Education is one of the most important things for any nation to look at. Many nations around the world are having trouble solving the problems in education today. Technology is moving faster than many people realize, and education in general is having a hard time keeping up with it. Now is the time for people around the world to take action at a high level.
One of the biggest issues with education is the cost of a college degree. There is no proprietary information that comes out of going to college. In fact, anything you learn in college can be found online for free. However, colleges are still charging high fees to go there to get a degree. This is resulting in a lot of students who graduate with record levels of student loan debt. Not only is this bad for them personally, but it is bad for the economy as well. Overall, countries need to find a way to solve this crisis in the future.
One of the best options for education in the future is online learning. There are a variety of online sites that set up courses for free for people who want to learn various subjects. Not only are these courses free, but they are a great way to learn a subject at your own pace. With all of the changes that are going on in the economy, now is the time to take action in this area to positively impact the future.
The Success Academy Charter School is creating a buzz in the world of education. Founded by Eva Moskowitz in 2006, the school is providing a new look at how children learn best. Serving students in low income neighborhoods in New York, the Success Academy partners with educational therapists and counselors to ensure the best possible experience for each child.
The Success Academy incorporates a philosophy that goes beyond teaching the core subjects or following a cookie cutter curriculum. With eighty minutes per day spent in a typical classroom setting, the rest of the day is used for interactive, tactile learning experiences. At the Success Academy, students learn about architecture not from books, but by “playing” with blocks where kindergartners design and build their own projects. By laying down a foundation in science, math and literacy earlier than in a regular school program, students become more confident in their own abilities.
The requirements to become a teacher at the Success Academy are a large part of why the program is working. Teachers must complete a four-week training course called T-School, where they are taught the methodology behind what they will be teaching. Eva Moskowitz feels it is important that her staff understand and support the school’s love of learning. Parents are required to participate in their child’s learning experience by actively engaging with the school and teachers. The Success Academy has an open communication policy between parents and teachers, and are encouraged to spend time with their child in the class room.
The test results at Success Academy prove that the school’s methods are working. State test scores have been in the top percentiles for New York for the past eight years. By subject, scores for math were in the top one percent, for English in the top two percent and for science in the top five percent. This is a direct reflection of the school’s approach to incorporating targeted learning in common core subject matter. The school continues to look for opportunities to add more locations in support of their educational mission to provide quality education.
One of the biggest challenges that parents, guardians, and aspiring students face is the thought of paying for college. While going to college is often considered a necessity for professional success, the costs of it have increased dramatically over the past few decades and the increase does not appear to the be slowing down. While saving for college is a long-term goal, a recent news article has proposed a savings plan that can make it seem a bit less daunting (https://www.nytimes.com/2017/04/26/business/calculating-college-savings-needs.html?_r=0).
The article believes that a good way to benchmark your savings is to have a goal of having $2,000 save for every age of your child. This assumes that you will send your child to public college. If you are considering sending a child to a private school, or a more expensive out of state college, then you should try to save $4,000 per year. This means that if you have a 10-year old, you should have $20,000 or $40,000 saved, depending on whether you want to send them to private or public college.
This assumption may seem very low compared to some other expert opinions. The main thought process behind this analysis is that you will only have half of the college costs saved by the time the child enters college. The balance of the education costs will come from your income, student loans, parent loans, scholarships, and any other sources of income that you may have. Setting this goal as a minimum could also help people to stay motivated to save.
In a recent court ruling, Judge Madeline Haikala ruled that a subsection of the Jefferson County School District, which includes parts of Birmingham, Alabama, would be able to secede from the larger district. This has raised the eyebrows of many due to the fact that the community in question, Gardendale, is over 80 percent white.
The judge, herself, is a staunch liberal with a long track record of finding in favor of liberal causes. But many view the ruling as marking a sea change in the way that the country views desegregation. Over the last 60 years, the program of federally forced desegregation, started by President Lyndon Johnson, has failed in almost all of its objective measures of success.
Some of the school districts where government intervention was particularly heavy-handed have never recovered. It is little known, but documented by numerous historians, that a large driver of the white flight of the 1960s out of the city of Detroit was due to the forced integration, including forced busing, of that city’s schools. Rather than send their children to hellish schools torn by gang violence, white parents simply withdrew from the city altogether, fleeing to the suburbs or other areas of the state entirely.
Similar incidents happened in Boston, Chicago and Los Angeles. In the case of the latter, there are presently almost no affluent whites in the Los Angeles Unified School District. That district routinely posts some of the lowest scholastic scores in the country and has been plagued by constant interracial violence.
The Jefferson County Public School District in Birmingham, Alabama has been on the wane for decades. The district is heavily black and has been plagued by low achievement, mind-blowing drop-out rates and a generally disordered atmosphere that one could be forgiven for mistaking with a county jail or rec yard at a state prison.
But recently, a federal judge, famous for taking extreme liberal stances on most of her rulings, has allowed a small subsection of the district, which is almost exclusively populated by whites, to secede from its failing parent district.
The Gardendale community will officially be able to form its own school district, completely removing all responsibilities to and relationships with the Jefferson County School District. This represents a tacit approval by the judge of resegregating the Gardendale schools. However, many observers point out that there are some nuances to the decision.
For starters, the Gardendale schools aren’t completely white. In fact, as much as 20 percent of the student body of the new school district will be comprised of blacks. But these aren’t ordinary blacks. They’re the upper middle class, many of whom have been the most vocal supporters of resegregation. The upper-class blacks don’t want their children attending school with their lower class black peers.
Another issue is the general backdrop of desegregation in the United States. Almost every single goal that was thought to be achievable with federally forced desegregation has turned out to be an abject failure. The racial achievement gap is as large as ever. And most school districts remain heavily segregated.
Recently, a federal judge allowed the community of Gardendale, Alabama to secede from the larger Jefferson County School District, a heavily black district beset by failing schools and budgetary trouble. Some have been disturbed by the fact that the Gardendale schools are 80 percent white, making the ruling a sort of official sanctioning of resegregation.
But the case raises serious questions about the state of the nation’s schools and the role desegregation has played in arriving at the current point. In city after city, desegregationist efforts, such as forced busing and district gerrymandering, have not only failed to more evenly integrate student bodies, they have caused the total withdrawal of whites from the public school system.
This has been seen from Detroit to Los Angeles. Heavy-handed government intervention to attempt to get the schools districts to integrate has left those same districts far worse-off than they ever were before the government efforts. In some cases, the school districts have effectively collapsed, as in the case of Detroit’s public schools. In that city, the public schools were among the best in the nation in 1960. By 2010, the school district was bankrupt and routinely posted some of the worst performance scores of anyplace in the United States, vying with some African countries for levels of scholastic failure.
To a lesser extent, this has been seen all across the country for the last 60 years. As government intervenes to get its desired social equality results, white families withdraw their children from the increasingly warlike schools, leaving them more segregated than when they started.
In what may be representative of a judicial sea change, a liberal federal judge recently ruled that a small town in Alabama would be allowed to secede from the failing Jefferson County school district. What’s so striking is that the town in question, Gardendale, Alabama, will produce a school district with almost 80 percent white students. The broader Jefferson Country School District is heavily black.
On its face, this would appear to represent the judge’s full-fledged sanctioning of official resegregation. While this may appear disturbing on first look, it’s necessary to appreciate the background of desegregation in American schools.
The original impulse to desegregate the nation’s schools came at a time of great hope for the future and giant strides being made in the furthering of Civil Rights for blacks. It was widely believed that the well known academic achievement gap could be solved by creating school conditions that were equal in every way between the races. This view was made all the more plausible by the near complete lack of data at the time. The radical social experiments, like forced busing, that would define the next 60 years had, at that time, never before been attempted.
Unfortunately, the federally mandated desegregation project of the last 60 years has been a spectacular failure. No longer can judges, educators and bureaucrats claim that these failed policies may have some merit. Trillions of dollars have been wasted and none of the goals of desegregation have been achieved. The jury has been in for years now, and judges are beginning to take notice.
Recently, a judge in Alabama allowed a predominately white area within a predominately black school district to secede. This is an unprecedented move in recent history. The judge herself even expressed concerns that the decision risks undoing many gains of the desegregation efforts the area has achieved over the last 60 years. However, observers believe that the judge’s decision rested heavily on the fact that the Jefferson County School District, at the center of the case, has performed so poorly that the judge was faced with the choice between allowing secession and facing rapidly declining enrollment from the affluent sections of the school district.
If so, this would be a tacit admission on the part of the judge that the desegregationist program has largely failed in Jefferson County, Alabama. But this is hardly surprising. While holding great promise for many at the start of the Civil Rights Era, desegregation in the United States has been an abject failure on almost every objective measure of what it was supposed to accomplish. With a total of hundreds of billions of dollars spent, today’s African American youth still show a persistent scholastic achievement gap with all other students, shockingly low graduation rates and general life outcomes that are considerably below that of all other groups.
What’s worse, desegregation itself has almost entirely failed. Between forced busing, billion-dollar social experiments like that of Judge Russel Clark, in Kansas City, and many other rotund failures, today’s American schools remain as segregated as ever.
While many believe that schools assign too little homework, blogger and mother Bunmi Laditan has had more than enough of it. In an email written to her child’s school, Laditan expresses exasperation at its homework regimen and its negative effects on her ten-year old daughter Maya.
She begins her email in no uncertain terms: “My kid is done with homework.” Lest you think that Laditan overstates her case or thinks that her child doesn’t need to succeed let her passionate tone convince you otherwise.
After listing a rather impressive list of her daughter’s intellectual interests and pursuits, she then asks why the school requires two to three hours a night. She criticizes the school’s turning her daughter into a “junior workaholic” instead of allowing Maya to spend time with her family and friends after a full day of school.
Her Facebook post has garnered 55, 000 likes from parents and educators alike. Her letter ends with the salutation “warmly” and it is not just a measure of politeness. Her email resonates because it reads as if it’s from a loving mother. She is genuinely concerned about the stress excessive homework is causing her daughter. “Work is not life,” she writes. Laditan strikes a chord with her audience because every parent knows how quickly the years pass.
Considering that Maya seems like an intelligent, hard-working student, Mom has a valid point. As she admits, education is important but a happy, relaxed child is more important; “My kid needs to be a kid.”
Following the surprise results of the 2016 Presidential Election, people across the world have been waiting to see the government’s stance on a variety of issues. One area that has a lot of people talking is the area of public education. This past week, the administration made several comments and decisions that show the direction that it will be taking the education system across the country (https://www.usnews.com/news/us/articles/2017-04-26/trump-seeks-to-shrink-federal-role-in-education-with-new-order).
This past week, President Donald Trump announce that Education Secretary Betsy DeVos would be looking for ways to change the way that the federal government involves itself in local educational systems. He has stated that DeVos has been given 300 days to find a way to change the way that the Department of Education is involved in school districts across the country. This will likely include reviewing the history of the Department of Education and determining which laws should be changed to reduce the impact that the Department can have.
Ultimately, the administration is looking to find ways to take the power out of the hands of the Department of Education and give more control back to the states and local education systems. This idea has been controversial overall, but welcomed by many people that believe that the educational system should be curtailed to the needs of each community it serves. Betsy DeVos is continuing to look for ways in which the Department of Education will be able to work with each state to develop a system that provides the educational support each community needs.