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The Myths of the Education Crisis

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

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    Well, having read the article, can't really support most of his points. I agree it isn't the teacher's fault (mostly), kids can certainly get a good education out of public schools if they work at it. My daughter graduated from a small town public high school and went on to graduate from Harvard. No tutors, special classes, the only thing outside the school itself was a SAT study guide.

    But saying that graduation rates are up doesn't mean anything if the kids come out of high school unable to write a coherent paper or not knowing the science and history and whatnot they should. I've seen way to many functionally illiterate "high school graduates" to say that higher graduation rates mean anything. You ever watch JayWalk on the Tonight Show? Yeah, you forget a lot of this stuff after you get out of school, but way too many people never learn it in the first place.

    As for test scores being up, what does that mean when our students compare so badly to the rest of the world? Teaching to the test is not teaching, nor are they getting an education from it.

    As for poverty, I'm not really clear what his point was. Yes it's a problem, not just that they live in poverty and lack social services, but the schools are poorly supplied, and I know from experience that the best teachers and administrators will get skimmed off and sent to more prosperous schools. And it is most certainly an educational crisis, not a myth.
    1958 days ago
    The title of the article is misleading. The facts that he provides, while correct, are inadequate to represent the state of education in our great nation. 30. 40. and 50 years ago we provided the best educations of any nation in the world. Now, we rank 17th in several subjects. That's not improvement no matter how confidently the author says it. He's wrong on that.

    This is a report published by the current administration.

    To blame the situation on the teachers is ludicrous. The author is correct in that. The great majority of public school teachers do a great job and teachers don't set policy nor establish standards.

    The situation is a lot more complex than the author represented and as long a politicians keep messing with it the situation will only get worse.

    1959 days ago
    I don't know the details of the teacher's union struggles in Chicago.

    I do know that, in general, teachers are paid less than comparably educated and experienced professionals. My dad has two masters degrees, and spent over 30 years teaching public school. I make more now than he ever did in his life - even adjusted for inflation from the time he retired from teaching in 2005.

    And these are the people we depend on to shape the future of our country. These are the people preparing our future workforce. Our country doesn't grow if we don't value education and educators.
    1959 days ago

    Comment edited on: 9/12/2012 4:00:27 PM
    Couldn't open the article for some reason. I have to agree it's too easy for a lot of students. A young friend of my sister's was showing her a paper she got an A on (high school). Full of misspellings and unclear sentences, definitely not outstanding stuff. There was a lot of room for the teacher to coach the kid in how to make it better, but the only comment was 'Great!'.

    1959 days ago
  • RUSSELL_40
    I think this is the base of most problems in America. Education. Both of my parents dropped out of school to work on farms, and returned to get GED's. They were born in 42, and 43. My Dad got 8 patents, and was making $100 an hour as a consultant when he had his stroke. Back then, you could go from High School to make a wage to support your family. Now, without an education, you struggle to avoid poverty.

    My Dad talked my brother and I into not " wasting out time " with education. We worked at factories 84 hours a week, for $8 an hour, and felt rich. Then all the factories closed, I started working at a pizzeria, and then got sick. My brother just went back to college at 42. He makes so little, working part time, that he got a Pell grant to pay for his tuition.. Thanks for doubling that Obama! What will that do for him? Well, the average pay for a person with a Bachelor's degree is over 5X what he is making, and much easier to do, physically. He got a 35 on his ACT, and should have gone to college back then. His life would have been different. We were educated at a wonderful public school, which is now almost bankrupt. The teachers are being maligned, even though they make just 45K average.

    Many teachers have a Masters Degree. Other jobs requiring this would pay 80-120 K a year, but we complain if they want 60K. Teachers are underpaid, not overpaid. We need to invest in education, and continue to improve America, one person at a time. For just over $5000 a year, my brother can add 50K a year to his salary. Even at 10% taxes, he would pay the tuition back in 4 years. Education is a revenue enhancer. Having a bunch of minimum wage earners is not good for America. We should fund schools fully, appreciate teachers, and not think of education as a chore that we finish at 18. If so, the world will continue to pass us by.We should provide free college for 4 years at any community college.

    Sadly, here in MI, we now will not provide health care benefits for new teachers, and just a 401K, no retirement.It was called the " Teacher Bill ". If you were thinking of being a teacher here, you are thinking one of two things now. Switch career goals, or get a teaching degree, and leave MI. I always find it amazing that we send our children to school, entrusting their education to a teacher, but think that teacher is worthless. If so, why did you send your kid there?

    Tutor a child for a year, and tell me that teachers are overpaid. Not easy. I do agree that there are some bad teachers, but by %, a lot less bad teachers, than bad politicians. We don't cut the pay of politicians, or try to abolish Congress though.
    1959 days ago

    Comment edited on: 9/12/2012 11:56:15 AM
    I agree with you that not all teachers are terrific, Naolee. I agree that teachers teach to the test too. I think they do that because there is so much riding on that test, like the teacher's job. I have downloaded the article and will be interested to read it.
    1959 days ago
    Excellent article. I'm sick of all the teacher bashing that goes on. You couldn't PAY me enough to do that job. And we can't pay THEM enough half the time either.

    @NAOLEEE: "I think" and "I feel" expresses your subjective experiences, and that's perfectly fine, but the article speaks to the actual facts of the situation, not how we all perceive them. It did point out that there is still a substantial lag in Latino school perfomance, and you might be on the front lines of that issue. As it mentioned, there ARE schools that are failing, but there are many more that are improving year by year.
    1959 days ago
    Thanks for sharing this!
    1959 days ago
    Well I can't agree. My primary language is spanish. I see a lot of teachers writing wrong the words. Today the teacher give all the test to study at home. A lot of things I think is really bad now than when I was studying. When I was studying if I wrote a word wrong was 5 points out of the test for each wrong word . We had to study everything because we didn't know was coming in the test. (I never studied). If a student didn't do the homework; didn't have brake to play outside. (I had almost all the year in 4th grade inside the classroom w/out going outside to play because I never did a homework). I think today everything is too easy for the student and a lot of teachers don't know how to write and the student learn what the teacher write. This not only in Spanish. I see that in English, too. Too easy for the students and the students don't take serious the classes. I didn't studied; but I had A's and I learned all the grammatical we use in Spanish and I still using what I learned; but I see a lot of teachers that doesn't know to write and that go to the students because they do what the teacher is teaching. As I said; I see that in Spanish and English, too.
    1960 days ago
    THANK YOU!!! I am a Chicago Public School teacher and this message is being choked & smothered out of the media... PLEASE continue to spread the word.
    1960 days ago
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