EVERYONE, teachers, parents and students need to be held accountable. This is just another excuse for parents to blame the school system. What most people don't realize is that the test the child has to pass is as Basic Skills Test. In my state of Georgia, it is the CRCT; which I think is a joke! The children only have to achieve a 45% to Meet Expectations which is considered passing. This is the only test that you can actually fail and still "PASS." Raising children is a big responsibility, one that should not be entered into lightly. It is not up to others to teach your child everything. Children are entering school not knowing their alphabet. My child turned 2 five days ago, and he can already identify 15 letters. Read to your children! It makes a world of difference. Also.... stop pointing fingers at your teachers, they are overworked and underpaid, but their because they have a passion. IF your child has a bad teacher, it is YOUR responsibility as a parent to make-up for it. Report it to the schools, document, but take action with your child; not against the school!
I work as a teacher within my daughters' school district, however I teach at a different school. My dream would be that the funding issues be resolved. The DARE grant went away this year and we no longer have an afterschool tutoring grant. There are things I need for my classroom that I pay for out of my own pocket as there is no money from the school for it.
Standardized testing is the high risk thing that holds us all accountable. I teach at a low socio-economic school and the children that attend my school are definitely high risk children and often carry lots of baggage with them. Assessment by standardized testing is tough as not all students are the same. I am glad to see my state start measuring the actual growth a student makes and then making predictions on how successful that student would be in 5th grade.
Funding, funding, funding. A fantastic teacher is someone you want to keep at a school, so steps should be made to ensure that the salaries are worth it to the teacher. The out of pocket expenses should be tax deductible, so matter what, not based on a certain percentage, etc.
If there was one thing I could change in education it would be what drives the current decision making process. Instead of making decisions with the funding provided that would educate the whole child, many decisions are driven by test scores and local politics. We need people at the top that value education and the role it plays in society more than the dollar and popularity.
I am a new school mom.My daughter started kindergarten this year.I feel as parents we need to take the responsibility of raising our children.I chose a charter school and am very pleased.An obese child does not get fat with a school lunch.My daughter gets homework every day.It takes her 5 min. to do it.If it takes longer than obviously she needed the extra work.We don't own video games,I don't turn on the T.V. when we get home.I work full time and manage to have a wonderful smart child and I credit myself.All the influential people around her have definitely played a big role in her life.Of course I chose most of those people.I think we need to be blessed with the education our child recieves and stop blaming everyone else for our behavior.Parents are ahuge problem with the problems today.Take care of your child and everything else will fall in place.
Hmmm, one thing, a better way to test knowledge at the start of the year. I understand teachers' need to spend some time assessing where each child is, but seriously, this takes 6 WEEKS at most schools.
Tutoring places like Sullivan & Score can figure that out in 2-3 days, why can't we do that in schools?
It might mean a child having a bad day gets misclassified, but a good teacher (goes back to quality teaching I suppose) can figure that out.
I echo your sentiments for NJ. My husband works at the board level of a NJ school system and they are going through some serious downsizing/budget cuts. I am told that tenured teachers can be let go if their position is eliminated/downsized and that seniority is what protects the longer tenured teachers over the newer teachers such that someone who has longevity in the district will not be the first to go in a layoff. With all that said, I am not sure that the profession of teaching as a whole has necessarily attracted the best and the brightest. My concern is in the elementary levels where young girls need better math and science skills but the teachers did not excel in those areas themselves growing up and may need to approach these subjects differently for girls than for boys who generally have a higher aptitude for math/science.
I'm a former teacher and am currently getting my Master's in Education. In the program by eyes have been opened to what's really "wrong" with our schools. Our schools were set up with a military model and high stakes testing does nothing more than make our kids good test takers and not good thinkers. Our classrooms should be based around building community, student centered, the teacher really as a guide, and allowing kids to make mistakes and truly learn from those mistakes. Children should be assessed on far, far more than tests. Portfolios, group work, projects-those are the things that show us what a kid really knows. Our system needs a rehaul, No Child Left Behind needs to be thrown out, administrators and teachers need more training on how we really learn. If we could do this, kids would ace tests no problem and not because they were taught to the test but because they truly understand what they've learned. I also would have plenty of recess and physical activity and healthy eating as a part of their day!
Sedland, I've thought that ever since I attended High School (85-89). I'm amazed to hear anyone consider the same issues that always seem to take a back seat to temporary band-aid solutions. It's as though bureaucrats lack creativity, or is that a cliche'? Hehehehehehe.
In lieu of a badly needed overhaul the only thing I could suggest to help the current system would be smaller class sizes (i.e. more teachers). I think the advocates of 'no child left behind' would have had a much greater impact if they considered a mandatory class size limit rather than mandatory testing, which is probably an incurable matter of funding and, again, perhaps a lack of creativity on the part of bureaucracy. As complex as our government is I'm surprised anyone can get a cup of coffee in the morning but I wouldn't be surprised if the task wasn't outsourced to the local Starbucks.