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Old 02-01-2005, 10:41 PM   #31
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I'm 14, and from what I've seen at school, this doesn't surprise me one bit.

Luckily, my parents always taught me to stay informed and form my own opinions...since I can remember, I always used to have "debates" with my dad. This past election, he'd play Devil's advocate and take Bush's stance on everything to prove to me that politics aren't black and white. I guess not everybody has that kind of enocuragement, but still

My social studies teacher this year is also great with enocuraging debate and analysis, but in past years I've had some very by-the-book teachers.

People don't know what the Patriot Act is. They don't know that Bagdhad is in Iraq (some thought it was in Afghanistan), they don't know what social security is or what the word "privatize" even means. They sport their campaign stickers (usually Bush in the area I live in, but it goes both ways), yet they don't know their candidates' positions. A girl in my language arts class had NO idea about what's going on in the Sudan right now. She was horrified that *any* genocide had ever been committed since the Holocaust (at least she'd heard of that!) Apparently "Rwanda" means nothing to her.

I agree U2democrat, my generation is embarrassing me, and *frustrating* me...and the apathy of the American public in general...it doesn't say much about our professed love for democracy when (according to some reports anyway) the turnout rate in Iraq is higher than ours at home. So it really does come back down to taking these things for granted.



And I'd like to add another reason for this attitude:

You say that it's by-the-book teacihng that bores kids and doesn't involve them or encourage them to stay informed. Well, a little thing called the No Child Left Behind bill only worsens the problem. I've already noticed more teachers "teaching for the test" or basically only covering basic straight-forward concepts that are supposed to be on the ridiculous slew of standardized tests. My mom's friend is a school-teacher, and she could go on all day about how ineffective and counterproductive this bill is.

But in the end, it has little to do with any bill the government can enact, we've got to get rid of this widespread apathy...we are not garuanteed anything!
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Old 02-01-2005, 11:37 PM   #32
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Quote:
Originally posted by VertigoGal
I'm 14, and from what I've seen at school, this doesn't surprise me one bit.

Luckily, my parents always taught me to stay informed and form my own opinions...since I can remember, I always used to have "debates" with my dad. This past election, he'd play Devil's advocate and take Bush's stance on everything to prove to me that politics aren't black and white. I guess not everybody has that kind of enocuragement, but still

My social studies teacher this year is also great with enocuraging debate and analysis, but in past years I've had some very by-the-book teachers.

People don't know what the Patriot Act is. They don't know that Bagdhad is in Iraq (some thought it was in Afghanistan), they don't know what social security is or what the word "privatize" even means. They sport their campaign stickers (usually Bush in the area I live in, but it goes both ways), yet they don't know their candidates' positions. A girl in my language arts class had NO idea about what's going on in the Sudan right now. She was horrified that *any* genocide had ever been committed since the Holocaust (at least she'd heard of that!) Apparently "Rwanda" means nothing to her.

I agree U2democrat, my generation is embarrassing me, and *frustrating* me...and the apathy of the American public in general...it doesn't say much about our professed love for democracy when (according to some reports anyway) the turnout rate in Iraq is higher than ours at home. So it really does come back down to taking these things for granted.



And I'd like to add another reason for this attitude:

You say that it's by-the-book teacihng that bores kids and doesn't involve them or encourage them to stay informed. Well, a little thing called the No Child Left Behind bill only worsens the problem. I've already noticed more teachers "teaching for the test" or basically only covering basic straight-forward concepts that are supposed to be on the ridiculous slew of standardized tests. My mom's friend is a school-teacher, and she could go on all day about how ineffective and counterproductive this bill is.

But in the end, it has little to do with any bill the government can enact, we've got to get rid of this widespread apathy...we are not garuanteed anything!
You're 14? Damn. Good going girl! You and U2democrat (and I'm sure a few others here too) do give oldies like me (no smartass comments -- I've a birthday coming up and I'm feeling every minute of my age right now! ) hope for the future.
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Old 02-02-2005, 08:54 PM   #33
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Thanks indra!

...being a teen, if you want to be taken seriously, all it requires is proper punctualisation and capitalization, and Presto! people think you have a clue what you're talking about! hehe

(seriously though, anyone who thinks No Child Left Behind is a good idea is incredibly out of touch and should be lined up and sh---I mean, uh, encouraged to change their mind.)
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Old 02-03-2005, 04:17 AM   #34
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Originally posted by VertigoGal

(seriously though, anyone who thinks No Child Left Behind is a good idea is incredibly out of touch and should be lined up and sh---I mean, uh, encouraged to change their mind.)
Having been a teacher for ten years I would say there are good things about NCLB. I guess I must be out of touch since I am able to see both the good and the bad.

I support the idea of NCLB. I believe schools need to be held accountable. I believe that many teachers were doing one of two things, not making sure every child was learning their basic skills (Oh they will get it next year) or they were pacing themselves through the curriculum too slow (Oh they will get it next year).

For some kids, both the bright and the slow to learn, next year never came.

What I find completely insane about NCLB is that every child is expected to pass by 2014. While the idea is a noble one, I am not willing to have schools taken over by the governement if schools are not meeting that insane mark. What people do not realize, is that they have measured they annual yearly progress you need to make to reach 100%. If you fail to make that growth two years in a row, you are labeled a failing school and the governement takes over the building.

Out of over 1,500 schools in MA my building has placed between #7 and 130 over the past six years. I am currently on the committee working with the staff to continue to make process towards the 2014 goal. By my sestimates, we have three years until they label us a failing to perform school.

Education has been improving because of NCLB. Almost every teacher I know feels that we have as a group been doing better at passing students to the next grade with a stronger skills base. The problem is, we are not going to keep pace with the 100% bar. It is going to catch us. And this is the miost depressing part of the whol thing, I work with people who work their assed off for kids, and it is not going to matter.
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Old 02-03-2005, 08:54 PM   #35
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Alright, maybe I was overgeneralizing a little...as a schoolteacher, I certainly don't think you're out of touch at all. I can only go on what I've seen, heard, and read about the bill, and I have a very negative opinion of the whole principle.

While I understand that we need to make sure teachers are constantly covering all the cirriculum, I don't think *more* emphasis on standardized testing is the way to go about it. "Teaching for the test" is so common and easy to spot, and in the long run won't do anything to help us compete globally. Punishing teachers for how well their students do on a condensed multiple choice test seems counterproductive...
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Old 02-04-2005, 01:20 AM   #36
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Damn, I hate the freaking typos I make...lol
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