Schools are failing the kids

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  #1  
Old 10-13-04, 06:09 AM
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Schools are failing the kids

I am not real happy with the way the schools are getting "passing grades" from from their respective State Boards. 2 years ago the pass/fail percentage was changed from 70% to 60%. I don't believe lowering the bar is the way to graduate more students. Floridas FCAT test is a joke. The kids study strictly for this test for 2 weeks and if they fail it, their grades for the rest of the year don't count as they "have" to pass FCAT. Here in Arkansas my stepson failed Reading, Math, and Spelling last year.They promoted him to 7th grade (DUH). This year I am fighting his school because I found out they are "adjusting" his grades to "help" him. Sorry, but I don't believe that giving him 19 percentage points so he could get a low "D" is proper. One thing I will say for teachers , they really seem to be trying but the Administrators have the last say.
 
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Old 10-13-04, 07:05 AM
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Actually the PARENTS have the last say. They are the ones who elect the school board members and legislators who oversee the administrators. Unfortunately, concerned parents like you and me are in the minority. The reason the bar keeps getting lowered is usually because of pressure from the kind of parents who couldn't name half of their kids' current subjects, much less have ever met the teachers, something my wife and I do every year religiously. Unfortunately, the loudest voices are not always the wisest.
 
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Old 10-13-04, 10:44 AM
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BRAVO, TG!

I am seriously getting sick of the bars getting lowered in this country. They need to be RAISED.

I'm only 27, not that much older than a teen, and I have to say that the kids coming up have got to be the most uneducated I have ever seen. And it's not entirely their fault.

Kids get homework their parents can't help with so what do the parents do? Complain that the homework is too tough! ARGH!

Chris
 
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Old 10-13-04, 10:49 AM
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The pathetic schools notwithstanding, you could teach him these subjects on your own.
 
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Old 10-13-04, 11:16 AM
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What the so-called educators don't understand (or don't care about) is that out here in the REAL WORLD, no one GIVES you anything. My kids (13 and 16) get mad because I refer to a couple years down the road when they need the education they never got.
 
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Old 10-13-04, 11:19 PM
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I found a solution to helping my children with subjects that I don't understand. I am back in school myself.

Going to college has provided so many solutions aside from me learning what they're learning today (we are study buddies in many subjects) but I also have access to so many students that are willing and able to help tutor my children (me sometimes, too!).

I have also talked to my children's teachers about what all I can do to help my children learn. They send home notes about what my children are studying so I can help them research and I can find additional ways to teach these same things to my children in ways they may not understand at school (by relating it to things that they know about or like).

This is working with my 12yo son who is now making A's and B's after making F's and falling asleep in class. Now I just need help working on his attitude LOL.

Kay
 
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Old 10-14-04, 05:58 AM
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My kids school has teachers e-mail address' and a homework hotline so I can see what their homework is. Sounds good huh? Welllll...I find it strange that neither of my kids have homework (ever) and that the classes they have a problem with has a teachers e-mail problem (claim they don't receive it). Ended up calling the principals of each kid to schedule conferences.
NOTE: E-mail addresses mysteriously started working after calling the Principal.
 
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Old 10-14-04, 08:53 AM
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E-mail is nice, but it is hard to beat a personal encounter.
 
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Old 10-14-04, 09:06 PM
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Chris,

You are right, the personal encounter is the best. However, as majakdragon was saying, emails are nice, too! After meeting with teachers I exchanged email addresses.

Its so nice to get any extra information I might need for my children's assignments that they may not remember (more than likely not telling me). I also have it set up with all the kids' teachers that assignments have to be signed by me. Especially in the 5th grade, they have assignment cover sheets that detail what has to be accomplished and by when (projects). I get two copies. One to keep, the other to be signed and returned to the teacher.

My 17yo skipped school so many times last year that she failed. This year she can barely go to the bathroom without having permission from me or the principal. She is finally grasping the fact that I must have her progress reports every Friday and they have to be returned to the principal on Monday. She's done cafeteria work a few times this year already for not doing that. She also is catching on that no one can call and have her checked out. There are only 3 of us on the checkout list, too. In case of a dire emergencies and someone else has to pick her up then I have a passcode that I call with, but I have to call the principal. She's not happy with all this, but she is in school this year and making average grades. For once, this child is passing.

I thought setting all this up would be a major pain, but it has actually made my life easier and the schools are more than happy to work with me.

There are still times that I have to set up an appt to see a teacher when I don't understand the work a child has and can't help them. The teachers are more than happy to spend a little time with me to help me learn it so I can teach (help teach) it to my children. This way my child doesn't get left behind and the other children don't have to slow down for my child either.

Thanks for posting! I love hearing how other parents are dealing with their children's education. Hints, tips and suggestions are MOST welcome!

Kay
 
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Old 10-15-04, 07:47 AM
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Chris, I also agree that a personal meeting is better however we are currently a one vehicle family and wife works days so I have to depend on e-mails and phone. My major gripe is the weird answers or none at all I get to my queries. I have been told by the teachers that effectively use e-mails that I am in the low percentage of parents that even care. All I want is for my kids to get an education, not merely be passed to get rid of them. I don't want them flipping Big Macs when they can't even READ the menu board.
 
  #11  
Old 10-16-04, 08:09 PM
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Parental involvement

Follow kaybyrd's lead. She had been on the forums for the past few years and everyone has shared her parenting problems and positive directions for overcoming them. Schools are not used to parental involvement after elementary school because parents tend to drop out.

Thus, those parents who properly remain involved can often get pushed aside and problems go unresolved because staff tends not to know how to deal with involved parents. Work closely with principal, teachers, guidance counselors and professionals as required. Stay involved. If you do not get the answers you want, attend board of education meetings. If required, get yourself on the agenda. Become actively involved in your school system. Find out why your kid is not performing to expected levels.
 
  #12  
Old 10-16-04, 10:15 PM
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http://arkedu.state.ar.us/curriculum/frameworks.html

majakdragon,

I'm not sure if that link will help you, but maybe you can check to see where your child(ren) is/are expected to be at a certain timeframe in the school year. I relied heavily on this information (Tenn at the time) while homeschooling my children. I will check into mine as well so maybe it will help my children even more.

I have two children that seem impossible to help in school. I didn't give up and have spent hours talking to the principals, counselors, attendance officers, etc. I've even talked to the juvenile specialist on our police force here.

Talking to the principal has been the most effective route. Teachers, some but not all, tend to get defensive when parents try to get involved. Unfortunately there are many parents that only get involved so they can point the blame at the teachers/system instead of using the tools to help their children where the teachers/system can't.

My 17yo skipped school so many times that she has to have my permission to leave class to go to the bathroom. Not really, but close. She has to turn in progress reports to me every week, and she has to pick those up from the principals office on Fridays, in a sealed envelope. I have to sign the envelope and she has to return it to him on Monday morning. If not, then I get a phone call AND so does my SIL. Her report cards gets mailed to my SIL's house so she can't grab them out of the mailbox. This way phone numbers can't be changed to cellphone's of friends (she had her cellphone listed as the contact number for awhile - no one know hows that happened?)

It sounds as though this has taken a lot of time. Not really. Just a day at the school rotating between personnel making sure that everyone was on the same page. By the end of the day we had a solid game plan and a united front to protect this child from herself. Now I don't have to spend near as much time with her (watching and setting her straight when she strays from school) and can focus on the other aspects of her life as well. In short: it has made my life easier.

Lately I either haven't the time to post of my children in crisis or there hasn't been much lately. We did have one huge drama this summer that lasted about, oh a week LOL. DD wanted to live with my mom, then changed her mind. She wasn't happy when she got back here. I had removed her door and taken all things out of her room except for her most basic things. Long story as to how it led to all that, but she has turned around and earned most of her things and priveledges back within a few months.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Kay
 
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