ABC's 20/20: "Stupid in America"

Discussion in '2006 Archive' started by Monergist, Jan 16, 2006.

  1. Monergist

    Monergist
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    Did anyone see John Stossel's special on 20/20 last Friday "Stupid in America: How Lack of Choice Cheats Our Kids Out of a Good Education?"

    I have to say that it was the most eye-opening thing that I've seen in the mainstream media in a good while.

    Article LINK HERE<<<<<
     
  2. blackbird

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    Thats EXACTLY why I and my wife Homeschool our kids!!

    When my boy graduates---He'll be ready to fly an F-18 Hornet off the Flight Deck of the USS Abraham Lincoln! Many in the Public schools can't even fly paper airplanes with their education staring them in the face!!!
     
  3. pinoybaptist

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    That's because, as I understand from the show, of the 'No Child Left Behind' thing, which is really a stupid thing.

    The counterpart of that in my old country is 'Good Teacher, Bad Teacher', which is basically, the more students who fail a class, the more the teacher of that class is considered inept and subject to possible dismissal or rejection of application to come down from the mountain schools (ask me about that later, if you will).

    So, what do you think the Filipina public school teacher does ?

    Same thing the American public school teacher does, pass everybody on to the next grade and let the teacher there in that grade handle the student 'deficiency'.

    Bureacracy !
     
  4. standingfirminChrist

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    My oldest nephew graduated 12th grade and could not even tell you the months of the year in order. Nor could he count to 100!

    Just what are the teachers doing to educate the youth of America?
     
  5. emeraldctyangel

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    With the no child left behind act, it prohibits students from being promoted to the next grade level if they cant pass the tests. The tests are a measure of success of the teacher, not the students.

    And blackbird, Ive seen the inside of a F/A-18 Hornet. I think your goal is a bit lofty. :D

    SFinChrist - I cannot imagine that. Im sorry to hear that.

    I did not see the show the OP referred to. I read the article and found it interesting. However, I cannot imagine our school system like the ones in Europe. They make it sound like their schools are like hair salons. Kind of wierd.
     
  6. Circuitrider

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    I thought our home school was pretty good, but somehow we missed out on the F-18 lessons. :eek: :D
     
  7. Major B

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    1. He will have to either attend Annapolis first, or get a college degree so he can try to get to OCS.

    2. The kids in the school where I teach do pretty well.

    3. However, here are some things that teachers have to put up with today that were not a problem before.

    a. In many schools there are a goodly number of kids who effectively have no parents. There are certainly alleged adults of some kind at home, but not parents like you and I had.

    b. Teachers when I was a student were responsible for teaching, and nothing else, unless they were a coach. Misbehaving students were not tolerated, and if a teacher said, "I want this kid out of my room," they were taken away. Students were expected to get their work done, or they were in hot water.

    c. Today, in most cases, teachers are supposed to give surveys, monitor medicated students, make sure students (whose parents can't or won't afford them)have school supplies, be trained to handle "code blues" and must be schooled on handling blood-borne pathogens. We are expected to entertain students and keep the classes lively, and assignments that are too boring are not on the approved list (try telling your boss that your work assignment is too boring). Our students are pulled out of class for "career chats," "drug training," "lifeskills training," (My dad gave me lots of lifeskills training!) and there are lots of impositions on our teaching time. Teachers are required to attend many hours of "professional development training," often learning that the "cool" new teaching method learned last year had been superceded by a "cooler" method. We have a "no excuses" policy in our school which forbids failure.

    Many of our younger teachers (who don't have my rather extensive real world background) are educated in college programs that feature method over knowledge, and in many colleges, are heavy on indoctrination and light on substance.


    In many classrooms, special education students, which once were separately educated, are "mainstreamed" into the class, whether they can keep up with the class or not.

    Blackbird, it isn't yo momma's school.
     
  8. rsr

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    I would rather ask what the parents are doing to educate the youth of America.

    My daughter, though she attended a public school of no particular merit, recieved a far better education than I received. She did more math than I did (I had to give up on helping her during her senior year) and spent a semester (or maybe it was a year?) on Shakespeare, and she was acquainted with the Peace of Augsburg and the Thirty Years War, not to mention the Peace of Westphalia and the War of Spanish Succession.

    These things, of course, do not show up in standards of education mentioned by Stossel, which are weighted toward technical education.
     
  9. Major B

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    SFC and RSR,

    A lot of this depends on where the school is. We don't have a public education system in this nation--we have fifty state systems, and with each state, hundreds of local districts, each with their own system. Often, districts adjacent to one another are as different as night and day, in policy, politics, teacher management, pay and benefits, Pupil Personnel Policies (discipline), special ed policy, and transportation. Each district is largely responsible for funding, albeit with state and federal assistance, and well-off districts with well-off residents are going to have more money to spend and because their kids are usually from more stable homes, these districts are better places to teach--often the rich districts get away with paying LOWER salaries because everyone wants to teach in them.

    I taught for two years in an inner-city school, and gladly took an $8000 cut in pay to move to a working-class district with well-behaved kids from more stable families. In the inner city school, unless you were able to get a couple of advanced courses to teach, the teacher found himself or herself in a fight for control of the classroom every day.

    We have been doing our own version of NCLB in my state since 1990, and it is all about test scores.

    SFC, if your nephew really is as low functioning as he has told you, he must have been, or should have been, in special education.
     
  10. emeraldctyangel

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    Major B, what do you think of the Belgium schools described in the article?

    Id love to pick your brain on the schools in Kentucky. When Im out of the service, my plan is troops to teachers. My degree is 13 months away and I wonder if you have any tips? If you have time, just send me a PM. Thanks!
     
  11. Major B

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    First, a cute little ditty not original to me, but to which I added some stuff.

    TEACHER INTERVIEW

    After being interviewed by the school administration, the
    eager teaching prospect said:

    "Let me see if I've got this right. You want me to go
    into that room with all those kids, and fill their every waking moment
    with a love for learning. And I'm supposed to instill a sense of pride in
    their ethnicity, modify their disruptive behavior, observe them
    for signs of abuse and even censor their T-shirt messages and dress habits

    None of my assignments are to be boring, I must grade honestly, and no child
    is allowed to fail. I have to allow students out of class for athletic team meetings, surveys,
    therapist appointments, book club, and gay-bi-trans-whatever club meetings, and I must
    educate the students as if they were all in my class for the full time.

    You want me to wage a war on drugs and sexually
    transmitted diseases, check their backpacks for weapons of mass destruction, and
    raise their self esteem.

    You want me to teach them patriotism, good citizenship,
    sportsmanship, fair play, how to register to vote, how to balance a
    checkbook, and how to apply for a job.

    I am to check their heads for lice, maintain a safe
    environment, recognize signs of antisocial behavior, make sure all
    students pass the mandatory state exams, even those who don't come to school
    regularly or complete any of their assignments.

    Plus, I am to make sure that all of the students with
    handicaps get an equal education regardless of the extent of their mental
    or physical handicap. And I am to communicate regularly with the
    parents by letter, telephone, newsletter and report card. All of this I am to
    do with just a piece of chalk, a computer, a few books, a bulletin
    board, a big smile AND on a starting salary that qualifies my family for food
    stamps!

    You want me to do all of this and yet you expect me NOT TO PRAY


    Schools overseas have a lot of advantages.

    Unless I am mistaken, the Belgians do not have to educate everyone together.


    In Germany, there are actually three types of High School, Gymnasium, which is straight college prep, Hauptschule, which I think is office worker clerical type stuff, and Realschule, which is trade school oriented. Not only that, but "special" students are not only not mainstreamed to regular classes (federal law), they are not even in the same building. In addition, and most vitally, most European schools have no sports programs at all--sports are handled by the local athletic club.
     
  12. The Galatian

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    It's true. I could make more money teaching in Dallas or Ft. Worth. Not a chance in the world.

    Everything you said is true.
     
  13. Major B

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    Top Ten Signs Of Inner City Teacher Withdrawal

    10. You are no longer afraid to mention the Civil War.
    9. You misplace your flack vest and mace.
    8. You stay after school to grade papers, not to wait until the coast is clear.
    7. You have no problem driving back to your school after dark for a meeting, and don't need a security guard to cross the parking lot.
    6. You get rid of your unlisted number.
    5. You are not afraid for your students to know where you live.
    4. You quit Tae Kwando class.
    3. You are not afraid to step out of your classroom for a minute, lest a felony be committed.
    2. Parent teacher meetings no longer require valium support.
    1. You can actually teach, not referee.

    During my military career, I had lots of challenging tasks: crash investigations, loading nuclear weapons for transport, providing airlift support for several wars, including some that are not yet public knowledge. This was all a piece of cake compared to teaching in an inner city school.

    At my current school, the vacations seem too long.
     
  14. Scott J

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    Our educational failures are the predictable outcome of attempting to foist a system upon our Constitutional Republic that by its very nature must violate the principles upon which our constitution was written.

    Freedom of conscience was important to the founders. So important that they left education a private enterprise of churches, families, and communities. Public education necessarily makes decisions about what ideas can be taught and which ones can't. Decisions must be made about social and ethical mores. This is further complicated by the establishment clause.

    Of course to the founders, the establishment clause would come much closer to keeping government out of schools than religion out of schools.
     
  15. Scarlett O.

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    You have to consider the source of this information.

    For crying out loud, people, it's John Stossel! Did you expect him to look at any of the positives about education? Does he look at the positive side of anything??

    I taught in public school for 22 years and yes, there are some things that I would change and there are some things that I think we are doing a great job of.

    But I learned a long time ago that there are going to be Christians who think that I am either anti-American or else of the devil, for teaching in a public school and there is nothing that I can do about those belief systems.

    I loved what I did for 22 years and I would do it all over in a heartbeat. The good and the bad. God called me to it and I did it for Him and so did all of the faculty that I worked with.

    I am just sorry for my younger colleagues who are just beginning their callings into the field of education that they are entering a profession that is utterly thankless.

    Especially amongst fundamentalist Christians.

    In my opinion, the parents need to decide what educational arena best suits their children. It could be public school, private school, church school, or homeschool.

    That decision is between the parents and God.

    The calling to teach in a public school is ALSO between the individual and God. It was for me and I resent it when people tell me that public schools are "cesspools" and "of the devil" and "not the place for a Christian child nor adult" and "making our children stupid." Trust me, I have been called a few things and have had to listen to many ugly things from people at my church and Christians in general. One Christian even told me to my face that a "saved" person could not teach in a public school.

    Just as there are bad public schools, there are church schools and private schools that do NOT give a quality education to children.

    And we all know that while there are some really good homeschooling practices going on in America that there are some "homeschooled" kids who are nothing more than drop-outs. They do absolutely nothing. NOTHING. And you know it.

    There is good and bad in each situation.

    I just get tired, as a public school advocate, of the public school being labeled as the bad apple.....ALL of the time.
     
  16. Scott J

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    Actually, I appreciate Stossel for being far more objective in his criticism than your average reporter. Considering what ABC did to Brit Hume for his refusal to allow Clinton to ignore tough questions, I am frankly surprised that Stossel gets away with it.

    I am actually thankful for the devoted Christians who work in the public schools... but they aren't the ones dictating philosophy, worldview, or curriculum.

    I am sorry that they are entering a profession that is seeing the leading edge results of the philosphies the public school system has indoctrinated much of the last generation of parents with.

    If you indoctrinate children with social liberalism... don't be surprised when it effects their parenting.

    The public school system as a whole began to adopt anti-Christian philosophies and practices before fundamentalists objected.

    Absolutely- and to that end, I should get a tax credit for the cost of tuition since my child won't be costing the public school $8000 per year. What a bargain for the government! They give me a tax credit of say $12,000... and my kids don't cost them $24,000. Saves the state 50% on each child that's taken out of the system.

    BTW, all public schools are not created equal. Our small system here in rural Missouri is very conservative. The religious influence definitely impacts the way the curriculum is taught... and how much non-sense the parents will put up with.

    OTOH, my first child started out attending a public school in the Chicago suburbs about ten years ago. We had to constantly deprogram our daughter as 1st and 2nd graders were already getting a strong dose of humanistic and evolutionist indoctrination. Our last straw before making the decision to move her to a Christian school was when the 2nd grade teacher informed her that she couldn't tell another student that Christmas was Jesus' birthday since it might "offend" them.

    BTW, the public school teachers averaged about $75K per year. The Baptist school teachers were at about $25K-$30K. The public school spent well over $10K per student per year. The Baptist school charged about $2500... and uniformly outperformed the public school.
     
  17. Scott J

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    BTW, my major objection against public schools isn't that they fail to teach basic skills but rather that they indoctrinate kids with a worldview- whether actively or passively.

    There really isn't a right answer on this topic except some type of system that allows those of us who oppose the worldview being taught in schools to withdraw our kids... and the associated educational funds. If the school teaches my value system then it most certainly violates the rights of parents who are more liberal... and vice versa. If they try to be neutral then you end up with a quasi post-modernism that "respects" all views equally while diminishing the notion of absolute truth.

    All education involves indoctrination. It is unavoidable.
     
  18. Johnv

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    Oh, man, I missed it. I absolutely love John Stossel's stories [​IMG]
     
  19. jet11

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    Oh, man, I missed it. I absolutely love John Stossel's stories [​IMG] </font>[/QUOTE]You can go here, scroll down to the video section and watch it.

    Stupid in America
     

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