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View Diary: My Experience with an Alternative Charter School (137 comments)

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  •  learning outside the system (3+ / 0-)

    means you don't learn the system. Any measurement used to measure how well you mesh with the system is naturally going to show you up short if you're not using the system to integrate the students into the system.

    An analogy would be like if you raised kids in the Swiss Family Robinson way and expected them to slide right into 19th century Victorian society as the measure of how well they were raised.

    Like it or not, our system is built from the ground up and in order to integrate later in life, you have to start early.

    I believe there are many charter school plans and teaching methods with their hearts in the right place, but our public schools have evolved this way for a reason. There is no magic bullet either in or out of the education system to make kids learn better or make more kids learn better.

    Honestly, I think the attitudes that need changing the most are those of the adults--both parents and educators. If you go into the public school system (or the charter school system or even homeschooling) thinking that "school" is the sum total of the "education" your child will need to succeed, you will end up miserable.

    Bottom line. No matter where your kid "goes to school" your kid has to be learning in every aspect of his or her life. Assuming that the 9-3 (or homeschooling hours/days) are the alpha and the omega to that education is nothing but folly. Public (or charter or curriculum) education is the bare minimum you need to equip your offspring with the skills needed to barely function in the society we have today. Public ed, charter ed, homeschooling curricula for sale or download, will not wrap up everything in a pretty red bow and until our society accepts that reality, they will be demanding more from schools of any sort than the schools can give, and receiving disappointment.

    I 'ship Obama/America. OTP

    by athenap on Fri Jun 17, 2011 at 01:52:57 PM PDT

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    •  I certainly would second your statement... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      angelajean
      Bottom line. No matter where your kid "goes to school" your kid has to be learning in every aspect of his or her life. Assuming that the 9-3 (or homeschooling hours/days) are the alpha and the omega to that education is nothing but folly.

      From my own experience growing up, I learned most of the skills I use today outside of school.  See my piece http://www.leftyparent.com/....  

      Cooper Zale Los Angeles http://www.leftyparent.com

      by leftyparent on Fri Jun 17, 2011 at 03:10:35 PM PDT

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    •  What's interesting is that I agree with you (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Prof Haley

      that our school system has been designed to integrate our children into our society as it exists.  What if I'm unhappy with our society? What if I want more people to believe in health care for all, for civil rights for all, for freedom of religion or freedom to have no religion, for a society with no wars, for a society with little to no poverty? By your frame of reference, I would need to change the education system to accomplish that.

      That's exactly what I want to do. I want to see an education system that encourages logical deduction so that people better understand science; that encourages a love of learning so that people are willing to learn well beyond their senior year in high school; that encourages civic participation so that more of our citizens vote and participate in the process. I personally think the best way to accomplish these things is to encourage more, not less, progressive education models, be they charter schools or traditional public schools.

      •  My wife is a public high school English teacher (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        sandblaster, angelajean, elfling

        and is definitely seeing a generation who do want, and are equipped to strive for, a more just, enlightened, and progressive society. They also understand they're all going to need jobs. There are kids who beg for additional challenge, and kids who won't do the minimum even if they have the skills.

        There are legitimate discussions to be had regarding both form and content of education. Progressive content, and love of learning, are thriving in the form of school the diarist regards as such a problem. It just takes good teachers and a supportive environment. That's harder than it sounds or course, but it doesn't mean that standards, grades, and teachers directing the curriculum are the problem.

        into the blue again, after the money's gone

        by Prof Haley on Fri Jun 17, 2011 at 05:47:42 PM PDT

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