We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
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Friday, June 23. 2017
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The Education Realist makes exactly no sense until that moment in time when it states that public education should not exist. Everything else is left-empowering relativism doomed to fail even more than the ed system itself.
Which, look around you.
When I was an undergrad, about 50 years ago, the education majors were notorious for being the dumbest kids on campus. We always thought this was funny considering the line of work they wanted to go into. They haven't gotten any smarter the past 50 years.
Not dumb, just not scholarly. Not interested, but wanted a job
When I was in elementary school back in the dark ages (1960's), there were three classes for each grade. An advanced class for the overachievers, a regular class, and a remedial class for those who really weren't going to achieve much but still needed to learn to read and write and add and subtract. The teachers were geared toward these students in particular.
Now the assumption is that everyone is equal in learning ability, which is just crap. So, the smart kids get dumbed down by the not so intelligent kids, both groups just get bored and act out, and schools, who don't want to look like hotbeds of wasted time, don't bother enforcing any discipline, so all hell breaks loose and nobody learns anything.
Public schools are a sewer, with a few notable exceptions. Reform would look like making schools private and paying for results. Good luck with that.
There are no "public" schools any more. The public has no input or control over them. They are Government Schools, run for the benefit of the teachers unions and government workers unions. Students are just the catalyzing agent for the spending of government moneys to benefit the public union workers.
The public schools are broken beyond repair; so it's pointless to talk about reform. The question arises: it is really necessary for these schools to exist? What would happen if they closed?
In my view, several very good things would happen. Cheap private schools would spring-up to meet the needs of parents who don't have much money. Church schools, Montessori Schools, Vocational Schools, a wide variety. Also, parents would be able to teach what they want in these schools; a degree in "education' would no longer be required.
Another good thing that would happen is the troublemakers would be out of business. Getting expelled from a private school is easy; no gang-bangers need apply. And parents who think of school as a baby-sitting service would finally have to get involved in their children's education.
And of course, homeowners would be thrilled with a lower property tax.
I think in that case you would have to spend a lot more money on guns, guards, walls and security systems. You are going to have a lot of feral teens and children wandering the streets (remember, public schools also have a warehousing function). The police are either going to have to arrest them and put them to work in labor brigades or factories, or you are going to have to have the right to shoot them down or "disappear" them. Or sell them into slavery of one sort or another.
Of course, that is exactly what happens in a lot of third-world countries.
Then, there is always Jonathan Swift's solution.
Good Points. We might have to go back to the old-fashioned orphanages; or military academies. I don't think that there is much danger that we will have the same social problems as Brazil; America has far too much firepower for that.
But there will be always be some kids who are incorrigible. That leads to the question of whether euthanasia is ethical. After all, the whole point of closing the public schools is to release the taxpayer from the responsibility of supporting criminals. Many of these kids will never be anything but a burden.
Personally, I would engage some sort of three-strikes law, applicable to anyone age 16 or older. First strike - Rare Second Strike - Medium Third Strike - Well Done.
While the unions and ignorant "teachers" are a problem, the real issue is the very low IQ children of the black underclass. IQ's in the ghetto are probably in the 70's. These are people who are only marginally trainable, and only for unskilled manual labor at that. As Steve Sailer has shown, if you subtract the ghetto schools from the record, the remaining, white American schools test out like European and Asian schools.
The black underclass, stupid, violent, shiftless, is the principal danger to the US today. They have already destroyed numerous American cities, and many more will be destroyed.
Our public schools are a national disgrace with abysmal international rankings.
Finland is normally one of the top-ranked educational systems in the world. The teachers are fully unionized, have advanced degrees which are subsidized, are accorded respect congruent with their social importance so there are always large number of applicants, class sizes are small and all children regardless of ability are taught in the same classroom, a third receive extra help in their early years, there's only one mandatory test at age 16, little homework, tuition is free along with meals, and the student population includes about 5% whose first language is not native including a sizeable Somali population, and 2/3 advance to college.
If you pay your teachers what you pay your American football players ... well, it's a matter of priorities.
"If you pay your teachers what you pay your American football players"
Someone doesn't understand economics. Most owners of football teams are making billions. Yes the football players are overpaid and demanding but did I mention that most owners of football teams are making billions.
But go to you nearby high school and look at the schedule for the teachers. Typically they will work 4 maybe 5 50 minute periods a day. Your high school might have 20 classrooms but they will have 40 teachers. What are the other 20 doing when 20 are teaching? They will have a couple dozen administrative employees and half a dozen janitors. Your teachers will be making on average 20%-100% more than the average wage of the people who live in your city and they work 9 months a year 4.5 hours a day. AND most importantly the school system isn't generating any profit (unlike those overpaid football players). In fact the school system/teachers will suck up half or more of the state and local taxes AND a nice pile of cash from your federal taxes AND they will get 5% raises every year AND still whine that they don't get enough.
I have a "revolutionary" idea. How about we pay teachers the average for the community they live in and the teachers stop the featherbedding and actually teach 7-8 classes a day so we can stop the over staffing and save the tax payers money.
Like I said: Reforming the system won't work. Teacher's unions have too much political power. The only solution is to shut the system down. The blacks will riot, but hey, they're going to riot anyway.
IdahoBob: Someone doesn't understand economics.
Well, in economics, if you offer a higher wage, you will increase your pool of applicants, and attract higher quality candidates.
IdahoBob: Your teachers will be making on average 20%-100% more than the average wage of the people who live in your city and they work 9 months a year 4.5 hours a day.
In the U.S., teachers generally make considerably less than those with similar education and experience. What that means is that the best candidates go into other fields. Furthermore, most teachers work far more than just during class time. There is a problem with administrative bloat, however.
"teachers generally make considerably less than those with similar education and experience"
But it begs the question. Good solid Americans who earn between $30k and $50k are being taxed thousands a year to pay teachers salaries and benefits that exceed $70k. They pay this year after year until they die. How do you think they feel knowing that the schools hire twice as many teachers as they have classrooms and that teachers work 5 hours a day for only 9 months a year? This is what causes cities and counties to have to run election after election to finally sneak through another tax hike to pay higher wages and benefits for teachers. In my city if a tax measure fails the city picks a unusual time for a special election to try to sneak it past the voters. Why??? If the teachers/politicians were honest why multiple bites of the apple to sneak a vote past the voters?
AND to make matters worse everyone knows that the reason we keep needing another school and another 30-40 teachers is because our federal government doesn't enforce our immigration laws. The little guy is getting screwed and our government and the unions are the oppressors. Do you really expect goodwill in return.
"most teachers work far more than just during class time."
Maybe true, that is what they say. But to be honest with you I'm not buying it. Maybe you just hit on the problem and we need to redesign the system so that 100% of the teachers time is face time in the classroom and 0% is administrative/paperwork. That way we could fire half the teachers and save the tax payers big bucks.
It's not just teacher's salaries that are the problem; there is incredible administrative overhead. Many school bureaucrats get paid more than $100,000 a year. Plus pensions. It's nothing but good old Tammany Hall politics.
With the internet making so much instruction available on-line, there is really no reason for public schools to exist. And I don't believe that parents should receive vouchers; they should be solely responsible for the cost of educating their own children.
Close the schools; and tell the parents to work it out.
Ron Liebermann: And I don't believe that parents should receive vouchers; they should be solely responsible for the cost of educating their own children.
That would leave the children of the poor without the opportunity of an education.
IdahoBob: Good solid Americans who earn between $30k and $50k are being taxed thousands a year to pay teachers salaries and benefits that exceed $70k.
Good solid Americans should make sure their children get a better education. Teachers generally make less than others with similar education and experience.
IdahoBob: How do you think they feel knowing that the schools hire twice as many teachers as they have classrooms and that teachers work 5 hours a day for only 9 months a year?
We already agreed that there is administrative bloat. We also noted that most teachers work far longer than 5 hours a day.
IdahoBob: Maybe you just hit on the problem and we need to redesign the system so that 100% of the teachers time is face time in the classroom and 0% is administrative/paperwork.
Lessons plans don't write themselves, tests need to be graded, and some students may need additional help. Did you consider the example of Finland? By according high status to teachers and education, the applicant pool fiercely competes for the available job openings.
[i]Your teachers will be making on average 20%-100% more than the average wage of the people who live in your city and they work 9 months a year 4.5 hours a day.[/]
Your statement shows your UTTER IGNORANCE of what goes in in education. When I was a teacher, a 12 hour day was my norm. I suggest you try teaching and then get back to us about that "4.5 hour day."
Don't know if I saw this here or elsewhere but it is worth reposting.
In inflation adjusted dollars we are spending triple what we were spending in 1970 while test scores have remained flat.
It's obvious that throwing more money at education isn't helping the kids.
"Good solid Americans should make sure their children get a better education."
True but this has nothing to do with the featherbedding and the skyrocketing administrative costs. And as we all know it isn't improved with higher teachers salaries.
"We also noted that most teachers work far longer than 5 hours a day"
Doing "something" but NOT teaching. While that teacher is "working" at non-teaching we pay another teacher to teach.
"Lessons plans don't write themselves"
Every year they rewrite the lesson plans. What happened in math, English and history that caused that??? How long does it take to rewrite them???
"tests need to be graded"
We need more teaching and less testing.
"Did you consider the example of Finland?"
Finland! Seriously! A tiny country where everyone is a relative and you compare that with American schools! Sounds like a red herring (no offense to the Fins).
IdahoBob: True but this has nothing to do with the featherbedding and the skyrocketing administrative costs. And as we all know it isn't improved with higher teachers salaries.
What do you suggest?
IdahoBob: Doing "something" but NOT teaching. While that teacher is "working" at non-teaching we pay another teacher to teach.
Preparing lesson plans, grading tests, and helping students, is a reasonable use of a teacher's time, and certainly should be compensated.
IdahoBob: We need more teaching and less testing.
Testing in this case doesn't refer to standardized testing, but evaluating and commenting on a student's work.
IdahoBob: A tiny country where everyone is a relative and you compare that with American schools!
In other words, no, you didn't.