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View Diary: Rich Kid, Poor Kid - Who gets the education? (36 comments)

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  •  I'm sorry (0+ / 0-)

    I have no sympathy for this line of thinking. Your attitude undermines those students who despite the circumstance, do put in the extra effort and work for the better grades.

    There are many reasons the students in Boulder do better. They are more likely to have educated parents who can help them, and more importantly, who can monitor their work. They are also more likely to work harder in class - driven by their parents, ofcourse - but lets not discount the fact they it's the student who does the work, motivation notwithstanding.

    I grew up in Africa. My father used to tell stories of having to light a candle to study at night. We had it much tougher than your students, but getting good grades was always a given because we worked hard at it.

    Bemoan the lack of parental guidance, not the 'poor students' having to be tested so much. In fact perhaps having teachers who think the testing is pointless and unnecessary, instead of important and crucial, might explain why the students disregard the test too - and all this shows up in the results.

    I distictly remember every test looming so large(we had four every trimester - 12 a year). My teachers in the delapidated schools were right to be so omnious. It got me to Medical school on a scolarship.

    Teacher does not equal friend. It is not your job to sympatize with students, but to drive them to maximize their potential. That usually involves them doing things they'd rather not be doing - like studying for tests. Try it. Maybe the kids' good grades will translate into less testing in the future - win, win.

    •  No need to apologize. (1+ / 0-)
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      Cassandra Waites

      Teacher does not equal friend. It is not your job to sympatize with students, but to drive them to maximize their potential. That usually involves them doing things they'd rather not be doing - like studying for tests. Try it. Maybe the kids' good grades will translate into less testing in the future - win, win.

      I appreciate your comment, but I do have to say that I did not write this to elicit sympathy for myself or for the students who could care less about their scholastic careers, but to draw attention to the greater problem of inequity in educational opportunities.  I freely admit that some of my students simply do not do the work, and for them I ask no forgiveness or allowance.

      I do, however, want something to change when it comes to the educational opportunities available for those students who do try, just as you did.  Even the students who want to learn and put in amazing amounts of effort are still being tested - in a standardized way, not content way - to the very limits.  Some of them are here despite disadvantaged parents and do want to become something more than their parents were able to attain (one of my students wants to be an elementary school teacher, and her mother didn't make it past the sixth grade).

      Please don't misunderstand my intent.  I want the quality - and amount - of education that affluent students receive to be available for all students who have that desire to push beyond the limitations of their socio-economic status.

      ~~~~~~~~ "There are worse crimes than burning books. One of them is not reading them." - Joseph Brodsky

      by Shakespeares Sister on Wed Sep 16, 2009 at 09:06:22 AM PDT

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