In today’s society; day and age, I think our educational system is creating lazy children… How? Well… think about this. My children go to school; there’s a drawing competition. Everyone is made to participate. There will be winners, and prizes BUT everyone gets rewarded and get this; even the little one who didn’t want to participate and decided they would do as little as possible and only drew a dot on a piece of paper and said it was an ant dancing. (This ACTUALLY happened back in 1998 at my daughters school!) They get an award as well; for not even trying. THIS kind of behavior teaches children the concept of “Why bother, I’ll still get something out of this anyway.” This in turn creates children who turn into lazy teens and adults.
Oh; OK so I know others are thinking, “I hope YOU don’t have kids…blah blah blah!” Actually I do have children. 4 of my own, 4 adopted and I’ve fostered 23 others over 20 years and I STILL firmly believe that our educational system are teaching our children to be lazy, be DAMNED if I’m going to allow mine to be that way…
Here’s how. In Nunavut the dropout rate for high school students is sitting at 50%, mainly because kids who don’t understand the work are made to continue on without assistance (due to cut backs) and passed on through the schooling system till grade 10 and then they hit that wall with exams, tests, and more; overwhelm them and they drop out because they don’t understand/can’t get the help and are not shown how to do things. Many can’t write, read properly and then some. (Story located here) Why does this happen, because the education system decided that failing a child would “Warp their minds, or degrade their self esteem” So in order to protect children, the school systems fail the children by NOT failing them even if they need to be held back. THIS ensures even WORSE self esteem issues as they mature.
It’s time to ask why the education system is failing our children. My son has a learning disability. He needs the help but he also refuses to be in a specialized class setting because he gets picked on. So he endures the general academic settings. He misses time from class due to medical reasons. He gets nailed 30 points a DAY… for time missed. Last year he missed 33 classes total. 990 total points for attendance lost out of a possible 8370 this is 12% of his TOTAL mark; for the year; for attendance which broken down is listed out of the terms as less than a 10th of his total overall grade.
*This is the break down which can be also viewed here* Jr/High school
Semester 1 from September to January there are a total of 97 Operational days (meaning days the school is actually opened) and 93 instructional days (meaning days the teachers actually as in class teaching.) Semester 2 from February till June there’s 195 Operational days and 186 instructional days.
In total there’s 292 operational days (1 organization day, 3 assessment and evaluation days and 5 Professional developmental/NSTU conferences throughout the year) This leaves in total 279 actual instructional days.
His home work counts as 30% of his average as well, BUT if a student misses a class their homework isn’t given to them, and they receive an ‘incomplete’ on their performance and lose more points. A total of 30% is given for the year. If a student misses a test it’s usually unlikely now days the teachers will/can make time to reschedule time for the student to take the test, it’s after all an inconvenience to the teachers. This in turn also impacts a student’s marks. Testing and project totals are listed at about 30% as well for the total school year.
My son’s grades were low… due to all of this. Teachers can’t make time due to cutbacks, need to focus on other children because they are there. Helping those struggling is “Too much” of a strain on the class rooms settings but Teacher Assistants are no longer used in classrooms for Jr. or high school students. *it’s also due to budget cuts* BUT a child will STILL be passed on to the next grade. My son’s response when he got his low marks were… I got bored, there’s no point they are just going to keep pushing me along anyway. He’s right you know. WHY bother when the system is now failing the children who are in it. They don’t learn at a young age if you don’t try hard then you will fail. It doesn’t kill ANYONE to fail it happens in life ALL the time. BUT it may start killing older students who are depressed because they don’t have the support and help as they mature. They think they are stupid because no one will help them understand the work they are force fed and expected to catch on to at the same rate as everyone else. It’s the same theory of smarts given by Einstein, “Everybody is a genius, but if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live it’s whole life believing it’s stupid.” CHILDREN can’t be taught like this! My son is a walking calculator. He is a WIZ at math, BUT get him to read and he struggles. He thinks he’s not smart enough and this effects his behavior, his self esteem and more… Why? Because he’s expected to learn at the same rate like everyone else with the same materials. If he had of been held back he’d have learned more when it came to his reading but, nope the school system just kept pushing him along (or in our case dragging him as I tried to prevent him from being put ahead as I KNEW he wasn’t ready) his reading never improved and he still reads at about a grade 7 level… He’s now in grade 10… He cannot write cursive (it’s no longer taught in schools which is utterly stupid on behalf of the educational system considering people NEED to know how to write their signature)
Last year was the 1st year I was successful in retaining my son in the grade he should have been kept in due to his need for extra help. I had to FIGHT the school board to fail my son. They STILL wanted to pass him to grade 11… with an average less than 30… (MOSTLY due to the teachers lack of abilities to help him, support him or to notify me so I could intervene when necessary) They didn’t have the resources nor the patients to take a student they saw as “inconvenient” and work with him or myself. I was told… You need to get him into class more. YOU need to MAKE him learn/pay attention/get him to do his homework.
Um… I’m NOT his teacher when it comes to the stuff he receives from school. I can tell him to do his homework..and I do, but he can’t do homework he’s not received either due to missed time and the teachers not having time or not being ALLOWED to pass on missed work so he can actually LEARN something. I also can’t MAKE him learn anything when a school will pass/reward a child just for participating this is something the system created… LAZY children who don’t bother trying because they haven’t learned that if they don’t try they WILL fail. What I don’t get is this; YES there are some coddling parents who flip out over their kids not passing, but if their kids don’t try; how the hell do they expect to succeed in the future? And if there are parents who ARE aware their kids are failing why the HELL doesn’t the educational system SEE this and work with the parents, AND if the parents agree that their kids should be held back why they DON’T do what the parents ASK for… it’s not that damn hard…
“Elementary; my dear teachers, Elementary!”
My son is now 16. He’s back in grade 10. If he succeeds this year fantastic! If not he WILL try again. I WILL help him along. He WILL learn that he’s not going to be rewarded just for trying… He will learn that he HAS to put forth effort in order to gain what he wants. He will learn what it’s like in the REAL world; because in the real world failing is part of life, and a job doesn’t reward you for not trying, you get FIRED. I seriously think this is the reason why we have so many YOUNGER persons using the income assistance services so they can survive, they don’t have the education they need to get a job that will sustain them. They are stuck in a vicious cycle and why…Because some higher than mighty left winger who THINKS they know it all decided that failing a child in elementary school would hurt their self esteem didn’t think ahead on how a child who never learned to accept failure would fail to succeed in life in general as an adult.
It’s them I thank for creating our wonderful world where many kids feel entitled now days and won’t bother if they aren’t going to “Get something for just participating” Where those who are smart in one aspect pertaining to their education can’t get a head because they didn’t get the help they truly needed in other aspects of their education and were forced to endure feeling stupid all their lives. Where some kids who ARE smart (or smart enough) won’t bother in class because they KNOW they will get passed along anyway…
Our educational system NEEDS to be revamped… to suit not just the system but the parents AND the kids as well… so our children won’t have to struggle all the time through elementary school and then hit a 10 ton wall when they hit high school. It needs to be done now before we end up with more self serving teens who think they shouldn’t bother to do anything unless they are going to get rewarded just for sitting there on their asses doing nothing. It will create chaos in our future society… and now days our growing teens are causing enough chaos, we don’t need any more.