YOU WANT TO KNOW WHAT IS WRONG WITH OUR EDUCATION SYSTEM?
ASK A TEACHER IN THE CLASS ROOM, NOT A POLITICIAN.
There is no standard child. No two children learn exactly alike. No two school classes are alike. Children are not automatons with a diagnostic chip that you can access to review for standard operation, and updates that can be download to correct deficiencies to a set standard.
I have been a teacher. I have taught grades two to 12 and have been a principal of four different schools. For what it is worth, I can give you my take on the public school system.
First of all, we should distinguish between private schools and public schools. A private school’s main objective is not to teach children. Private schools are in the business of making money; and offering parents a school society of ‘people like us.
The public school’s primary objective is to teach children. But, our public schools are not preforming efficiently because politicians, with no teaching experience, are setting the curriculum and standards. Then the politicians use poor school performance as a platform for their next election.
Here is my formula for a productive school.
Standardized test should be done away with. Like private schools, standardize testing facilities are in the business of selling test. Their tests do nothing to encourage and support student learning and to increase student self-confidence.
Because every class is different, the teacher, in coordination with the principal, using the scope and sequence set for that grade level, should determine the daily curriculum and the standard to be met for her/his particular class.
In elementary school there are too many subjects taught to be mastered. Elementary school should focus on four main subjects: reading - to include literature; math; science and writing - to encompass grammar, creative writing, computer word processing and computer literacy.
Cutting down the number of classes in the lower grades insures mastery.
Junior high should have a comprehensive general math review in the seventh grade and geometry in the eighth; earth science in the seventh grade and environmental science in the eighth grade – to include an environmental project requirement; language arts – to include theater, art and art history. There should be an eight grade geography requirement. With the exception of hard math; the seventh and eighth grades should be open ended – encouraging research and creative thinking.
High school students should have a choice of semester length classes to choose from to supplement the following year-long requirements: Algebra One, Biology, Physics, Chemistry, American History, World History, Civics/ U.S. Government – to include a local community project.
Students graduating from high school should have a good general basic education and should have been taught to be logical, critical thinkers with their own opinions.
But the first step is to have the government dramatically increase funding for education; but otherwise stay out of the actual process of educating students.
It goes without saying: there is no place for religious doctrine in public education.
It is a shame that our government doesn’t fund education with the same fervor that it funds the military.