Ready or not . . .

Discussion in 'General Education' started by Been There, Feb 5, 2018.

  1. Been There

    Been There Companion

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    Feb 5, 2018

    I recently came across some projected demographic figures released by the U.S. Census Bureau that was part of an ad campaign promoting Mexican beer sales. As you probably already know, the fast-growing Hispanic population in the U.S. is having a profound effect on many urban schools. While some of you may be experiencing the side-effects of this unprecedented change in your own classrooms, others who are entering the workforce will need to be prepared for the dramatic demographic shift that is yet to come.

    What are your thoughts about the instructional challenges that will face teachers in the future and what preparations do you think should be made before it's too late? Will being bilingual in Spanish become a standard requirement for teaching positions? Please refrain from submitting your political views to avoid being censored.
     
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2018
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  3. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Feb 5, 2018

    If the graph is online, it should be easy to cite the webpage if nothing else. Do so, please.
     
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  4. Leaborb192

    Leaborb192 Connoisseur

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    I honestly don't even know what "teaching'' or schools will even look like by that time. I fear that public schools WILL be (as they already are) broken up and a lot of instruction will take place online. The teaching shortage is just the tip of the iceberg in a dramatic change of the teaching profession. Teachers will continue to come and go and then the decision makers will slowly realize that they're not even needed anymore. People already don't respect teachers or school as an institution anymore... we'll see its erosion in the future. People walking around will be brown speaking Spanish and black as those groups will become the majority population, but you'll see a lot of "CLOSED" signs on the vacant buildings that were once the public schools. It's sad, but I fear that it will be what happens.
    :cry:
     
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  5. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Phenom

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    My district is 99.98% white. And that 0.02% non-white is a combination of Hispanic, black, and Asian or mixed race. We don't even have an ESL program because all of the non-white students that we have are native English speakers.
     
  6. miss-m

    miss-m Habitué

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    My school is predominantly Hispanic, Asian, and Black... and the immigrant students are the LEAST of the behavior issues. Their parents are the most involved, or as involved as they feel they can be without speaking English. Many of my students are probably from families that are here illegally. That’s actually the first thing a lot of people ask me about when I tell them where I work, and I feel a little angry that a child’s immigration status is the first thing people worry about. Not the fact that their families are in poverty or that they’ve likely experienced some form of trauma in their life, no. Just “do you have a lot of illegals?” I have a lot of students. I don’t care about their documentation.

    Sorry, off topic. My point is that those kids are not the ones with behavior problems. They aren’t the ones whose mothers call and yell over the phone.
     
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  7. Been There

    Been There Companion

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    All I have is a snippet from a beer ad that was emailed to me - the following citation was for a graph from the U.S. Census Bureau. If it doesn't pass muster, feel free to delete the thread.

    Source: U.S. Census Bureau (1990, 2000, 2010 population by race alone and Latino origin; 2014 population projection) & DailyMail (UK); Nielsen The Multicultural Super Consumer, March 2015 report

    BTW, I would like to encourage everyone to remain on topic as much as possible. I was actually curious to hear what others thought about the challenges in the classroom that are yet to come and how they might be met.
     
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2018
  8. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Phenom

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    As I mentioned earlier, my school is almost 100% white and all English speaking.

    I can still address your last question. The biggest challenge we are going to face in the future is likely to be poverty.

    I know this because that is a huge issue now. It was a huge issue when I was a student at the same school in the early 80's. It is actually worse now because two of the biggest job suppliers in the county are gone now. Nothing has replaced them. Multi-generational poverty.

    Race and immigration status play zero part in that here.
     
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  9. DobbyChatt

    DobbyChatt Rookie

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    Like you, their immigration status is not a concern of mine. However, at my school, many are serious behavior issues. I'm just stating the facts of my school.
     
  10. CherryOak

    CherryOak Companion

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    According to Table 11 of the US Census Bureau's 2014 population projections, the Hispanic portion of the US population in 2060 will be 28.56%.

    Perhaps someone initially read about growth/increase percentages and equated them to population percentages. ?

    Eh, I'm certain education will be very different by then in many ways, but I bet us humans will be teaching other humans just fine.
     
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  11. Mshope2012

    Mshope2012 Companion

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    We have no immigrants or foreign students at all.

    However, poverty is growing in our area. Just in the time I have been at my school our poverty rate has almost doubled. In addition, our student population has gone down. This is very challenging.

    I've taught online before and I don't see this being a great solution for all students. It's hard enough to keep kids engaged in the brick and mortar school. In an online environment, the struggling students just wouldn't log on. I don't know what the solution is.
     
  12. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Feb 5, 2018

    But the first thing you mentioned in your earlier post was the "illegals". I think that viewing undocumented students as "illegals" is a terrible mindset to have and likely colors your interactions with them.

    As to the question at hand, I don't really think that an influx of hispanic students will impact our education system very much. There may be a greater focus on TESL strategies, but those strategies are really just good teaching strategies and should probably be part of any classroom already. And I do feel the need to point out that a student can be both hispanic and English-speaking. Not every kid whose last name is Ortiz can speak Spanish.
     
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  13. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    "On topic" does legitimately include questioning not only whether a touted trend is troubling but whether the numbers that are alleged to point to that trend do in fact bear up under scrutiny. I notice that you've deleted the "graph" (technically, chart or table) that showed the figures that had you concerned. What I recall in that table was percentages that purported to present an astronomical rise for one demographic in population growth - but without specifying the original population. Why is this a problem? Consider this: I knew an engineer and his wife who were both naturalized US citizens from Russia; they spoke both Russian and English with their two daughters, and if they'd had a third child two years before the next decennial census, that would have meant a 25% increase in native speakers of Russian in their neighborhood, though Russian speakers as a percentage of the total population of the neighborhood would almost certainly have been unchanged. For percentage change, as I'm sure you know, subtract the basis number from the new number and divide the result by the basis number. (5-4)/4 = .25 = 25%. But if 4000 people live in the neighborhood, 4/4000 is just 0.01% of the population and 5/4001 is just 0.0125%: much less striking, no?

    As with the raisin-bran ads of the 1960s, citing "25% more" when it isn't made clear exactly what the basis of comparison is exhibits either ignorance of basic statistics or a willingness to misuse statistics in order to persuade people to buy or buy into something. In the case of this table, I'm sorry to say that I have to guess the latter: someone pulled that table together with intent to agitate and frighten people and saw to it that it would reach the hands that eventually got it into your email feed.
     
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  14. Been There

    Been There Companion

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    Feb 6, 2018

    After reading a few of the responses to my post, I realized that the "statistics" from a beer ad may not have been the most reliable nor were they really necessary to stimulate a discussion about the changing demographics that are taking place in our country, so I decided it would be best to delete them. In fact, I just now tried to do a search of the source that was apparently from the U.S. Census Bureau and came up empty-handed! So, TeacherGroupie was right to question the validity of the numbers.

    I was actually hoping to receive responses from teachers like DobbyChatt who face mounting challenges related to the current demographic changes. Caesar753 provides an exemplar of someone who is able to acknowledge the difference perspectives of an issue. Unfortunately, teachers like DobbyChatt with first-hand experience are often reluctant to speak openly about the unique instructional challenges in their schools - I can now see why. It's probably better to avoid such loaded topics.
     
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2018
  15. Obadiah

    Obadiah Devotee

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    I have been greatly concerned about the downward shift in attitudes among various races and cultures. The attitude seems to be, "No, I'm not prejudice, but...." The attitude seems to be, "I'm [just] tolerant."

    When I was a teenager, the songs were, "Everybody's beautiful, in their own way...," and "Think of your fellowman, lend him a helping hand. Put a little love in your heart."
    Later on, "Ebony and Ivory lived together in perfect harmony side by side on my piano keyboard, Oh, Lord, why can't we?"
     
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