Are certain educational policies effective? Depends on what your goal is

Discussion in 'General Education' started by EdEd, Nov 30, 2017.

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  1. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Comrade

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    That is ridiculous. I guess in this instance, racism is indeed a factor. However, I think it is safe to say that a majority of parents are not like this.
     
  2. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Given the current state of the United States, I'm not so sure you're right about that.
     
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  3. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Comrade

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    I’m not saying racism does not exist, because it absolutely does. However, our society is not racist, meaning there is no systemic racism. For example, millions of Americans are Spanish. That does not mean that we are a Spanish culture. Just because a few million people are racist does not mean that society is racist, also. This is a false equivalency that is made FAR too often.
     
  4. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    [​IMG]
     
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  5. TrademarkTer

    TrademarkTer Comrade

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    Ben Schapiro!!!!!!!
     
  6. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Comrade

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    Is this supposed to be a rebuttal?
     
  7. Ms.Holyoke

    Ms.Holyoke Comrade

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    OK...so how would you explain the disparities in performance (the achievement gap) in our schools today? And how would you explain the school to prison pipeline?
     
  8. 2ndTimeAround

    2ndTimeAround Phenom

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    Did you read my post? I'm thinking not.
     
  9. 2ndTimeAround

    2ndTimeAround Phenom

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    I'll tell you what I see. I see achievement gaps based on socioeconomic status. Which often goes hand-in-hand with race, but that doesn't mean it is due to race.
     
  10. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Comrade

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    Single parent homes. The only parent is almost always working to make ends meet and so the child does not get enrichment and read to from an early age. Studies have shown that children who are read to, regardless of their socioeconomic status, are much more successful in life than those children who are not. In fact, there is an 88% probability that children who are poor readers in 1st grade will be poor readers in 4th grade.

    This is one contributory factor to the achievement gap. There should be after-school services at these schools specifically for addressing struggling readers. There are mountains of research that supports this.
     
  11. EdEd

    EdEd Aficionado

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    So....many interesting conversations happening here, but again I'd like to bring us back to initial question, which was:

    What benefits could we see in school choice initiatives, and how would we know they were working aside from achievement data?

    When we use terms like "failing schools," what does that mean, and are there ways of defining educational goals & outcomes other than achievement data? I brought up an example on the last page, and another idea was raised on this one: Parent Involvement. For example, are there measures/studies of parent involvement that control for both charter/non-charter and SES? Would it be valid to say that charters are "successful" because more parents are involved, even if achievement data do not suggest it?

    Believe me, like you all I could go on (and have gone on) for many pages on the value of charters and school choice based on which schools produce higher academic achievement. But, I wanted to explore it from this other angle so that we have a deeper understanding of why school choice may be valuable to some people.
     
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  12. Tyler B.

    Tyler B. Devotee

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    This is a real pickle of a problem. When I taught at high poverty schools, most of my students came in highly stressed due to poverty. Their social skills tended to be significantly underdeveloped so that recess and even cooperative learning activities often ended with harsh conflicts.

    Each lesson had a calm-down-and-focus element that took up instructional time not needed at my current (low-poverty) school. By the end of the year, our high transiency rates left me with only 3 or 4 students that I started the year with. Our scores were low, yet our dedicated, skilled staff performed miracles routinely.

    It was not uncommon for me to take in a 9 year old non-reader and get her reading up to the second grade level in the 7 months before she moved away. Her test scores were terrible. Had I failed? I don't think so.

    Lightly tossing out the term "failing schools" throws ashes on the wonderful people who dare to teach this fragile population. I'm not saying there aren't some weak teachers in low income schools (or other schools), but to imply that the low scores at high poverty schools are the teachers' fault is wrong and shows a profound level of ignorance about the situation.

    Any teacher who uses the term "failing schools" should feel it burn on their tongue.
     
  13. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Comrade

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    With clarification, when I say “failing schools” I mean schools that continually have failure rates, in all aspects, not just standardized test scores. For example, when half of an ENTIRE state’s student population can’t pass that says something, doesn’t it? I’m not saying the teachers are to blame here. It could be the administration’s fault and it could be the parent’s fault for not forcing their children to go to school or disciplining their children when they misbehave.
     
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  14. a2z

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    If this was possible any school and teacher should have been able to produce the same results. The question then becomes why didn't they? What was so special about you or the child's situation that you were able to produce results? And, if it was only results with one child because of a specific situation that changed for that child, we really have to think of different ways to reach children because their condition probably won't be changing any time soon.
     
  15. Tyler B.

    Tyler B. Devotee

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    I want you to think about this: why is zip code the best way to find "failing schools"? Because it's not the teachers, admin or other causes: it's poverty. That's why you can't use that awful term without harming your colleagues working a job, difficult enough without other teachers putting bricks in their backpacks.
     
  16. Tyler B.

    Tyler B. Devotee

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    Any teacher could help this type of child, if the kid would just spend more time in one school.
     
  17. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Comrade

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    The majority of the world is impoverished and billions of children the world over perform well in schools in spite of their social status. American students who are at or below the poverty level are still much more wealthy than students in other countries who are poor. Poverty is certainly a factor but not the cause of low student outcomes. Statistical experiments have been done and it has been determined that lack of enrichment and reading accessibility in early years are major contributor factories for poor school performance. And these results were independent of socioeconomic status.
     
  18. Tyler B.

    Tyler B. Devotee

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    If you are saying that poor kids in other nations outscore the US kids, it's not true.

    This is poppycock pumped out by the school privatization trolls. They will say, "China has a large population of poor kids, yet their math scores are higher than ours." What's true is that poor and rural schools in China do not offer these tests to their students. They lack the resources. (So much for a worker's paradise.) Which schools do have the wherewithal to give the PISA test? Wealthy and upper class suburban schools.

    You can not find a nation that does a better job with poor kids than the USA, unless it's the Northern European countries like Finland. Since their poor is only 3% of their population, they use a simple trick to bring up scores: integrate;not segregate. They mix their poor with middle and high income students for astounding results. Hey - why don't we try that in the USA?
     
  19. EdEd

    EdEd Aficionado

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    Tyler, fully agreed that "failing" is a loaded term and often misused. I think we're probably better off by simply throwing that one out and being more specific when we talk about school performance, hence the return to my question about other ways of measuring other than achievement.

    So, are we all in agreement different people can have different goals for our educational institutions? In the end, what is our real responsibility to students? Tyler, if we're not responsible for achievement or outcomes - simply the inputs - what are our societal obligations to students? Is this something measured by standards, or could it be measured by money? For example, is it possible to financially quantify our obligation to students and say that we owe $12,000 of annual education to a student, or do we need to go further and guarantee that that $12,000 buys the child certain things?
     
  20. Tyler B.

    Tyler B. Devotee

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    If you believe that the most important task for a young person is to be "saved" by reading and believing in the lessons in the Bible or the Koran, then you will probably view school as an agent to save souls. This is an example of a different educational goal for a school.

    There are states that support such schools with tax-payer dollars, and it's a goal of the present powers that be to get this goal expanded to the other states in order to save as many souls as possible, even if academic progress is of secondary importance.

    BTW. Another term that you should avoid, is saying that anyone who is "pro public education" is "anti choice". The two are very different things. For example, speaking for myself, I'm completely fine with the existence of private schools as long as they don't accept public money. Someone can be pro public schools and pro choice.
     
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