Either I only have 2 people that read my blog these days or there are only 2 people who have an opinion on education. Seriously, doesn't anyone else have anything to say?
Tonya, I think you are absolutely right. It is definitely not the teacher's fault. They are just doing what they have been told to do. In fact, did you know that recent studies show that over 50% of all new teachers will quit within their first five years of teaching? When I started teaching in Texas and was immersed into a real classroom, I was so glad that I was teaching Kindergarten. I was shocked to see the kind of pressure and stress that the older grades had to put on their students in order to get a certain percentage of them to pass the test so that the school would get funding and the teachers would get their bonus. It really is not fair to the teachers, or the children. For so long, I blamed it on the government. I blamed it on the government program No Child Left Behind. But, it really isn't the government's fault. In my opinion, they shouldn't be so involved in education, but the problem is that we, as a country, have forced them to get involved. We force them to get involve as the drop out rates have hit a dangerously high level. We have forced them to get involved as the standards have become lower and lower in schools because the teachers are no longer just teachers teaching math, science, and english, they are also standing in as mentors and confidants teaching students what they are not being taught in their homes by their own parents.
What children are not getting in their own homes, the schools are having to make up for. So, really when it comes down to it...it is our fault. And when I say "our" I mean every one of us. We can all do more. We can do more to teach our own children. We can do more to encourage education and family in our communities. We can do more in our children's schools. We can do more within our own homes to foster a love for reading and learning. It just fascinates me how in Pakistan the terrorist blow up girls schools. They feel SO threatened by Greg Mortenson, who is "fighting terrorist one school at a time" because they know that if the girls are given an opportunity to be educated then they will not allow their sons to join the terrorist groups (culturally, they must get permission from their mothers in order to do so). In this example, as in so many others, education could change everything, and in turn, save a nation.
I feel like, as mothers, we have the greatest responsibility to promote and encourage a love of learning. When you think of the Stripling Warriors, you always think of their "mothers who knew". We must be those same kind of mothers. Mothers who know that education is one of the greatest gifts we can give our children. Mothers who know that the most important classroom is the one within our own homes.
Just recently, President Obama said that the drop out rate is becoming a "national crisis". I think that if we were to just do a little more in our own homes and community, then we could make a change, even if it's a small one, in our little corner of the world. I believe that as we all do a little more and take this crisis as seriously as we should, then in turn, we could literally save our own nation.
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