The No Child Left Behind act emerged as a result of a massive increase in the costs of schools, while failing to show an improvement in their students performances. (Paterson 32) Since these standardized test have been in effect teachers have been judged off them. The problem is that
Teachers shape the minds of students to realize what their purpose is in life. Lately, because of certain educational reforms, it has been hard for teachers to say what they need to say. “In 40-plus states, the math and English guidelines determine the knowledge students have to master by the end of each grade, what they’ll be tested on this year, and in many cases, how teachers and principals will be rated at their jobs once those test scores are released” (Strauss). Most educational reforms are adopting standardized testing and should be reconsidered. Statistics even show that since we have taken part in reforms like No Child Left Behind, Race to the Top, and Common Core State Standards math and reading are declining. These standards tell teachers what to teach and what the students should know by the end of the school year. The reforms also evaluate teacher performance by how well the students learn the information. Some people believe educational reforms should not be telling teachers how to teach their students, and others believe that the reforms are absolutely fine the way they are. However the truth is educational reforms are yet to be perfected.
Following the passing of the No Child Left Behind Act in 2002, US students have slipped from being ranked 18th in math in 2000 to 27th in 2012, with a similar decline in science and no change in reading. Standardized tests are unfair and discriminatory against non-English speakers and students with special needs [E. (2011, January 01)]. A 2007 national study conducted by the Center for Education policy revealed that since 2001, 44% of school districts had reduced the time spent on science, social studies and the arts by an estimate of 145 minutes per week in order to focus on reading and math while neglecting the other areas of study.
Adding just an extra ten minutes to each class, the new schedule would create the potential for students to have more homework time, lab time, learning time, and/or valuable free time to read for pleasure, relax with music, draw, etc. (Hadfield). Especially as students get older and more involved in extracurriculars and rigorous academic courses, the need for any spare moment to get assignments done, study, or even sleep increases. When this time is unavailable or extremely hard to get, students are more likely to fall asleep in class, miss school due to illness, misbehave, cheat, hand in incomplete assignments, or drop out altogether. The same is largely true for teachers. The more homework turned in by students, the more grading has to be done by teachers who are already exhausted from a long, often repetitive day of work. Therefore, it is important to emphasize the fact that this extra time should not be used to cram in larger quantities of learning standards or homework problems, but rather to enhance the quality of the already demanding school regulations that are in schools
Diane Ravitch, an “educational historian”, answers four questions in her book, Reign of Error. Is American education in crisis? Is American education failing or declining? What is the evidence for reform being promoted by the government and adopted by many states? What should we do to improve our schools and the lives of our children? According to Ravitch, the “crisis” concerning American education is actually a myth. In this book, she addresses myth after myth providing adequate clarity and information. She looks deep into the facts and brings to light what is actually happening in education in America in the following areas: test scores, achievement gaps, graduation rates, teachers and test scores, merit pay, charter schools, virtual school, government involvement of failing schools. In the latter chapters she offers specific solutions with detailed plans and recommendations to preserve and improve American education. Ravitch’s thesis is that American public education must be protected against government privatization and that we must work together to improve our schools. I couldn’t agree more with Ravitch. Government involvement in education has negatively impacted education since the passing of NCLB. Our focus has changed from being innovative teachers to cookie cutter teachers. Government officials should not make decisions without advice from educational professionals. We must all work together to make education work.
Over the passed fifteen years, the Bush and Obama Administration have cut spending in the education department dramatically. This translates into decreased pay for teachers, limited expenditures for each student, and limited expenditures within the classroom. This decrease in pay roll for teachers has even gone as far as laying off hard working teachers. With the contraction of spending allotted by the government, the absence of quality teachers has emerged resulting in the decline of student’s standard of education. The federal governments limiting budget has added to the universal achievement gap and should be attended to as soon as possible.
There are many problems in the American public education system today. Some of those include the quality of teachers, who have no real passion for the job, and are only allowed to remain in the position because of tenure privileges. Another issue is the state budgets that are allowed for public schools, with some states investing billions of dollars, and others prioritizing it lower on the list. In hot debate today is standardized testing, and the negative effect that it has on high school education, with the limits it places on teachers and what they have time to teach in the classrooms.
Though many feel that the American education system is a model of success, compared to the educational system of Finland, the American system is in dire need of reform. The focus of these reforms should begin with mandatory recess, teacher salaries, and high-stakes testing. Recess should be a necessary part of the student’s day. Teachers, who are the key to student’s learning, do not make they salary they deserve. Standardized testing is unfair because one test cannot determine a student’s ability.
The work it took us in two to three hours was more than what I had ever previously considered. While Americans have an outer view of teachers, and the education system; you only begin to understand once you have personally seen it from the inside. The salary teachers receive is observably low for such a demanding job. While some argue that they have the most vacation days of any job, they spend more time working annually than most other jobs . Statistically, teachers work 10 hours and 40 minutes a day on average. Which, when calculated means they work 53 hours weekly, this is 6 hours longer than the average work week . The changes that these teachers are requesting are not only realistic, but they would certainly improve education. If we brought back traditional teaching, teaching that didn’t come from a textbook. Then we would bring back a creative, intuitive
The function of the education system is to improve students education and prepare them for the real world. Students within that system should receive an “A” when they have mastered the information they are being taught. However, grades no longer accurately reflect how much students have learned. Since 1998 teachers have handed out more A-grades while the average SAT scores have actually fallen. In fact, as Greg Toppo states, an author for USA Today, the amount of A’s handed out actually went up close to ten percent (4). Students can manipulate their courses so that they can get good grades without actually learning much of anything. With grades not accurately representing what students have learned and charter schools failing to solve problehms, teachers need to change how they structure their class or grade assignments.
With these long school days children don’t have much time to go out and be a kid. By the time children get home and finish all their homework, there really isn’t much time for sports or spending time with friends and family. Long hours of school put too much pressure on students. According to the state, students are supposed to have three and a half hours of homework a night. Students are assigned about 17 hours of homework a week. There is a total of 168 hours in a week and 64 of those hours are taken from us by school and homework. Out of the 24 hours in a day school, homework, and sleep take 18 hours, which leaves students with just 6 hours to do things. Combine that with sports and after school activities, the average practice for most sports are 2 to 3 hours, which leaves the student with only 3 hours for themselves. If you add dinner into the equation which can take up to an hour ,then students only have two hours a day. Some students also have chores which can take up to an hour or even sometimes more. What can a student do with only 1 hour of time a day for their personal goals.
It's June, and another graduating class is hoping, among other things, to achieve high grades. Of course, "high" is a subjective target. Originally a "C" meant average; today however, the expectations and pressures to give and receive "A's" and "B's" takes its toll on teachers and students alike. This nullifies the value of the traditional grading scale and creates a host of entirely new problems. The widespread occurrence of grade inflation seriously affects the credibility of secondary and post-secondary education in America.
The year is 2012. In the movie Back to the Future II, two years from now, in 2016, Marty McFly travels from the past to save his family’s future. The future is almost upon us, and yet it would seem that our education system has changed little since Back to the Future hit theaters in 1985. “We still have same teachers, in the same parts, in the same schools, with the same level of knowledge, with the same equipment’s, and much the same standard of parental support” (David). Ironically, we have been steadily implementing policy after policy, increasing standards and accountability, promoting oversight and rule… the list goes on, and yet our progress seems minimal, our educators complain of underfunded classrooms, and our legislators complain of underperforming schools. The question of “how to improve our education system” is not getting satisfactorily answered because our system is not broken, merely underdeveloped. The truth is that America has made paces in improving its education technique or system; the problem that remains is for us to entrust our educators with the greater pliability and autonomy that they need to excel.
Public education in the United States is perhaps one of the most critical issues we face as a nation. Once pronouncing the United States as a “nation at risk”, the educational institution began to implement one reform strategy after another. In efforts to improve schooling for K-12 students, education reform has fiddled with class size, revised graduation requirements, and created standardized testing just to name a few. Unfortunately, traditional public schools are still failing to provide students with a quality education. This is disheartening as we learn that the United States lags behind in math and science compared to our international counterparts. It is safe to say that educational reform has spent billions of dollars over the
The teacher plays the most vital role in education, without their involvement, no learning would exist. Currently the qualifications for teaching are fairly adequate. One serious problem is the salary for teachers and how highly they are respected by society. As of now, garbage collectors and paid more than teachers. It's as if Americans want clean neighborhoods more so than they do educated children. Why should a teacher be compelled to teach if they don't get much respect for it? Most teachers are what they are by a choice and a desire to educate. Most garbage collectors did not chose to be what they are, it's just a matter of circumstances. Being a teacher is not a 9-5 job. Teachers may work from 9-4 or 9-9, they have a very demanding schedule and work different lengthy hours for the same wage. If teachers are paid more, they are likely to teach better.