At 2/2/07 05:21 PM, Camarohusky wrote:
You miss the other side of that equation. They place importance on it, so not only do they try to make the education system better, the society pushes students to succeed, because society find education valuable. Whereas here, in America, we don't care for education, so even the best teachers fight an uphill battle, where a below average teacher in America would be able to teach of Japanese student. Learn is a two way street. teachers, no matter how good they are, cannot do it alone. Good teachers can make it easier for the student, and poor teachers make it harder, but the student MUST try. That's the problem with American education. It is unimportant in the eyes of society.
Thanks for pretty much restating what I said, with a little more emphasis. lol
I don't agree with you there. Although the movie made a complete ass of itself and said that money is unimportant, they were right in that money is NOT the solution. Schools do need money to keep good teachers, to keep proper equipment, extra-cirricular activities, upper level classes and such. However, lack of money is not the root of the problem, it's the students' apathy toward school. This movie acts as if every student wants to learn, which I know is complete shit.
When I went to high school, I had the same problems as all of those other high schools. Very little discipline, boring teachers, a hate for school, and students just doing what they wanted, yet we had high test scores and 80% of my class graduated with 50% going to college. I know those numbers are not stellar, but they are in now way a problem. The problem with the school wasn't the teachers. It was the students. Many students were too doped up to function properly. Other students just didn't come to school. There were students who came just because they had, and then left. I know some students whos parents forced them to work and got mad when they studied. It's really hard to get through to a student who doesn't care.
We all know that learning is a two way street and blah blah blah. Yet I still find lack of funding a HUGE part of the problem.
There are a lot of teachers who hate their jobs (and often don't want to teach) because they aren't being paid anywhere near what they should be. In most areas, it's impossible to find a person to put in a teaching position because costs of living are going up, and teacher salaries are staying the same. Makes it kind of hard for a person to make a living off this, and makes the job of teaching very unappealing.
So now we have those few dedicated individuals who would teach for 10 cents a day applying for jobs because they just want to make that difference and pass on what they know. God bless these teachers, because they very much stand alone. With the lack of appeal in the field of teaching, and the lack of funds to pay and hrie new teachers, those few dedicated, hardworking, inspired teachers we do have are teaching in classrooms that have upwards of 30+ kids. And in some schools, these wonderful teachers have 6 classes a day, so 30 x 6 is an average of 180 students per teacher (this all does of course vary on the schools size, this is how my school was).
So now these teachers have to manage classes of 30 kids, for very little pay, in a district where cost of living is sometimes higher, or almost par with what they make. Not very attractive for aspiring teachers now is it? I know it isn't for me. And like you said, there are students who absolutely hate school and never try, which very understandably could put hopelessness into the teacher that no matter what they do, they just can't reach the students they're trying to inspire. In some schools, like one a friend of mine works in, the students all have personal vendettas against the teachers for no reason. Which now brings me to...the students.
What is the most appealing part of high school? For many people, it's the social life and extras that make the time pass. If your high school offers you the opportunity to join clubs or teams or whatever for something you LOVE TO DO (like dance or skateboarding) then kids tend to like school a little more. It gives the students more reason to get involved in their school. Even being part of a little club that meets once a month can create certain bonds between students and the teachers that help run the activity.
Then, if you have more money from funding, you can hire more teachers. When you have an abundance of highly qualified people who are fighting for teaching jobs because they're attractive positions with good pay and benefits, then you can reduce the class sizes. Reducing class sizes give the teachers more one on one time with the students and can allow more personal relationships to develop. The more personal the relationships, the better chance that the students will like their teachers. The better the chance that the students like their teachers, the more willing the students will be to learn. Also, the smaller the class sizes are, the more hands on activities the teachers can do with their students (Which is also another beautiful part of more funding, they can afford to buy more materials to do hands on activities for those visual learners.)
Furthermore, that $9,000 a student fact is quite spurious. The normal avergae student costs maybe around $5,000. It's all of the special cases that drive that average up. The special students cost $50,000+ a piece. The near drop outs cost an extra 2k or so for the school to do what it can just to keep them there to graduate.
The average amount of money spent on students should be much higher than $9,000. Compared to other places, that's being cheap.