Wednesday, October 31, 2012

American Government 10/30/12

In Class - Continue discussing "Stupid in America." 

Video Group Project: You are to create a 30-60 second campaign commercial.  You can either support a candidate, proposition, or simply encourage people to get out and vote.  Groups can be no larger than five (5) people per group.  Everyone must make an appearance in the video.  Grading will be pass/fail with the winning video from each class will get lunch on Mr. Palo.  Finally, each group member will grade their group members on a variety of criteria, so in a nutshell, do your part.  This project is due on Tuesday, November 6.

QOW - Continuing our discussion on education, do some outside research (minimum of 2 sources), and include an MLA works cited.  This is due on Monday, November 5 by 11:59 pm.

We've examined education from a variety of perspectives thus far.  Using specific evidence to support your answer, what changes need to be made to the public education system of the United States?  Topics to consider while writing your response:

No Child Left Behind (NCLB); achievement gap; money in education; educational standards; roles of teachers, parents, and students; preparing students for college/career; choice in where student's go to school; evaluations for teachers/students; role of teacher unions; role of government.


Walking Talking Stephen Hawking said...

I believe that the heavy focus on standardized testing in education is one of America's biggest problems. Right teachers all over the nation are stuck "teaching to the test". Any topic that will be in a test is worth teaching, while topics that aren't tested on are ignored. Many teachers would like to teach differently, but since the success of their schools depend on test scores, they have to prioritize on achieving the highest scores possible. The problem in standardized tests is that they only test a narrow set of skills and knowledge. Classes end up revolving around these narrow skills. Many students are no longer concerned with how think creatively, but instead think about how to work efficiently to get the highest test scores. This is most common with writing tests. I know from first hand experience. I took an SAT class and my teacher taught me that for the writing portion of the test, one should never spend time even fully reading the prompt. He taught us that we should not spend time trying to think creatively, and that we had to focus on pumping out an efficient 5-paragraph high-scoring essay in under 25 minutes. 25 minutes to write an essay! Ridiculous. Students spend all their time learning how to ace a test, and once that test is over, the information they learned doesn't need to be retained anymore. It's useless. Forget about it.

Henion, Andy. "Standardized Testing Hurting U.S. Education, New Book Contends." Michigan State University, 01 Sept. 2009. Web. 01 Nov. 2012. .

"How Standardized Testing Damages Education." The National Center for Fair & Open Testing, 20 Aug. 2007. Web. 01 Nov. 2012. .

Walking Talking Stephen Hawking said...

^ I'm Dennis Bi from 4th period by the way

Gage Ribeiro said...

The public education system of the United States is the epitome of mediocrity. While supposedly no child is left behind, the truth is that only a reasonable portion of children are left behind, while the rest go on to be given gold stars for creativity rather than intelligence. As the achievement gap increases, educators continue to plead for an increase in funding. The roles of teachers, parents, and students are in confusion due to the over-generalization of education. The government has tried time and time again to fix this issue, yet results are yet to be found.

Gage Ribeiro said...

The No Child Left Behind Act implemented by President Bush has led to a dramatic emphasis on test scores, but the education system of America has seen a downward spiral. Liberals hate the act for its standardization qualities, conservatives see it as an "overreach of federal power (USA Today)," and it is unpopular among educators and parents for the very fact that it "exposes the failure of adults in the lives of children (Washington Post)." According to Michael Gerson of the Washington Post, "the bipartisan response of many governors, educators and legislators is to excuse the adults." President Obama himself has offered exemptions to more than half of the United States “if they agree to redesign how they assess and retain teachers.” Mitt Romney supports a reformation and reauthorization of NCLB, and if elected, would most likely reevaluate Obama’s legislation. The act is a perfect example a federal government failure in that it puts excessive pressure on educators, who stress parents are not doing their job, who in turn see the student as the problem. The problem is that no one wants to take responsibility for the problem itself, and the act should either be majorly reformed or completely removed from legislation. Gerson states that, “There is room for improvement in NCLB — some adjustments in standards, but mainly to make them more uniform and rigorous.”

Gage Ribeiro said...

A newer, revamped standardized system known as the Common Core has been pushed by President Obama, aside from thwarting efforts of Conservatives who call it “a federal takeover of curriculum.” The initiative’s site includes “Preparing America’s Students for College and Career” as part of the title. “The Common Core State Standards provide a consistent, clear understanding of what students are expected to learn, so teachers and parents know what they need to do to help them. The standards are designed to be robust and relevant to the real world, reflecting the knowledge and skills that our young people need for success in college and careers. With American students fully prepared for the future, our communities will be best positioned to compete successfully in the global economy.” The mission statement of the Common Core is quite lengthy, but is not what it says agreeable? Standards would be clear. Roles of those within the program would be clearly defined. Curriculum would be related to reality. Students would be prepared for success, thus becoming successful individuals. This type of reform is needed in education, because if no one is thinking critically, are they really thinking at all?

Gage Ribeiro said...

Early childhood education must also be addressed, as the youth of America are crucial to the development of the nation as a whole. Romney and other Republicans argue that states should take control of this type of education calling it “more [of] a social experience, not preparing children for school (USA Today).” President Obama has pushed for the reform of Head Start, announcing “that underperforming local programs must compete with other providers for federal funding (USA Today).” This type of competition is healthy within education, as it pushes everyone involved to be the best they can be. If students, teachers, and parents all had to compete, the system would make a complete turn. As those affected would make a combined effort towards bettering education, the achievement gap would close. Because more and more students would take their education seriously, they would be more prepared for college and careers. Evaluation of teachers and students would come in the form of how well America is doing as a nation, along with the support of parents. Teacher unions would strive to come together in not the generalization of standards or tests, but in the hope of providing the core to the betterment of America and its students.

Gage Ribeiro said...

With more choices and less of a reason to choose otherwise, public education would exemplify American values at their best. Hard work, determination, rigor, and success – these are what need to increase, not test scores or the role of the federal government. A reformation is needed indefinitely, and if changes like these occur, the public education system of the United States will prove to be resilient.

Works Cited
Gerson, Michael. “The quiet overturn of No Child Left Behind.” WP: Opinions. The Washington Post, 19 July 2012. Web. 1 November 2012.
Toppo, Greg. “Obama, Romney have different views on education.” USA Today: News. USA Today, 17 October 2012. Web. 1 November 2012.
“Mission Statement.” Home. Common Core State Standards Initiative, 2012. Web. 1 November 2012.

Ira Santos said...

“No matter how one parses it, the education system in the United States is broken, it is beyond repair in its current design.” No matter how much money is pumped into building new facilities and taking care of “student necessities,” tax payers continue to witness a steady decline in most public schools. One of the reasons for this is due to the large influx of students who immigrated to the United States who only speak a language other than English. According to Terrell, “teachers are overwhelmed and have been blamed for everything that goes wrong with a student; they have become a scapegoat for low test scores even though they may have five or six ethnic groups in a single classroom, all speaking different languages.” This has become evident in cities with a large cultural diversity. In order to fix these issues, students should be taught in environments where they can learn based on their ability. For the case of these students, they should be placed in a separate school that teaches English as a second language while incorporating lessons that are taught by regular schools. This system allows the student to gradually be simulated with other students who speak fluent English.
Perhaps the largest flawed constituent of America’s education system is the No Child Left Behind program. According to Chris Hedges, education is a corporate run system in which students are taught based on standardized tests instead of emphasizing on critical thinking and literacy. Teachers are solely evaluated based on student’s test scores. They reward teachers whose students do well on bubbled tests whereas teachers whose students have lower test scores are often disregarded. Therefore teachers who have the “capacity to inspire children to think [and] help the young discover their gifts and potential” are subdued to narrowing their lessons based on standardized test scores. The system makes it very easy to blame teachers for their students’ low test scores. Students are then left with a “tunnel vision” of knowledge in which most of the information they learn are thrown out of the window after exams. What makes this program flawed is the fact that this education system only favors a small group of students. These students are rewarded to master concepts, memorize formulas and obey the rules – enough “perform basic functions and service jobs” in the future. Students who are independent thinkers, artists and rebels are often disregarded.
“Schools are not delivering, and no amount of tax dollars will fix a broken system without some measure of rehabilitation.”

Works Cited
Hedges, Chris. "Why the United States Is Destroying Its Education System." Truthdig. Zuade Kaufman., 11 Apr. 2011. Web. 03 Nov. 2012.
Terrell, Dossie M. "Ideas for Improving the United States Education System." Helium. Hulium Inc., 21 May 2009. Web. 3 Nov. 2012.

Kurby Schneider said...

No child left behind was a great idea in theory allowing the public to see were the schools are failing, but we don’t need someone to tell us were the problem is, we can see it. We need to know how to fix this problem. Under education secretary Arne Duncan intends to raze the teacher qualifications and academic standards, out of the 95,000 schools in the counter 6,000 are considered for restructuring. $3 billion under the stimulus law to help these schools but is it worth it?
The new standard of education “The Common Core standard” was updated 8/30/12 yet I was not told of any differences when I was told about this I didn’t know it was in effect, or is it the website I went to said it was “UPDATED” if it is not up when will it be in effect and what immediate changes will there be? And how many changes? When I find out I will let you know.
"Content Standards." - Standards & Frameworks (CA Dept of Education). N.p., n.d. Web. 04 Nov. 2012. .
Young, Nancy L. "Categories." Changes Needed in Our Education System. N.p., n.d. Web. 04 Nov. 2012. .

carlos garcia said...

"We all like school teachers. It's a wonderful thing.… But hiring school teachers is not going to raise the growth of the U.S. economy." as Mitt Romney said. As anything i think that education and teachers can change the economy. Some students say that education is just a wast of time. Its really not, " I don't like the fact that there is recuse and P.E at our school, its gives us less time to work." a ten year old at Collett Elementary School. I think thats true, most schools don't give there 100% on education. There has been many debates on changing the education in the U.S.
More money for Education? I think no, the schools nowadays really could just need money for teachers and textbooks alone. Yes an ipad or computer can come in great use, but needing a new gym or an indoor trackfield is really unethical. " I am dedicating the majority of my wealth to improving education. It is the key to the survival of the human race," George lucas said in a statement. "We have to plan for our collective future—and the first step begins with social, emotional, and intellectual tools we provide to our children. As humans, our greatest tool for survival is our ability to think and to adapt—as educators, storytellers, and communicators our responsibility is to continue to do so.” George Lucas is dedicating him self to donate 4 million dollars to education.

Work Cited
Gregory Wallace "Obama ad focuses on education", October 19th 2012, Sun. Nov. 4 2012

George Lucas "Disney money will go toward education", Nov. 1 2012, Nov. 4 2012

Roseanna Lara said...

The changes I think need to be made in our United stated education system is that our way of teaching students today, is old school literally. The district pushes forward that we have to excel in our school subjects, but yet we (students) find reading textbooks very boring, honestly. In elementary school was always so fun, and we loved to learn and read. Now as we grow older, reading textbooks isn’t how we like to learn. The information in the books does not process in our brain, sadly to say. An article form “” said this, ‘The same students who continue to show limited interest in learning academics demonstrate great skills and confidence in creating new concepts. Creating the new motivate technicians whereas mastering the old does not.” This is true, because we’re entering the technological age and the industrial age is now gone Sometimes changes is good, and others can benefit and learn from new ways of teaching. I think our schools should stringly push for the students to use technology to help students learn more efficently.

Webb, Captain Bob. “Fast Changing Technology”. 2000, 2009 by Robert L. Webb. Web. 04 November 2012.

“Helping Kids Cross the Digitakl Divide”. 2012 Cable News Network. Tuner Broadcasting System, Inc. Web. 04 November 2012.

Berrylov3101 said...

It is said and done that there is no way of rebuilding our education system in America. The "No Child Left Behind" was at most no help to better us children. We are all should be granted the right to think broadly of things and find new ways of solving problems and have new methods to teach a child how to understand reading and writing. We should be more then just a test score and have are minds be somewhere then stuck in a crowded class room with no room to think. Some of the most best and smartest people in history never set foot into school or even a classroom and were basically home schooled and studied bible based material. Now us Americans dont have such luxury to put our children in home schooling or private teachings. It seems that we are being taught little and certaintly dont go into detail of things and never really ask questions into why not? Some teachers dont teach freely on how they think students should be taught. Schools now seems like a prison, and our classrooms are like a cell, and us students just a gpa and test numbers.

Weingarten,Randi. "Picking Up the Pieces of No Child Left Behind." Atlantic.Edgecast Networks,9 April
2012.Web. 04 November 2012.

Andrews,Rob."How To Rebuild No Child Left Behind."Atlantic.Edgecast Networks,11 April 2012.Web. 04 November 2012

stephanie :) said...

The public education system in the United States has to be changed. What exactly needs to be changed?... is probably everything. Now we all know that can't happen because it will end up taking forever. The No Child Left Behind act(NCLB) "affects what students are taught, the tests they take, the training of their teachers and the way money is spent on education" (greatschools staff) If this act is basically affecting the way we are taught then what exactly is the point of going to school. We are taught to read and write, but what is the point of taking all these tests. In that one video we watched in class with the doodle drawing it says that as we get older our testing scores are going down. Aren't they suppose to be going up? Now does that mean we need to be asked easier questions like the ones we were taught in 2nd grade or should we (the Students) actually start caring about our education. To another point we actually really shouldn't care that much about our education if teachers are going to feel bad and tell us were right instead of wrong when we get "2+2=5". I mean that if there going to actually tell us that were right to everything how are we suppose to learn. At a high school graduation a english teacher basically just put it out there that everysingle student graduating is not special, he stated "No, commencement is life’s great ceremonial beginning, with its own attendant and highly appropriate symbolism. Fitting, for example, for this auspicious rite of passage, is where we find ourselves this afternoon, the venue. Normally, I avoid cliches like the plague, wouldn’t touch them with a ten-foot pole, but here we are on a literal level playing field. That matters. That says something. And your ceremonial costume... shapeless, uniform, one-size-fits-all. Whether male or female, tall or short, scholar or slacker, spray-tanned prom queen or intergalactic X-Box assassin, each of you is dressed, you’ll notice, exactly the same. And your diploma... but for your name, exactly the same.

All of this is as it should be, because none of you is special.

You are not special. You are not exceptional."

When I finished reading his speech I was shhocked but he is right about everything he says. Now if we are all taught the same and being told the same why is it that only some students excel in school. Now thats when he also says" No longer is it how you play the game, no longer is it even whether you win or lose, or learn or grow, or enjoy yourself doing it... Now it’s “So what does this get me?"

That was a great point he said because that is how every student thinks.
I just personally think the way our education system is now is just extremely stupid.
We are tested on random questions we don't even know because we haven't even been close to learning that yet. Do they expect us to randomly know it from the top of our heads? Thats why theres school so we can be taught these things but if teachers are not going to care, if the district is not going to care, if the governmetn is not going to care, why should we even keep trying?
Me, personally I keep trying because I want to be someone when I get older but now if you finish high school, get a diploma, go to college, get your Masters Degree you are still not guarenteed a job. So What is the point of going though all these years of education if we are not getting what we were promised when we were little?

"What the No Child Left Behind law means to your child?". GreatSchools, Inc. 1020 San Francisco. Web. 04 Nov. 2012

McCullough, David. "David McCullough Jr.'s commencement address: You're Not Special." Boston Herald and Herald Media, 07 June 2012. Web. 04 Nov 2012

stephanie :) said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
SierraSenio said...

To begin with, I believe that Education should not suffer from the budget cuts. The Education System should not experience money being taken away. Instead, more money should be invested. There are many other solutions in improving the Education System, but I think the way to start is money. Money may not be the absolute solution, but it does help any situation. Money alone may not be the answer, a more adequate allocation of financial inputs to schooling can improve many things. Money can open many doors for improvements in the education. More money makes things available for students like providing books, computers and the ability to hire more teachers and allow teachers to keep their jobs. More teachers lead to smaller class sizes and smaller class sizes ables a teacher to focus more on the less amount of students and for the students to learn better. Also, teachers should be paid more. They do not get the credit for what they do. If teachers were paid more, maybe some of them would start to teach better and do a better job. If the teachers are happy, then the students are happy, and if the students are happy, the parents are happy. The parents are happy knowing their tax money is being spent on something good, their children's education.Parents, among the many who pay taxes, should know and even decide where their money goes. The people should also have a role in education other than only the government.

Carey, Kevin. "Money Matters." 26 April 2006. Web. 05 November 2012

"Does Money Matter in Education." AlbertShankerInstitute,January 2012. Web. 05 November 2012

MyGoodSir said...

The problem with public education today is that it's an outdated system. Everyday we have the leading minds of science and philosophy telling us to learn how to think, but public education promotes the opposite. They teach us what to think but never how to think. They come up with questions that cleverly insert ideas into our head. A question such as, "Do you believe humans have stopped evolving?" I have no problem with scientific questions regarding the theory of evolution but they make it so that we need to accept that ideology. You might as well right in the answer box, "Have you stopped beating your wife?"

There's a difference between having knowledge and being smart. Being smart is having the capability to look at things differently, understand it, and to conjure up some clever wit. Knowledge is just knowing things. We've entered a stage in life where in an attempt to become reasonable we have become irrational. One of the ways to test your reasoning skills is through the SAT test. It's a test of logic and the questions aren't really hard. We're so accustomed to the kind of math school teaches us. We have the urge to follow certain steps and formulas. But no, this isn't the case with the SAT. There is no certain way to do a problem. If we all changed our thinking, the SAT should be no problem.

Changing the public education system will probably never happen. I think we ourselves have an obligatory duty to take the first few steps of the scientific method: observation, question, and hypothesis. If you question the world around you, you will find the answers.

Sources that influenced my opinion

Hogan, Michael. "Critical Thinking and Real-World Outcomes." Psychologytoday. N.p., 27 Oct. 2012. Web. 05 Nov. 2012.

Winch, Guy. "Should Homework Be Abolished?" Psychologytoday. N.p., 18 Oct. 2012. Web. 05 Nov. 2012.

Jessica Soria said...

Ten years ago today, President Bush signed a bill called the No Child Left Behind Act. This law has improved American education in some ways, but it also still has its flaws that need to be fixed. No Child Left Behind (NCLB) has made discussions heated about achievement gaps and on how to close them. The law has held schools accountable for the performance of all students no matter their race, income level, English-proficiency or disability. Schools can no longer point to average scores while they’re hiding an achievement gap that is unacceptable and unsustainable economically wise. Although NCLB have their own significant flaws as well. It made an artificial goal of proficiency that encouraged states to set low standards to make it easier for students to meet their goals. The act’s emphasis on test scores as the primary measure of school performance has narrowed the curriculum, and has mislabeled schools as failures even if their students are demonstrating real academic growth. The law is overly prescriptive and doesn’t allow districts to create improvement plans based on their unique needs. It also has not supported states as they create teacher evaluation systems that use multiple measures to identify highly effective teachers and support the instructional improvement of all teachers. Therefore, I think the question today is “How to build on NCLB’s success and fix its problems?” Fortunately, states are leading the way. States that have chosen to raise standards will soon need to explain why student scores are dropping. Instead, they should be able to highlight students’ academic growth. School districts are stuck using NCLB’s definition of a highly qualified teacher based on paper credentials. And the law continues to encourage schools to narrow curriculum at the expense of important subjects such as history, civics, science, the arts and physical education. After 10 years of these flawed policies, our nation’s teachers and students deserve better. President Obama is proposing it but if elected presidency for another term we will drastically see Improvements in the school system states flexibility from NCLB in exchange for comprehensive plans to raise standards; to create fair, flexible and focused accountability systems. Although Congress has begun the process of reauthorizing NCLB. States and school districts need relief from NCLB right now.

"No Child Left Behind Act." News. N.p., 05 Nov. 2012. Web. 05 Nov. 2012. .

"No Child Left Behind." Research Center:. N.p., n.d. Web. 05 Nov. 2012. .

Kiara said...

There are many different changes that need to be made to our public education system. According to an article by StudentsFirst there are three priorities that need to be done. Priority one is, Elevate the teaching profession by valuing teachers’ impact on students. StudentsFirst believes that students can learn better if they have excellent teachers and principals. Priority two is, empower parents with real choices and real information. StudentsFirst wants to give more power to the parents so they have more say in their children’s education and empower communities by giving them power to reform schools. As well as giving parents more information about the schools their children go to and to know if their child is progressing in school. The last priority, priority three is, spend taxpayer resources wisely to get better results for students. StudentsFirst has seen that the per-pupil funding has doubled over the past forty years, but the students have little to show for it. They want to make sure that students are getting everything they need to learn and improve their education since the system now does not. Overall the public education system in the U.S. needs to be improved and maybe StudentsFirst will help in the first steps toward change.

StudentsFirst. "America's education system is broken. Today we release our plan to begin fixing it." 10 Jan. 2011. Web 05 Nov. 2012

Michelle Gutierrez said...

"At ASCD, we believe education is an issue that unites us. We all want good schools for each child. We are all interested in the design and implementation of effective school improvement strategies that help us close the achievement gap. We all support ongoing professional development so educators can continue to meet the needs of today’s students. We believe in working together to preserve U.S. competitiveness in the world through an education system that prepares students for college, career, and citizenship.

The obstacles to reach these goals are formidable. We know now that beyond the purely academic challenges, our education system is faced with a host of issues shaped by human psychology, technology, economics, and public administration, among other factors. Likewise, we know that parts of our complex education system work well, while other areas need improvement. We must move thoughtfully and carefully as we seek progress.

Education is a complicated public policy issue, ill-suited for reductive stump speeches that serve only to score political points. The multifaceted U.S. education system requires a high level of collaboration and accountability from policymakers, families, educators, and students to be successful. In addition, it requires agreement among stakeholders on the verydefinition of studentsuccess, which we here at ASCD believe means that students go to school and graduate feeling safe, healthy, engaged, supported, and challenged. Progress in this arena requires unity of purpose and understanding from the U.S. public, not rancor and division from its leaders.

Regardless of education’s exposure in this year’s presidential campaign, I am confident it is an issue that will attract the president’s immediate attention on day one of the next term. The issues are multidimensional and the stakes are high. Either candidate will have his hands full when he is sworn in next January. So, as this campaign concludes in the coming days, let’s hope the next four years unite all policymakers on both sides of the aisle in districts, states, and the nation’s capital to work together to improve our nation’s schools."

Carter,Gene."Education is missing in this election and perhaps that's a good thing." Nov.2012

Jesus Brito said...

School nowadays lower in their expectations students due to the lack of attention in your classes because they are worried more about what's going on outside the world then what's going on in their school even school is more important. They lower their standards too because students want to try to do minimal work and still pass. This isn't just going on right now it's been going on for years. People who started public schools right now would be a shame of what's going on now a days with public education. the dumbing down of America had that only happened at this time in age what has been happening over the past years. So the failure is not only to the teachers that take breaks on the student who lower standards but on everything the government does that doesn't help at all in public education.

" The deliberate dumbing down of America" nov.5.2012.web.2001

" The failure of American public education" nov.5.2012.web.2011

Jesus Brito said...

School nowadays lower in their expectations students due to the lack of attention in your classes because they are worried more about what's going on outside the world then what's going on in their school even school is more important. They lower their standards too because students want to try to do minimal work and still pass. This isn't just going on right now it's been going on for years. People who started public schools right now would be a shame of what's going on now a days with public education. the dumbing down of America had that only happened at this time in age what has been happening over the past years. So the failure is not only to the teachers that take breaks on the student who lower standards but on everything the government does that doesn't help at all in public education.

" The deliberate dumbing down of America" nov.5.2012.web.2001

" The failure of American public education" nov.5.2012.web.2011

Jennifer Mendoza said...

“No Child Left Behind” an interesting topic with some wicked influential purposes. ‘It is the primary statute governing the federal government’s role in education.” It has a goal as to all students be proficient in reading and mathematics by 2014. This system has failed. Me as a witness and victim of this fraud, because “money” hasn’t taught me anything but statistics, believing in learning something without having a fun added to it. My creativity has been shut down. It has been erased from my life , all that is left is books, books, notes, notes, facts and more facts about things that really won’t be useful in my future. They are interesting, but this act really hasn’t made anything big for me. It has provided me with great teacher/instructors in education; my learning hasn’t gotten any better than when I was in middle school. The public education needs to change the way “money” controls everything because If 4,700 dollars are being invested in my education, I will surely love to see where all that money goes to since my education isn’t been visualize in my own eyes. John D Rockefeller,” I don't want a nation of thinkers, I want a nation of workers”, But why? I’m sure a revolution would start , but a revolution full of education wise with facts that would improve the country. You can’t build a house without any art involve. Why kill the creativity over a dollar more…

"No Child Left Behind Act." News. New York Times, 06 July 2012. Web. 05 Nov. 2012. .
"No Child Left Behind Act." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 11 Jan. 2012. Web. 05 Nov. 2012. .

Romario Villa said...

Our education system is really missed up we are being dumbed down i think i learn the same thing every year. The state test we have are really point less because we can not come the whole year and still pass the test with flying colors. The no child left behind should just make us feel not smart because with that, that is what is making all look stupid. Kids in foreign countries are way smarter then us we arts suppose to be the stronger country and without education we are nothing and when we are nothing we will drop to the floor and not be superior no more. We are capable if more we need too be educated to the max that our brain can handle. We are smarter then this and the first way we can start is by improving our schools program.

jenahgomez said...

I personally think education is more important today than ever, with children competing against each other for top stops in Universities and jobs.We need higher standards in education in order for the United States to hold a high standing. With No child left behind, our nation is starting a trend where every student must pass a certain standardized test before moving up a grade. We need higher standards that define what may or may not pass and or after school academic programs which are free and mandatory for students who are falling below standard. Then maybe schools standards will rise up. I think, real improvement starts from within. Each teacher needs to commit themselfs to provide all children an equal and beneficial education. We are the future, and if we dont get the education we need, then we wont be able to accomplish the things we know we can success at if we had the education.We all learn differently, and that is something that makes everyone different. But if we had teachers able to teach the way each kid learned.. Then they would catch on better, or become more successful. This is my opinion, but i truly believe we can success if we have the tools to do so.

Weinstein, Anna Na. "Obama on No Child Left Behind." N.p., n.d. Web. 05 Nov. 2012.

Zhao, Emmeline. "No Child Left Behind Worsened Education, 48 Percent Of Americans 'Very Familiar' With The Law Say In Gallup Poll." The Huffington Post., 21 Aug. 2012. Web. 05 Nov. 2012.

Hannah Setinc said...

From our discussions in class, it's become pretty clear to me that the educational system in America needs to be changed. One of the biggest problems is that the main focus of the system is all wrong. Tom Loveless says "Schools have diluted their academic mission, by emphasizing the social experience: sports, proms and clubs." Tom is absolutely right. Instead of pushing the importance of adademics, the American schools spend lots of time and money on social events. Often times, the social events overrule class time. I see this gap firsthand alomst everyday.

I volunteer at my little sister's elementary school, in their after-school program. The school is an "improvements" school, just like Norte Vista is. And honestly, I can see why. The students have no desire to learn whatsoever. One of my sole responsibilities as a volunteer is to help the kids with their homework, and make sure they get it done. All the kids want to do, however, is do the bare minimum amount of work, so they can go off to the activity going on that day. They have no interest in explanations I offer, and don't care when I try to show them different ways to approach their problems. The kids only ask me for help in the hopes that I will tell them the answer. (Of course, I dont!) I have good reason to believe that they are used to people just telling them the answers so that they can move on. Hmm... reminds me alot of the premise of No Child Left Behind! So many of the kids I assist in my volunteering cannot perform simple math operations, or tell me the main idea of the story that they just read. It's actually quite sad.

So, first off, No Child Left Behind should be OUT. It only seems like common sense that if a child is not ready for the next grade, then they shouldn't progress. Schools should put the emphasis back on adademics, and put sports, dances, and other events second. This should result in the students thinking critically, learning creatively, and teachers setting their students to a higher standard than some guy in Sacramento has laid out. The students have great potential, and the schools should help them reach it.

Works Cited
Zhao, Emmeline. "No Child Left Behind Worsened Education, 48 Percent Of Americans 'Very Familiar' With The Law Say In Gallup Poll." The Huffington Post., 21 Aug. 2012. Web. 05 Nov. 2012.

Desk, News. "Education Olympics: How Does the U.S. Rank?" PBS. PBS, 13 Aug. 2012. Web. 05 Nov. 2012.

Shy wallflower21 said...

American education needs to desperately be fixed. It focuses on entirely the wrong things. The people in charge of the public education system in America seem to think that the problem can be fixed with the continuation of money being thrown at it, because money through the eyes of Americans solves everything. But what they’re suddenly finding is that money isn’t cutting it in fact it’s in a way worsening the problem. American public education is in fact focusing and mainly bases off of standardized testing. These tests were designed in mind to the students conveying how knowledgeable they are with certain topics. But in my opinion how can a test really present your intelligence level through bubbling in one answer? School has always taught me or at least had me thinking there is always one answer that is correct. I see knowledge on several levels, maybe that’s just the way I think. Tests in my eyes aren’t that important, they may be important from a grade aspect but they don’t really serve any other purpose than to force people to study. You take the test and when it’s over the information you spent hours trying to remember goes somewhere to be forgotten about. There is no other time in a person’s life that they will be “tested”, because in reality that doesn’t happen. School seems to be killing creativity. Shouldn’t learning be fun and exciting? Schools and teachers are so focused on how to teach children the art of acing a test; in the process they forget how to use the information in their everyday lives. It also seems like they are willing to do anything in order to get a student to pass, including dumbing the curriculum down and allowing a student to do the bare minimum to pass. Everything is focused on passing, like getting a high GPA, and not on truly learning the material to apply to your everyday life. But I don’t only think that it’s the public education systems fault I hold student s to it too. They seem to take their education for granted because we live in America, there will always be so sort of opportunity available. Students need to push themselves more in school and be more willing to learn something new because in the end they will be the ones benefiting from it, it’s their future in the line.
Sarah Dobra
Slekar, Timothy. “The Honest ‘Public Education Crisis’ Narrative.” Huffington Post. com. 05, November 2012. web. 26, January 2011.
Smirniotopoulos, Peter. “We Need An Education System That Promotes Creativity, Innovation, And Critical Thinking.” Huffington Post. com. 05, November 2012. web. 26, January 2011.

Armando Pena said...

Education needs to change in many ways. For one, standarized tests need to get ridden of. Its an unfair way of measuring students and teachers. Also the education system is corrupt because since elementary school, you are rewarded for doing something even though you might be doing it wrong. This is whats known as the self-esteem isuse. Teachers are told to not correcet students just so their self- esteem to be raised. Many would say in theroy, self-esteem would bring higher grades, but teachers around the US are calling it empty praise. I think that making kids feel good about themselves gets in their way of learning. For example, students who are rewarded for perfect attendance are like giving sportsmanship awards for being the worst team. It is completely worthless and wastes kid's time and their opportunities in learning. Also something else that needs to change in education is the students. We spend so much time focusing on our GPAs, SATs, etc. that we end up not learning a single thing. This needs to change in education so we can actually learn something.

Chandler, Micheal. "In schools, self-esteem boosting is losing favor to rigor, finer-tuned praise." Washington 05 November 2012. web. 15, January 2012.

Swallow, Erica."Creating Innovators: Why America's Education System Is Obsolete." 05 Nov. 2012. web. 25 April, 2012.

Robby Ramirez said...

Education in the United States as of this point is imply subpar, in terms of country the united staes was ranked 33rd as of 2006. The fact that the United States is a nation of power and wealth there seems to be inflation when it comes to education. There are many ways that education in the United States can improve due to the many sources of the problem. Overall the educational system sees students as, for the most part, numbers to regulate in order to bring in money. On average the government spends about $10,000-$12,000 on a student per year, regardless of that student’s performance in school. Schools are also prompted to get the student out of school as easy as they possibly can so that they receive that whopping stack of cash that student comes with. The students are locked to a certain district depending on where they live; definitely not allowed the choice to freely change public schools. The No Child Left Behind Act grants the government authority to judge a school by their performance in standardized test, and frankly that proved wrong in doing its intent. Standardized tests are in no way an accurate way to test a student’s knowledge and critical thinking skills, things they will be expected to have mastered by the time they get to college; for different students perform differently on various tests. Students should have the ability to be monitored more accurately, and in ways that are more personalized for each individual. They should also be allowed to choose which school they want to attend, rather than the one they are locked in to. Schools try to “beat around the bush” by highlighting money as their issue, and blame that as the reason they are failing to get good results. If schools were to focus more on getting the right programs, teachers, and aide they need, just merely the bare necessities to run the school we would one: have substantially better results, and two: we would give the economy the boost it needs, or focus that money on further education.

"No Child Left Behind." N.p., n.d. Web. 04 Nov. 2012.

"Educational Score Performance - Country Rankings." N.p., n.d. Web. 06 Nov. 2012.

Javier Clavijo said...

There are numerous changes that need to be made to the public education system in order to promote future success for our country. To illustrate, teachers and parents need to be far more strict and attentive when dealing with students. Educators in the classroom should discipline the students in a manner that does not discourage or frighten their students. At home, the parents need to closely monitor their child’s progress in school and not simply trust or assume that their son or daughter is doing well. Money in education is another factor that needs to be addressed. The money public schools say they need in order to help the students is simply not true. In an article titled “Do Public Schools Really Need More Money” author Donna Gundle-Krieg states that public schools do not need more money to successfully educate students, but rather more dedicated teachers who care about their students and feel as if “it’s their calling” to be educators. A school does not need a fancy swimming pool or an all weather track to help their students excel. This emphasis on bringing more money into the public school systems ultimately funds a school’s new swimming pool, wrestling room, and or track. Furthermore, in a Q&A, Peter Thiel brings up a very good point when he says “I think we have to shift the schools from being run for the benefit for the teachers and towards the benefit of students trying to be educated”. In public school systems today, a student is tightly bound to the curriculum that is provided by the state. This form of educating students fails to promote the individuality of each students mind and rather shapes the knowledge of every individual into a specific mold. Each student is basically taught in similar fashion and has the relatively similar knowledge as 2,000 other individuals. In order to create a world full of diverse minds and free thinkers, the government must take action and to begin the process of creating a system of schooling that revolves around the students.

"Do Public Schools Really Need More Money?" N.p., n.d. Web. 06 Nov. 2012.
"Big Think." What Is the Government's Role in Public Education? N.p., n.d. Web. 06 Nov. 2012.

Andrea Cruz said...

Everyone’s different everyone learns things differently at different paces or in different ways. Throughout the years I’ve came to the conclusion that a lot if the classes I’ve had to take are just so irrelevant to life, I’m not saying they were a waste of time but I am saying that I could have been learning something more important and schools don’t suffer from a lack of funding; they suffer from a lack of fundamentals. Less is being expected from students. Public schools should be local parents should get to decide where their kids should go to school if they think that will help better their child’s education. It is none of the FED. Gov.'s business where kids go to school. .There's enough blame to go around for everyone...parents, schools, teachers, government, and local communities. As a society, we should unite instead of always blaming someone else for the problems. We are all so one sided on who is to blame when the truth is, we are all to blame. We all have some kind of fault. Students need structure and rules. Both are missing in a lot of homes and schools for various different reasons.. Our education system is a problem, but the real reason in my opinion is that so many of our kids are failing is that no one at home cares if they succeed or fail. If they cared, they would put stricter expectations on their kids and punish or reward at home. Instead, the parents think teachers are responsible to babysit their kids before and after school and teach their kids discipline. Its not entirely thr teachers fault if a student is failing. Because clearly the student wasn’t putting enough effort.. A lot of dollars wasted on education and their is an uneducated society. With all the programs tried over the years, the only program that is successful is the mentor program. Sadly, it’s not affordable to provide every child a mentor for 13 years. And, the mentor is replacing the parent in the concept of setting expectations.

Casey, Annie E. "Statistics About Education in America." Casey, Apr. 2012. Web. 06 Nov. 2012. .

Lyles, Gina. "Educational Theories." Educational Theories. Ike Lyles, Aug. 2009. Web. 06 Nov. 2012. .

Victor Rodriguez said...

Our education in my opinion, is the main resource or major contribution to this country. We need the "system of education" to step it up and do what they are supposed to do. Schools just want money, money, money, and that shouldn't be the problem. We need to focus on the leaner and their needs. Develop the student to be the most who he can be to contribute to the world and it's society. Education is one of our many hopes who can actually get us out of this mess, it will take time. All we want as a country for our students to learn "New" things that can actually determine their future. For example, im my belief I think this nation focuses on some dumb tests in the end of the year to determine their scores, and not only the scores the whole school district as well. A student should be measured in how they develop?Or maybe what their abilities and skills are? I think the tests are rediculous in my behalf, the mean nothing. A student can excel in other areas in school such as hard work and determination in class, but however do bad in tests. This doesn't make the student a bad one, it makes him look bad just because of the poor test but miss out on the important stuff like their skills. All students under these schools reflect nothing. Students should be able to get the reasoning of thought and reason. These horrible people are controlling and limiting their students' capabilities to not being extended to their maximum. Many nations think our system of education is rediculous compared to theirs, however, they are correct. Their students are way superior to our own students. They are more focused in school and that is how it is supposed to be in all the systems of education in this nation. Their are many contributions to how a kid, student is. We never know how a kid is in and out of home, we should find out where they are comfortable in a good learning area. Students who are taking advantage of any form of education is good, I hate the people who waste and throw their education into the trash without any sort of importance. For example, many immigrants or undocumented people who are actually trying to extend their reach in life are limited. We should give them the opportunity to take advantage of the education the bad students in the society who are wasting their time. We as a nation should focus on the student, interact with each and every student to understand what they can become. Good students who will develop into a contribution to our future generation to develop and learn from the mistakes our systems have not achieved. There is plenty if time, but let's hope it is never too late for those who really want it.

Info USA.Bureau of International Information Programs. Department Of State. Web. November 05 2012.

Bennett J. Williams. 20 Troubling Facts About American Education. November 5 2012.

Ayo'Viruz ♥ said...

Nowadays education is more important then ever. There needs to be many changes done in order for students to fulfill better achievements. No matter how much money is being funded for education I don’t completely believe that’s the solution. Students nowadays are just not motivated. Money should be invested on education. For example enforcing uniform rules. With uniforms in schools their would be more discipline. Less focus on physical things and hopefully more focus on learning. That’s just one of many suggestions that students can benefit from. Lot of the times I feel like all we do is practice and prepare for a test. Later though all the material “learned’ is forgotten. Why? Well because it wasn’t taught correctly. More money would provide more books but honestly how many students would actually use them to there advantage. The truth is a lot of students check out books and they just sit there unread. The education system has to change. It will take time a lot of motivation too. We must focus more on schools and teachers rather then useless standardized stuff.

Rodgers, Marla. "General InformationPublic Education in the United States." Public Education in the United States. Arnold Welch, Feb.-Mar. 2009. Web. 06 Nov. 2012. .

Alejandro Avila said...

"And yeah, you, sorority girl. Just in case you accidentally wander into a voting booth one day, there's some things you should know, and one of them is, there's absolutely no evidence to support the statement that we're the greatest country in the world. We're 7th in literacy, 27th in math, 22nd in science, 49th in life expectancy, 178th in infant mortality, 3rd in median household income, number 4 in labor force, and number 4 in exports. We lead the world in only 3 categories: number of incarcerated citizens per capita, number of adults who believe angels are real, and defense spending, where we spend more than the next 26 countries combined. 25 of whom are allies. Now, none of this is the fault of a 20 year old college student. But you, nonetheless, are without a doubt a member of the worst period generation period ever period. So when you ask, 'what makes us the greatest country in the world?' I don't know what the f**k you're talking about. Yosemite? [Pause] We sure used to be. We stood up for what was right. We fought for moral reasons. We passed laws, struck down laws for moral reasons. We waged wars on poverty, not poor people. We sacrificed, we cared about our neighbors. We put our money where our mouths were. And we never beat our chest. We built great big things, made ungodly technological advances, explored the universe, cured diseases, and we cultivated the world's greatest artists and the world's greatest economy. We reached for the stars, acted like men. We aspired to intelligence, we didn't belittle it, it didn't make us feel inferior. We didn't identify ourselves by who we voted for in our last election. And we didn't... we didn't scare so easy. We were able to be all these things, and to do all these things, because we were informed. By great men, men who were revered. First step in solving any problem is recognizing there is one. America is not the greatest country in the world anymore."
As i heard this quote from HBO's "The Newsroom", I began to wonder if the man behind the words was being too pessimistic. Then I looked back at the facts that were being pointed out and also began wondering if reality for us Americans really does suck that much. The answer to that is: yes.
Although we remain a superpower, America nowadays is simply riding on the legacy left by the great men of our past; those who fought for freedom and those who stood against opposing nations in times of war.
We, America, have a problem and we must face that fact. We are no longer the strongest, fastest and most importantly, smartest. Our nation fails to even hold a candle up to other nations in many categories and one of them, arguably one of the most important, is education.
It seems as if most schools in this "great" nation of ours have lost their grip on what true education really is. They have created this new definition of "education" where passing standardized tests rather than basic classwork is admirable.

Alejandro Avila said...

Where one test rather than a whole year defines you as a student. The heads of our school system often spend more time pacing back and forth over where we fall schools rank after CST's rather than graduation rates. Our schools need change. A change that will focus more on preparing a student for their post high school plans, like college or jobs. American schools must improve and most of that begins in the classroom.
After transitioning from private school to public, i noticed the HUGE difference in classroom rules. Students would become so distracted with what the freedoms of the classroom were that they would not pay attention to the lessons. Classrooms need stricter rules to be enforced because if you force a student to listen and learn, they will either leave or learn. No in-between option, just learn or hit the bricks. Back in my private school, students were accustomed to never getting up in the middle of class or speaking over the teacher and rarely would a student walk away with questions or a lack of motivation to do homework. Public schools need to adopt some rules and regulations from private schools because they do work.
Another possible change in schools is the ridding of standardized testing. They are inaccurate tests when it comes to determining a student's actual cognitive ability. Give a lazy student that is good at guessing a test and he/she will make you believe that he/she is worthy of being acknowledged as a top-student--this should not be happening. The tests also focus on specific topics that often won't help expose the true identity of certain students. One could be gifted in the arts, but only be seen as what their math and reading scores say of them. Get rid of these tests, truly explore each student's capabilities and help them reach their potential.
We as a nation are no longer up there where we used to be, but sometimes we are sent to the bottom only to be reminded of what being the best felt like, which leads to inspiration to get back and with inspiration there is no telling what we can accomplish. There is hope, people. There is hope.

Moe, Terry M. "Change our Public Schools need." UnderGod., 1 Jan. 2011. Web. 5
Nov. 2012.

Meador, Derrick. "Pros and Cons of Standardized Testing"., 17 Sep. 2011. Web.
5 Nov. 2012.

ChiomaNwosu said...

I believe the public education system needs stricter rules and guidelines enforced. Teachers need to come up with better learning techniques,such as those that are fun and exciting and will enhance the student's ability to be more willing to learn and to study. There should be disciplinary action and certain consequences for those students who misbehave and do not follow the student conduct. Relatable rewards would also be a beneficial factor to enhancing our students' public education.

marissas blog said...

i beleive our education system is currupt. the ways we have kids learning are way different from back when the teachers were not being based on teaching by tests, the students they have to teach are not all good test takers and they shouldnt be judged or ranked off that. schools should be ranked by grades brought in not grades brought in through tests. if the education system had more money to work with i dont think it would really make a difference in how kids learn or the grades brought to the school i think it would just make up for more distractions. also in my opinion if they are trying to make schools learn better and teach kids easier they need to hire more teachers so their isnt 30+ students to a class because a enviorment like that is hard to learn in there is way to many distractions, also they need new books ones from the present not old ones that have been around for 10+ years. things change over time and we are not getting the new resources that we need.

Source: 2011 Journal Citation Reports® (Thomson Reuters, 2012)

Juan Covarrubias said...
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Juan Covarrubias said...
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Juan Covarrubias said...
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Juan Covarrubias said...

The American education system is often criticized, because American children have the tendency to score lower on tests than many other nations. Currently, The United States is ranked 31st in education. Sounds bad right? In addition to this, some critics say that America is losing it's global innovation status. But is this really true? I mean, the United States is home to huge international companies such as Facebook, Google (Android), Apple, Microsoft, and many more. Everyone around the world uses these companies' products. All these companies have really kick started during the past ten years. I don't see other nations with this many cutting edge technological firms. We may not be book smart, but at least we know how to innovate.

"How Do We Improve Public Schools?." The Moderate Voice. N.p., n.d. Web. 07 Nov. 2012.

"Education Olympics: How Does the U.S. Rank?" PBS. PBS, 13 Aug. 2012. Web. 07 Nov. 2012.