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US Education


Andius
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I've seen political topics floating around here before so I assume it's not taboo. I just really need to vent on this one. Here's a couple some of you may find interesting. 
 
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And yet people are STILL saying the voucher system will steal money from the public schools! The ones running the system are doing a good enough job already!

What's the voucher system? Well instead of the public schools getting thousands of dollars per student but requiring anyone who wants to give their kids a private school education to cover the costs themselves, the money follows the students. If you send your kid to a private school that school gets the money instead.

What's the point?
 

SAT.png

 

And here are the average private school costs.

 

Average public school cost ~15k$ per student. Average private school cost ~10k$. Quality of education? DRASTICALLY higher for private schools. Not only that. Studies show that in areas where the voucher system is implemented the quality of public education rises. They are actually forced to run themselves in a competitive fashion instead of having the monopoly on all children that can't afford better.

 

The only people it really screws is the 700% more school administrators we have added to our school system since 1950 who are using the massive amounts of money we are paying them to convince you this system is a bad idea.

 

The fact we haven't done this yet is a testament to how easy it is for people who lots of money to screw us into thinking what we want them to think.

Edited by Andius

"To hell with honor. Win."

A Beginner's Guide to Crowfall (5.8.5 Edition)

 

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Education, specifically grades 6-12, is overrated. The best way to learn is to do, period. I'd rather my money go to elementary schools and universities. And considering the US has the best universities, well....

Edited by cannibal man

Cannibal Man - Future serial killer

I can't even.  You win, I am done with this part of the discussion.

 

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Whatever we form of education we go with it's clear that allowing the government to monopolize the source of the education is a bad idea. Providing funding for us to use to educate our children? Awesome. Providing the education itself? As pretty clearly demonstrated above, they suck at it.

"To hell with honor. Win."

A Beginner's Guide to Crowfall (5.8.5 Edition)

 

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-snip-

Edited by primal

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We're mainly talking K-12 here Primal, though some of the issues in the K-12 system are part of the reason that if cars had risen in price at the same rate as a college education over the past few decades they'd be as expensive as a house.

Edited by Andius

"To hell with honor. Win."

A Beginner's Guide to Crowfall (5.8.5 Edition)

 

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Whatever we form of education we go with it's clear that allowing the government to monopolize the source of the education is a bad idea. Providing funding for us to use to educate our children? Awesome. Providing the education itself? As pretty clearly demonstrated above, they suck at it.

Government is an inefficient tool, that's nothing new. But yes I agree.

Cannibal Man - Future serial killer

I can't even.  You win, I am done with this part of the discussion.

 

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We're mainly talking K-12 here Primal.

 

As I were

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get rid of the dept of education at the fed lvl. All schools should be run locally. Having some unnamed and more importantly unaccountable bureaucrat dictating your schools policies from DC is silly. These professional "administrators" are just sucking up the money that would go towards schools/teachers/ and students. No business has such huge top heavy overhead. Its unnecessary, and corrupt. Everytime there is a school funding bill, the administrators threaten to lay off teachers. You never hear of them streamlining administration overhead! Also they need to ditch the social agenda and go back to the fundamentals. Kids these days cant spell, add(without their iPhone) or speak gooder  ;) then kids back before the federalization of education.  

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@Bairloch

 

Given that private schools already produce significantly better results for a lower average cost per student worst case scenario public schools get shutdown and people who can't afford to pay anything for their child's education still have plenty of better performing schools they can get a full ride at using vouchers.

 

What has actually happened when this system is implemented though is the public schools make the needed changed to provide their students with the value the taxpayers are funding so they don't get shut down.

 

But the adminstrators pocketing the money the current system offers them in generous amounts have paid a lot of money to make sure people who don't research this issue very well regurgitate the argument you just gave me.

 

A few selectively worded ad campaigns and the right connections to some politicians and people in the media and it's surprising how easy it is to get people spitting back points that really don't make any sense if you sit there and think about them for a minute. But these are the same people who care more about a politician's personal life than their voting record so... not overly surprising.

Edited by Andius

"To hell with honor. Win."

A Beginner's Guide to Crowfall (5.8.5 Edition)

 

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3 points on this subject. And, for background, my brother is a teacher, my ex wife was a teacher and my father served for years on a (very) small town school board.

 

1. You have an entire profession that has been marginalized and belittled for years. Parents petition schools to get teachers fired because their children failed a class, and the district actually does it. Teachers have the actual "education" part of their job removed in favor of teaching to a test, so even the good ones can't do what makes them good. And, on top of all that, our colleges and universities continue to tell students that there are plenty of jobs in teaching and that you can get a job easily when you graduate, so you get people becoming teachers because they think they can get a job easily, not because they want to be teachers.

 

2. Taking money away from a system and funneling it into another system is the worst way to improve it. The idea is "Hey, competition is good!", but you can't compete when you have no resources. Toll roads don't make the rest of the roads better. More on this...

 

3. Voucher systems don't work universally. In big cities with enough population you have all these private schools popping up to provide education. Lawmakers see the growing number of students going to private schools and see this as a reason to cut education funding. Unfortunately, as usual, small towns are left out in the cold. They don't have the population to support private schools. They didn't have the resources they needed before and now they're facing more cuts, and they have a hard enough time getting qualified instructors to come to Podunk to live. The toll road analogy works here too, since small populations can't support those either, so you can't keep cutting funding to transportation in favor of toll roads.

 

The issue is never as simple as a few bars and charts make it. Is the education system, as it stands, flawed? Yes. But starving it of resources and quality educators is not the way to bring it back. Involved, educated parents who know that their child is not entitled to all A's just for showing up, bringing respect back to the once honored profession of Teaching (which in turn brings in better people to teach), and not cutting funding for the education of the next generation is just a start.

 

Unfortunately, none of those are "easy" answers. "Let the private sector do it!" is an "easy" answer and therefore popular. It pushes the problem off on someone else so they can go back to their singing shows and living vicariously through their chubby kid's sports "future". When people don't have to think, don't have to work hard to find a solution, they won't. They'll go for what looks good on the surface and then ignore the problem until it blows up. At which point they'll cling to another "easy" fix until that one collapses. Bouncing from crisis to crisis to avoid having to just buckle down and do the hard work of actually fixing the problem. If you haven't seen "Idiocracy" you really should, it is rapidly becoming reality.

 

And this is how we take care of our children.

I'm in this for the Experience, not the XP.

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We are in a close competition with Switzerland to see which country can throw the most money (per student) at their education system of any country in the world and yet our education system is utter trash. Infact quality of education doesn't always (or even generally really) go up and even sometimes goes down based on how much money is being thrown at an area.

 

That's because the unions and administrators swoop in for a feeding frenzy when more money is thrown at an area. It doesn't help the teachers, it doesn't help the students, it just helps them.

 

Being a better parent is going to stop the school from hiring teachers that suck and the unions from making sure they never get fired. Taking your kid to a school that doesn't suck does.

 

That's not stealing money from them. That's pulling a student who is no longer taking their classes and using their facilities. No longer costing them the money they are supposedly using to educate the students. It's empowering the parents and students to make their own decisions.

 

I don't want the government picking the food my child eats. I don't want the government picking the movies and television I allow them to watch or books they can read. I don't want the government picking the school my child spends 7 hours a day at and who will be teaching them. That's my damn job, and they have already proven they do a piss poor job at it.

 

Why should I have to pay for all their schooling out of pocket if I don't want it to suck when the government is paying MORE to let me give them an education that does suck?

"To hell with honor. Win."

A Beginner's Guide to Crowfall (5.8.5 Edition)

 

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Your ire at the unions is.... nearly accurate. It isn't the union members you should focus on, but the administration. They were never teachers. They were hired from outside to be managers. They have, many times, angered their own teachers by getting them fired rather than taking the cuts the teachers would rather have agreed to. Fixing the union structure in the US is an entirely different conversation.

 

Giving money alone does not guarantee success, but it is necessary to success. We give more money than most? Great. We also have a better education system than most, even with its faults. We have more computers, more resources, better standard of care, and probably more waste as well. But cutting education funding doesn't cut waste. It takes from the kids without ever taking from those abusing the system. Is that what you want?

 

And, yes, more involved parents do clean up waste and bad teachers. In fact, it is the only way to do so. Whether it is at a private school or a public one. They are holding all the cards. They just need to realize it. And put the work in.

 

I see you neglect to address the small town issue.

 

Again, no easy answers. Lots of hard work. Lots of solutions that will chip away at the problem. No blanket, sweeping reform. It doesn't exist. It takes time, effort and give a damn.

Edited by bairloch

I'm in this for the Experience, not the XP.

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I wouldn't call our education good by any means unless you are comparing us to third world countries. While we and Switzerland are switching places back and forth for first and second for most spending we're around #24 in how well our students test vs. other nations. Some of the nations that beat us have drastically less education spending per student.

 

The administration is absolutely the main problem but I will say when I was in school there were teachers that were really good and some that were really bad. The only ones I ever heard criticize the unions were two of the best I ever had, and the only ones I heard praise them were two of the worst. They were actually all nice people but some were born to be great teachers while others just ended up teaching.

 

I grew up in a small town (5000 people) and our school was actually better than the ones in the nearest big city (300k) for the most part. Unless you are talking towns with people in the hundreds I don't see small towns as the big issue. I'll bet you 90%+ of the high school graduates that can't read are coming from the poor areas of big cities. Not small towns unless we are talking less than 1000 people like say the bush in Alaska. And unfortunately those places will just never get good education unless it's online.

 

If you keep the spending the same $ per student regardless of their district it may or may not help small towns but it isn't going to hurt them.

"To hell with honor. Win."

A Beginner's Guide to Crowfall (5.8.5 Edition)

 

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Why is it students get a better education at private schools than public schools? Easy: parents.

 

Now, I can't afford a private school, so that doesn't mean I don't care about my kids. But that chart can't take into account everything. It can't separate out the parents that care from the ones that don't. Or the parents that are busy working 2 jobs that don't have the time. Or the single parent that doesn't have the time. Or the poor parents that don't have the resources. If they went to a private school, more than likely they had parents who sent them to preschool, who read to them (or had Rosa read to them), had grandparents who read to them and/or had a good support network.

 

Public schools include kids that don't get a good diet, don't have good parents, do have good parents, have gangbanger parents, are in broken homes, are abused, get bullied more often due to race and other genetic factors beyond their control, and parents that don't have time due to fiscal responsibilities. Sure, children in private schools have those issues, but are less likely to.

 

On the one hand, teachers have their hands tied behind their back with programs like No Child Left Behind and other rules and regulations. I remember hearing other kids read in elementary school and think "god, i hate this". I couldn't imagine what it's like now. And then you've got parents who didn't bother raising their kids and in turn, go nuts in the classroom and spend most of their time expelled. Teachers also end up worrying about the kids who come to school in the rain with no coat or in shorts in the winter and other issues that parents present because apparently they aren't parents.

 

 

http://www.statisticbrain.com/number-of-american-adults-who-cant-read/

Since this topic was brought up, can somebody explain me how the custard can you graduate from high school and be unable to read ?

then again could be a custarded up statistics site.

 

It sounds custarded up to me. 19% of High School graduates can't read? Come on! Maybe 19% of dropouts can't read, I'd believe that. And 70% of prison inmates can't read? I'd believe there's a high illiteracy rate in prisons, but not that high.

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I am talking small towns of hundreds of people. They are everywhere, not just "the bush in Alaska". I live in Iowa, for instance. My father was on the school board in Minnesota. That district was made up of 3 or 4 towns to get enough kids for a school. And the school was dirt poor.

 

The difference is, dirt poor schools in small towns don't get any notice. They don't get grant money for laptops. The gigantic Los Angeles school district doesn't foolishly provide ipads for everyone (even in the inner city students). And no one knows any of this because there are no media outlets there to cover it. They just struggle on.

 

Using testing as the sole method of judging how well our students do vs. other countries is a flawed plan. Using testing as the sole method to judge the success of an education system is a bad idea. Using testing as the sole method to judge anything is a bad idea.

 

As we cut back in education (not just money, but its perceived value to us), look around you, what else are we losing? Our labor force is lacking in skills. Our prison populations are growing rapidly. Our voter turnout is abysmal. Why? Many reasons. One of them is no one thinks education is important anymore.

 

My brother shared a conversation he had with a student the other day. The young man wanted to know why he should be studying trig. He doesn't want a desk job. He plans to drive truck and make more money than a guy at a desk anyway (probably right). My brother explained that driving truck, and doing it well, is much more complicated than it might appear and a well rounded education could be very beneficial in the long run, but the student was unmoved.

 

Where did the young man get this idea? That education was unnecessary? Certainly not from his teachers, who lose their jobs in a world where education is unnecessary. So where? The media? His parents? His peers? "Society"? Yes, all of them, and more.

 

It is incumbent upon all of us to work for this. Throwing out a voucher system as a fix-all is narrow-minded. It will temporarily boost some statistics, but will it fix the real problems all by itself? No, no it won't.

I'm in this for the Experience, not the XP.

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Not only that. Studies show that in areas where the voucher system is implemented the quality of public education rises.

 

Source please. I'm not finding much data that agrees with this.

 

Also, everything headlight said. All of it. I was thinking along the same lines but I couldn't put it into words.

Edited by txteclipse
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