The MISEDUCATION of The American Student.. PT I

Posted: February 28, 2012 by Puff in Education
Tags: , , , , , , ,

After doing my previous post, many things about education were flowing through my head.  I really started thinking about the American educational system, both the positives and negatives, and I realized we are fighting a losing battle.  Our youth are being set up for failure early and often,  and it appears the country does not seem too bothered.  I remember growing up, hearing the stories that a public school education is inferior to that of a private school, I completely agree with this more so today then back in the 90’s.  Speaking on personal experience as a person whom attended public and private schools through different stages of education, I believe my best learning experiences came from the times when I attended public schools.  My elementary and high school were great examples of when I felt my public school education was far superior to anything remotely close from a private school.  Some may argue the point that both places were ranked in the top amongst the city during my times there, which is very justified. However that does not negate the fact that my public school education served me well during my encounters in those environments.  Fast forward to 2012 and take a look in the educational system.  There are more holes and questions than missing a bad Wayne Brady joke.

As I take a small look into the American educational system, I begin to wonder who should be at the other end of this finger I point so strongly. Do I blame the teachers, the parents, the students, somebody else??  After thinking long and hard, I realize why limit it to just one entity, everybody involved deserves some of this recognition for perpetuating ignorance.  For starters, something that has bothered me since forever is the NO CHILD LEFT BEHIND policy.  This policy started back in 2001, with the intent of improving the public school system.  The NCLB policy is based on the notion of setting high standards and establishing obtainable goals that can improve individual outcomes in education. The Act requires every state to develop assessments in basic skills to be given to  students in certain grades, in order for states to receive federal funding for schools. The Act does not enforce a national achievement standard; standards are set by each individual state.  Now what does this mean to the everyday person? Basically the government has created a system on top of another system. The Act was supposed to be designed to improve the quality of education for many minorities in a public school setting, but the more I continue to search for answers, the more I find out all things point back to NCLB.  The act requires all government-run schools receiving federal funding to administer a state-wide evaluation every year to all students.  The scores determine if the school has taught the students well.  After several failed attempts the school is handed over to outside sources to improve the conditions.  The dilemma that schools became faced with, was that teachers were teaching for the test, not for the intent to learn.  Most things students learn, are stored in their long term memory.  Short term gratification has become a thing of the present. Vital information gets lost through this process.

It is now 2012, which means the act has been in place for well over 10 years.  Just walk with me for a second, think about how much things have evolved in a decade.  Look on the different obstacles you have overcome, the concepts you have learned and mastered, the technological advances. I mean we went from the start of two pagers to walking around with tablets. We are literally walking around with computers on our hips, and that is accepted as the norm.  A decade ago the financial world was in great standings, only lames didn’t have a job.  Now people with masters’ are struggling to find a job, let alone keep a great one.  My point is things change drastically in a decade.  Give or take a couple of years, but a decade is pretty much the most important times of your educational foundation.  The normal kid starts school at about 5.  After a decade of poor education where does that put the student, fresh in high school, more confused than the face of Tiger Woods ex-wife.  As that student continues through high school, more education is lost.  Students get awarded titles like “problematic”, and placed into situations where success is minimal.

School system’s tend to over look the notion that many students are not given a fighting opportunity to become educated.  As my co-blogger and I thought back about our education, we realized that many subjects we are forced to take, did not make much sense. It was only in instructional situations, where teachers made conscious efforts to relate material to everyday life, where we both felt we flourished.  Many teachers did not/ do not know how to relate with many students in their inner city or “urban” classrooms.  With that being said students are already at a disadvantage;  because they may not understand the material, and can not find a reason to want to understand.  Now you have a student who is crying out for attention, and will do so in other facets.  Teachers tend to label students in order to maintain proper control of the classroom.  As a person who works in the educational field, I truly believe that students should not always get labeled as problematic.  We as a people need to work on educating our youth more effectively. Educating our youth more effectively, sounds like an enigma that even the greatest of minds could not figure out.  I plan to come up with some ideas that can assist everyone in getting our y0uth to that next level. Stay tuned for the next portion of this article.  Until then read up on the NCLB act to find out what is really going in today’s school system.

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Comments
  1. Jay_0914 says:

    I am Jessica’s sister and I agree with you on a lot of places; however, learning starts at the home so teachers should not be blamed for what is going on. As you know in many states teachers no longer are unionized or the right to protest has been taking away, which means that the “powers that be” make the decisions. Keeping working to educate our youth because somebody has to do the job…..Soon to be Teacher of the Century.

    • Onlypuff says:

      I do not deny the fact that learning starts at home, I actually plan on discussing that in the second portion of this post. My concern however, is with teachers who do not take the opportunity to reach youth. Many times youth are left in the wind due to ‘some’ teachers lack of understanding of that student.In my current situation I work with students in high school, many of whom still under a 6th grade reading level. In my eyes EVERYONE is to blame, teachers, schools, parents, students and yes powers that be; that is unacceptable to me.

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