Essay What Went Wrong With Americas Schools?

1500 Words6 Pages
What Went Wrong with America's Schools?      Education is the key to any countries economic success. For a country to be economically sound, the business and industry within that country must be financially prosperous. In todays high tech world economy, businesses and industries need well educated employees to prosper. Therefore, the deterioration of a countries educational system should be considered a major economic problem. Between 1965 and 1980, the performance of American students dramatically declined, the educational system fell backwards, and it is affecting todays schools, as well as the future of the US's work force.      During that 15 year period, US students' test scores…show more content…
Then, starting in 1960, there was a large movement of teacher's unions. By 1970, more than 50% of all teachers were members of one union or another. Today, around 75% of teachers are unionized. Teachers strikes, which were almost nonexistent before 1960, now seem to mark the beginning of fall. While the new unions help to give teachers more job security, higher pay, and pension plans, they often affected the educational process.      Another major change in the educational system was that schools began to become more centralized. This started soon after WWII. After the wars end, there were approximately 100,000 school districts in the United States. By 1970, that number had reduced to less that 20,000. The physical unification of school was not as important as was the financial centralization of schools, which began in the 60's. Before the unifications, local school boards raised about 60% of their own school funds, mostly with real estate taxes. The bulk of the rest of the needed funds came from state government. By 1980, though, local school boards were receiving 60% of their funds from the government and generated only 40% of their own funds. Those schools that received increased government funds first were some of the first to decline. This added to the theory that a schools performance is hindered by the bureaucratic controls over them that are less responsive to the school's and parents' concerns. As more money was
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