Since I have devoted most of my life to learning, both as student and as teacher, I keep up with what is going on in the education arena. I've grown deeply concerned over the years about the educational system in this country. Let me tell you why. Every week there seems to be something new and disturbing on the news. There are things that I question, things that make no sense.
1. School used to be a safe place. When parents sent their children off to school they really didn't fear that they could be shot. Or that a teacher might try and seduce their children (both BOYS and GIRLS)?
2. That their child might become the target of bullies, and sadly, take his/her life?
3. Who in a million years would have thought that teens would participate in "sexting"? Where was modesty lost? When did self-esteem get shattered?
4. Or that high school girls would make "pacts" to become pregnant?
5. When did Montana decide that kindergartners needed to know about detailed human anatomy? And by 5th grade be expected to understand different sexual positions?
6. When was it decided in Massachusetts that kids should go to a mosque on a field trip...and the children have the option to participate in Islamic prayers?
7. School boards are choosing textbooks that leave out entire sections of history. Important things.
8. I have witnessed many young children that are unable to even say The Pledge of Allegiance. It is not required for them to recite it on a daily basis at their schools.
9. Many of our country's children graduate not even being able to read at an adult level...or fill out an application...or answer simple history questions? (Have you ever seen Jay Leno's, Jaywalking excerpts?) Is it any wonder why perspective employers are shaking their heads?
10. When did this become acceptable?
11. Are we, as a society, like the frogs in the pot? Not realizing that the temperature is being turned up, until we are all boiled?
12. I'm usually not a negative person.
13. But, this is serious business.
14. Don't get me wrong. There are many great teachers out there.
15. Yet, even a great teacher is shackled to his/her school district's curriculum. If it is poor curriculum, he/she still must teach it--or face job loss.
16. I know.
17. I taught in the public school system for 17 years.
18. Make no mistake about it.
19. School is not what it used to be.
20. Children of this country ARE learning...but, the question is WHAT? And can we live with that?
- Cyberbullying: An Interview With My Four Kids (scrapsofmygeeklife.com)
- Learning lessons (bbc.co.uk)
- School and Children (socyberty.com)
- School's Out Forever (zdnet.com)
- Alfie Kohn: What Passes for School Reform: "Value-Added" Teacher Evaluation and Other Absurdities (huffingtonpost.com)
- School Sorry for Prayer on Mosque Field Trip (foxnews.com)
- Montana sex education proposal draws outrage (sfgate.com)
- Sexting worries parents, worries me (panasianbiz.com)