reply to post by cetaphobic
As a public school elementary teacher, I feel like I need to reply to your post. As you can tell by my post count, I don't talk much on the forums,
but every now and then a thread catches my attention and I feel the need to reply. I'm not trying to argue with you, because I'm not trying to
change your mind. I've read a couple, but not all, of the replies in this thread, and there is some major hate for public schools with some intense
accusations about it being similar to prison and the lack of care in teachers. I don't feel this is completely true. I mean, not every teacher is
like a prison guard, but some are. Not every teacher is good at their job, but I run into people daily that are bad at their jobs as well. I
understand public schools are an important topic, because they are teaching our future generations. I'm going to reply to your original eight
1. Public schooling does not pay good teachers. It pays administrators. New Jersey is the worst for this, but even in Michigan where I live, it's
bad. It's bad that all of my teachers drove lunkers but all the administrators drove brand new cars. And yes, I mean all of them.
It is true, teachers do not make the big bucks. However, not all teachers that I work with drive bad or cheap cars. I drove a 2 year old 350z for a
while. It's not the most expensive car ever, but it wasn't a clunker by any means. I easily afforded the payments, but had to get a family car when
we had a baby. Just before school let out, a teacher bought a new hummer. You are right though about admin. They drive much nicer cars and live in
nicer homes more consistently. But not everyone equates nice cars with doing well. Just because someone makes a ton of money doesn't mean they will
buy the most expensive car.
2. Public schooling does not teach students based on their own abilities and interests. Until you get to middle school, children are expected to all
be the same, no matter what.
I've taught 6th, 5th, and 3rd grade. In each grade there have been multiple students that had a curiosity about life way beyond that of their peers.
Just last year I had a student that would ask me a new question each couple of days about things she considered mind boggling, such as: What is
nothing? or How did people get here? I would do my best to answer these questions while keeping a dialogue going. I try my best to teach each student
as an individual. There are plenty of methods for teaching to a students abilities and interests, it just takes the right teacher to apply those
3. Public schooling teachers your children to perpetuate society's bad manners. They're taught that swearing, fighting and being a jerk is cool.
They're not properly taught by overworked and underpaid teachers how to be polite, or how to care about other people.
I've never taught that swearing, fighting, and being a jerk is cool. Our entire district has had a constant anti-bully campaign going for a long
time. Each morning in assembly the students would listen to clips about how to be a hero instead of a bully. That is just a small thing and definitely
not enough to teach how to care, but it's a step in the right direction. We had a Rachel's Challenge rally at the end of the year to celebrate being
kind to each other and doing the right thing. Students from each school carried thousands of chain links, each having a good deed or kind gesture
written on it that they observed. There's always going to be bad leaders in a group of kids, and unfortunately kids will follow bad examples.
4. Those children who do poorly in public school will never get proper help for it. They will be told to work harder without being taught how.
What about tutoring? That's all about one on one teaching how to succeed.
5. Those in public school overwhelmingly lack an understanding of even basic mathematics. Even those who graduate at the top of their classes.
I don't get this point. Math seems to have less importance sometimes, but the kids get basic math. I learned calculus before graduating HS. That's a
little bit beyond basic math.
6. Public schooling leaves your children with very little time for play, which is NECESSARY for the growth and true education of younger children.
True, there is not enough time to play. I try to give a lot of time for group activities and creative time that mimics play instead of lecture.
7. Public schooling punishes the best and brightest children by recommending they be put on ritalin when they question too much or, god forbid, get
antsy like children are supposed to.
It is actually illegal for us to recommend medication or diagnose children. I've had parents ask me before and I tell them I can't answer that, I'm
not a doctor.
8. Public schools and their teacher unions make it impossible to fire a bad teacher. Yes, as close to impossible as one can get.