- Capitalism and Alternatives -

You must be a product of the School of Soft Knocks.

Posted by: Garloo on March 03, 19100 at 20:45:36:

In Reply to: It shows in your reasoning posted by Samuel Day Fassbinder on March 03, 19100 at 11:32:02:

: : Yes, there certainly is a problem with schools in America. Lark is painting with a pretty broad brush when he says they produce nothing but dumb people however. You can still get a good education, even at a bad school, provided you have drive and self reliance.

: SDF: Ah yes, the "Horatio Alger" myth applied to education. Nobody really has "self reliance," we are all in this society together, all labor is social labor, people are groomed to fit into social classes. The folks who once claimed the mantle of "self reliance" were actually beneficiaries of community and government benefits.

Garloo: I'm not. Go blow yourself.

: : If Hank is going to blame the troubles on 'Big Corporations' then I'm going to blame the lefties who put kids in diversity training and hug therapy classes instead of math and science.

: SDF: I would like to read a citation of even one instance of a "therapy class" or of "diversity training" being held in any of America's public schools.

Garloo: Arlington Senior High School in East St. Paul is one of four Public schools on Academic Probation in the city. If they don't raise test scores they're going to start 'restructuring.' That is essentially a euphamism for firing all the teachers who are not tenured. These would be the teachers you suggested are unqualified, my experience shows that these tend to be the teachers (at inner city schools at any rate) who wish to change the world, the real go getters. As opposed to raising the bar and trying to get more out of the students, the administrators (There are five AP's at Arlington who are paid any where between 65 and 90 thousand dollars per year. The starting wage for a teacher at Arlington is 26 thousand per year.) hold a 'Diversity Week' one week in each of the four quarters. Where are the kids during 'Diversity week?' Not in class. They're in the gym playing teacher-student volleyball games. They're in the commons making a 'diversity collage' whatever that means. Perhaps it's just as well. With a collective salary at nearly half a million dollars for the assistant principals alone, the school has little money for anything constructive. The Ap's delegate jobs and tasks that used to be theirs to the teachers that you admit are already harassed and overworked. I wonder why that is? You can go ahead and try to get an AP from Arlington on the phone but they're usually in a meeting...trying to figure out what went wrong.

I'm sorry I'm not a scholar. I don't think I've ever tried to hide my naivete from the people at this board. I have no citation to verify the above information. I suppose you can call Arlington yourself but the Ap's are pretty reluctant to discuss things on the phone because of all the gang problems they have ( the media love to cover those stories.) Now you can use the old stand-by 'let them eat anecdotes' defense or you can take my word for it as someone who has seen this happen first hand. I don't care. ( I should note additionally that students can opt-out of the diversity programs and stay in class. And some do. Guess which ones, the students who are passing or the ones who are failing?

: : Don't get me wrong, I'm all for diversity. Hugs are great. But let's be serious for a minute people. The public schools in America had better start to act their age. Seriously, if someone has a hang nail they cancel class and call in the grief counselors.

: SDF: I would like to know the name, position, work phone number and work address of anyone in America's public schools who is in fact a "grief counselor".

Garloo: Grief counseling has been a huge phonomena of the last five years. I can't furnish you with the phone numbers of any personally but are you seriously doubting their existence? Do you live in a box? More than likely you are just trying to submarine my debating style or lack thereof. Go ahead, you have every right.

: : If I had to do it over again I would have gone into grief counseling. Talk about a growth industry, good grief. The students today are slowly learning that how they feel is far more important than what they know.

: SDF: Um, where I come from, the main thing that students are learning in public schools is that schooling is irrelevant to their lives, and so they tune it out.

Garloo: Is that ANY different than what I just said smartguy?

: : To fix the problem they created the schools adopt bare minimum, poorly crafted standards like Goals 2000, School To Work, and the Profile of Learning. Trust me, this is serious Mickey Mouse shit.

: SDF: Well, we could have a system like the ones in Europe, which fails large numbers of its students before channeling them into menial work.

Garloo: You must be referring to the school system that lark Lord's over us. The one that is alledgedly far superior to America's. That was my point in the first place. Nice try though.

: As for the proposed solution of failing everyone who doesn't "measure up" -- well, we could put our 9th graders back in 5th grade, but what would that do for their dignity?

Garloo: You sure are concerned with their dignity. You'd better take your pick though. Educate them at the levels needed for success. Or pass them along into a world where they are only qualified for undignified work your condescending ass would call menial.

What's needed is a society of learners that will allow all of its members to participate in the good life, and if we had enough real educators putting their combined efforts into creating that, well, then we'd have a revolution on our hands...

Garloo: Agreed. Of coures how would you reconcile the paradox that Stoller would point out: If every pulled themselves up {to the good life} evil capitalism would still need someone to scrub the toilets. Eventually some one from your good life SDF, will need to do some menial work. And please, give me a better answer than the crack-induced fantasy of job rotaion.

: : The students get coached through it and passed on to graduation all the while being told that they need to go on to college. In lump sum, they move on to the nearest university to have their tuition coddled away from them. It's pretty disgusting because a lot of these kids believe they are being educated, only to have the rug yanked out from under them when they attempt to join a work force they are totally unprepared for.

: SDF: I really doubt that students think they are being educated, rather they don't think about school at all even while being imprisoned within its walls for thirteen years per head.

Garloo: Duuuuhh I'd like da' work number of juuust one student who dusn't think they r bein' educated.

: : Myself?...after 12 years at public schools I put myself through four years of private college and started my dream job a month after graduating. Does that make me smart in the eyes of some European wonk? I could give a flying fuck. At the end of the day...I know I'm smart.

: SDF: Maybe you should have experienced more failure, then would you feel smart? On the one hand you complain about how the schools pass everyone along, then on the other hand "I know I'm smart" as a graduate of this same system!

Garloo: Well SDF, I certainly have dignity in a career that is anything but menial. Doesn't that make me the Grand Poobah of your silly little world? I've experienced plenty of failure and I've overcome plenty of adversity. I put myself through the private school of my choice and finally got the education I wanted and deserved. I'm sorry if my wanting that opportunity to be available for everyone else makes me a bad guy.

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