1900

    In Oregon, teachers are paid $40K/yr, kids have their own books, they MUST be provided transportation, if they are disabled they MUST be provided a nurse, special bus.

    Almost all schools provide Theatre, Football, Band.

    They are Air Conditioned and or Heated

    Some public schools are very good. Some are not.

    Comparing conditions in the USA with conditions in any other country is futile. We are unique in MANY ways, primarily heterogeneous demographics and wealth).
     
  6. Granny
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    Granny Gold Member

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    Big Fitz is right - on so many levels. It would help to have the government stay out of the picture - at least in terms of curriculum. But it's imperative that parents get involved with their children's education. Of course, schools are so unaccustomed to having parental involvement that they don't pay attention. My grandson's school tried the no response bit with my daughter and she made a personal visit to the office. They said they weren't use to dealing with parents, she said, "Well, meet Tyler's mother." She's had no problems since.

    Having worked for labor lawyers for several years, I am against any kind of unionization - and that includes teachers' unions. The unions don't do nearly for their members what they do to the upper echelon of unions. They hinder more that they help.

    On the other hand, my hat's off to many of our teachers just for walking into the classroom. It's becoming a more and more dangerous occupation. Unfortunately, the only way for a child to get a decent education any more is to put them in private schools.
     
  7. uscitizen
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    uscitizen Senior Member

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    Close about 1/4 of the schools and only let in the ones that are proper students.
    Throw out the dead weight.
    Heck we don't have enough jobs anyway. Why spend money educating them?

    It is socialist anyway So I am sure all the Tea Partiers will support this.
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2010
  8. Douger
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    Douger BANNED

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    You don't get it either.
    That's a plan coming together. Create unemployable idiots for cannon fodder for the Empires military. The really smart ones can work at Walmart, Avis rent a car and Burger King.
    The elites children go to private academys and follow the family's foot steps.
    The perfect plan.No competition for the elites little dark angels.
     
  9. Samson
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    Samson Póg Mo Thóin Supporting Member

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    By "proper students" I assume you mean Aryan, middle class.:rolleyes:
     
  10. Samson
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    Samson Póg Mo Thóin Supporting Member

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    Gunny's gonna resent that.

    :eusa_whistle:
     

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