This is so true

Discussion in 'General Education' started by schoolteacher, Jul 25, 2014.

  1. schoolteacher

    schoolteacher Habitué

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  3. ready2learn

    ready2learn Comrade

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    Interesting article. No textbooks is not the only reason though. In fact, the high poverty schools I taught in had more resources it seemed because they were high poverty. I will also add that I have always had textbooks but rarely use a textbook. I think I can find resources that often work better for me and my students than the problems the textbook provides.
     
  4. dgpiaffeteach

    dgpiaffeteach Aficionado

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    I agree with ready2learn. I've seen some high poverty schools that had every resource imaginable and then some.

    I think the problems go much deeper, especially with reading. It's amazing the difference between kids who were read to and kids who weren't. Some of the problems start long before they enter a classroom.
     
  5. KinderCowgirl

    KinderCowgirl Phenom

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    It's not just a matter of no textbooks. These schools are competing with schools who utilize textbooks made by the same writers of the test. That's why the author thinks there is an advantage. The language of the passages, etc is the same.

    Many places are even now going to digital textbooks which I think will make the divide even bigger. Schools don't have the technology budget to keep up with the wear and tear on devices, if they have enough devices.
     
  6. otterpop

    otterpop Aficionado

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    Short of changing the whole testing system, which I would support but don't see happening any time soon, a lot of this could be remedied by providing complete study guides for the tests. The new Smarter Balanced test is so secretive on what will be included, and no printable sample problems are even available.
     
  7. Go Blue!

    Go Blue! Connoisseur

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    I've said this before here and I will say it again: the vast majority of large, urban, inner-city districts are NOT broke or under-funded. They have the money, they have the funds, they have multi-million dollar budgets. Many of these districts receive not only local funds, but also state funding (which comes from other cities/districts) and federal money. Often, they receive more money than the suburbs because they are deemed needy. They can buy books and paper if they wanted to.

    So, the issue here is not a lack of funds but funds being mismanaged in various forms - from reckless overspending to district officials straight up stealing from the district. Trust me when I say many of TPTB in our large, urban cities/districts are lining their pockets at the expense of educating our kids. When you actually look at per-pupil-spending/funding, you will see that the money IS there but people at the BoEd are often spending and wasting money with little real oversight.

    Where I teach; yeah, we have do not have enough books and paper but that is not the cause of our low test scores especially at the secondary level. Other things are going on, especially when students enter MS and their ELEM test scores start sinking like a rock.
     
  8. Go Blue!

    Go Blue! Connoisseur

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    PREACH!!! Some high-poverty schools are always playing "catch up" because each year they get whole-classes worth of kids who are not on grade-level. ELEM teachers do the best they can, but by the time they get to us (secondary), we're lucky if a child is on grade-level. I praise the Lord when I get a MS child who's reading comprehension is on grade-level.

    Some people don't understand having to teach whole classes (not just 5-10 kids), but whole classes of kids performing more than 2 grade-levels below their current grade. Furthermore, some of these kids also give a lot of resistance to learning, especially once they get out of ELEM.
     
  9. iteachbx

    iteachbx Enthusiast

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    Right and just because you're entire class is below grade level doesn't mean "oh good I can teach to their level" you're spending the entire year trying to play catch up and teach them what their grade level peers across the country are learning. I had a class 2 years ago like this. It was so frustrating. All the textbooks and paper in the world wouldn't have fixed the problem.
     
  10. teacherintexas

    teacherintexas Maven

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    Absolutely. I highly suspect some of my former students were taught language skills from the television. Parental attitude towards education plays a part as well.

    It's not impossible to teach children who come from these backgrounds, but it is much harder. I've always thought teachers in poverty schools should receive a stipend.
     
  11. schoolteacher

    schoolteacher Habitué

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    I agree that the problems go much deeper. But what puzzled me is why some of my very bright students who worked hard and did well on classwork and assessments had a poor showing on the tests.

    After reading this article, I believe that students who have access to textbooks put out by companies who create the tests have an advantage. There are certainly other factors involved, but this is definitely a factor.
     
  12. Go Blue!

    Go Blue! Connoisseur

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    I am not saying this is what is going on in your classroom ...

    But, I have found that many of the students at my school who excel in the classroom on classwork and classroom assessments bomb the state's assessments or the SATs.

    I think what is going on in the classroom is not measuring up or aligning to the skills students need to excel on other types of assessments (not created by the teacher/school). I also think a lot of our "A" students - who work very hard and are so "bright" compared to their classmates - would be "C"/"D" students somewhere else due to differences in curriculum/rigor and competition.
     
  13. wldywall

    wldywall Connoisseur

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    When I taught at my last school, a poor Urban district with money issues (not as much as the neighboring district that is now bankrupt and being run by the state) there weren't enough textbooks. The psychology text was so old, I skipped chapters were information was outdated and dangerous. The history books for US history and World history at the high school were new, but the sets at the middle school were a few years old, required four textbooks to get through the years curriculum and there was enough for one and a half classes. The guy assigned to be my mentor screamed at me in front of students for not giving out books, instead keeping a class set, when he had promised parents there would be books to take home. I ordered them from central and had to wait weeks for them to search every book closet in the district to get me enough copies, of three of the four books. URGH!

    On top of that other resources were limited, paper, pencils, most of which I provided myself. I was required to have posters showing the main areas of citizenship (brain fart, cannot remember what they are called right now) and to teach the students before the MEAP tests, but I had to provide the materials on my own.

    Textbooks are an issue in poor urban districts, however the problem is so much bigger. I lost count of the number of students I had that were at one time SPED, but were no longer, but had NEVER been officially exited out of SPED, just one year they had an IEP, the next no IEP. Scary.

    Also from attending an urban school as a child and teaching in one, I noticed they tend to put students together in classes that never should be. The more experienced teachers, those with political clout get the good classes and the other teachers get all the nightmare kids, which dooms them all to failure.

    Its a complex problem which won't be solved by throwing money at it, but money helps.

    So would solving the rectal cranial inversion problem many district heads have. :D
     
  14. ykhoathuha

    ykhoathuha New Member

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    Jul 26, 2014

    It's not just a matter of no textbooks. These schools are competing with schools who utilize textbooks made by the same writers of the test. That's why the author thinks there is an advantage. The language of the passages, etc is the same.
     

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