It Ain't Rocket Science

Mamacita says:  I know it’s not really possible to solve our public schools’ problems with a simplistic approach, but it does seem as if even a little common sense is sadly lacking somewhere.

Why else would schools put up with some of the behaviors and attitudes that seem to rule the school?

Why are certain sets of parents allowed exceptions and privileges for their kids, when other parents can’t seem to “win” no matter what they do or say?

Why are so many kids with dangerous behaviors allowed to sit by innocent, well-behaved children and terrorize them day after day?

Why don’t the well-behaved kids get any perks?  The bad kids certainly get a lot, even when they injure another child, do worse than just talk back to the teachers, and destroy everything in their path.

Why do communities put up with highly paid administrators and twelve principals per school when there aren’t enough books to go around and only one of the toilets on the first floor will flush?

Why are janitors who “don’t do vomit” kept on the payroll?

Why are secretaries who “don’t do computers” still sitting in the office?

Why are teachers who don’t grade anything, who have poor basic skills, who can’t construct a simple sentence, who dress like skanks and bums and bag ladies, and whose personal lifestyles are not good examples for young people, in our classrooms at all?

Why do communities build four full-size gymnasiums yet don’t seem to care that their classrooms are stuffed so full of kids that there isn’t room for that many desks?

Why do we as a society allow the lowest common denominator to be the privileged group?

Why are our educators no longer permitted to show small children the affection and love that they so badly need, for fear of misinterpretation?

Why have standardized tests and the drill “necessary” to score big on them, become more important than encouraging the love of actual learning?

Why are students who refuse to do any work at all no longer given the zeros they so rightfully deserve?  Some little kids have to work really hard to get a 60%, and here are these willful losers being gifted with points?  Wrong.  Wrong, wrong, wrong.

Why do we not rid our schools of those who present a danger to the kids who truly want to learn?  Why do we put up with it?

Why are the same kids allowed to disrupt and spoil and ruin the learning experience for the good kids, day after day, year after year?  Why do we allow it?  Why are we afraid to do anything about it?  Why is the self-esteem (don’t get me started!) of a dangerous disruptive kid with no citizenship skills whatsoever more important than the safety, education, and self-esteem (it’s real only if it’s EARNED) of a nice kid?

I’m not finished.  I’ve got more.

And it just seems to me that it ain’t rocket science to realize that the inmates have taken over the institution, those who pull in the highest salaries don’t give a tinker’s dam about genuine education, and the badly-behaved kids are valued more than the sweet kids.  Say it’s not true all you want; I think most schools are afraid to take back the order they once had for fear of losing state and federal money, being sued by “those” parents, and being labeled “politically incorrect.”

Which, as far as I’m concerned, is a big wad of batshit crazy.


Comments

It Ain't Rocket Science — 34 Comments

  1. Wow!

    I mean that in a good way!

    Our educational system has definately thrown the baby out with the bathwater. I don’t allow a child to hold the entire classroom hostage and I have the utmost respect for the teachers of my own children who do the same. It’s monumentally difficult.

    I remember the days of my youth when a disruptive child would be sent to the office or made to sit in the hall (timeout in the olden days). That way, 25 kids could learn their times tables. The one in the hallway could either shape up, come back and learn–or not.

  2. Wow!

    I mean that in a good way!

    Our educational system has definately thrown the baby out with the bathwater. I don’t allow a child to hold the entire classroom hostage and I have the utmost respect for the teachers of my own children who do the same. It’s monumentally difficult.

    I remember the days of my youth when a disruptive child would be sent to the office or made to sit in the hall (timeout in the olden days). That way, 25 kids could learn their times tables. The one in the hallway could either shape up, come back and learn–or not.

  3. Sometimes you have to segregate the gifted kids. I wish my older son had been. He was well-behaved and could score As and Bs without trying. His elementary school teachers loved him and they never pushed him. I mistakenly thought everything was great. Then he hit middle school. Rather, middle school hit him. He nearly failed out of 6th grade. He’s in seventh and I review his homework every night. He’s on restriction when his grades drop below Bs. He’s gotten a lot of restriction, but I have to be the one with teeth, because some of his teachers are letting him skate again. I sometimes think his math teachers are being unnecessarily punitive, but it’s better that he learn now that some teachers, especially college instructors, are very particular about the way the work is turned in, not just that the answers are correct.

    My younger son is now being pushed by his teachers, with my permission. He’s being given higher-level math and reading work to do. Instead of being bored and acting out, he’s proud of the fact that only he and one other student are being given this work. It also means that as long as he is doing well, his teachers allow him more independent work time.

    A smart, bored child is a problem. They either cause problems at school or for themselves.

  4. Sometimes you have to segregate the gifted kids. I wish my older son had been. He was well-behaved and could score As and Bs without trying. His elementary school teachers loved him and they never pushed him. I mistakenly thought everything was great. Then he hit middle school. Rather, middle school hit him. He nearly failed out of 6th grade. He’s in seventh and I review his homework every night. He’s on restriction when his grades drop below Bs. He’s gotten a lot of restriction, but I have to be the one with teeth, because some of his teachers are letting him skate again. I sometimes think his math teachers are being unnecessarily punitive, but it’s better that he learn now that some teachers, especially college instructors, are very particular about the way the work is turned in, not just that the answers are correct.

    My younger son is now being pushed by his teachers, with my permission. He’s being given higher-level math and reading work to do. Instead of being bored and acting out, he’s proud of the fact that only he and one other student are being given this work. It also means that as long as he is doing well, his teachers allow him more independent work time.

    A smart, bored child is a problem. They either cause problems at school or for themselves.

  5. Elaine….sounds like my period 7 class…..bravo for how you are dealing with them ! Sort of a tiered assignments type of approach.

    Mamacita/Jane…..you be still singing to the chorus. I have yet to hear our soon to be President saying anything about changing the environment of our public schools. If you got all these trouble making kids out of whatever schools they are infesting, then those schools will be better and the good kids will learn and test scores will go up. Maybe you should write to him (or call???) and put in to be his education Tsarina ?

    Maybe someday, the rights of the majority will be more important than the rights of a few a-h’s.

  6. Elaine….sounds like my period 7 class…..bravo for how you are dealing with them ! Sort of a tiered assignments type of approach.

    Mamacita/Jane…..you be still singing to the chorus. I have yet to hear our soon to be President saying anything about changing the environment of our public schools. If you got all these trouble making kids out of whatever schools they are infesting, then those schools will be better and the good kids will learn and test scores will go up. Maybe you should write to him (or call???) and put in to be his education Tsarina ?

    Maybe someday, the rights of the majority will be more important than the rights of a few a-h’s.

  7. Kids will be kids, but a lot of the trouble at Our Humble High School is that Teachers want to be Kids, too! BTW, I’m a finalist for a Pretty Neat Blog Award. Sure would appreciate your vote! Please come by to see me to get the details. Thanks!!

  8. Kids will be kids, but a lot of the trouble at Our Humble High School is that Teachers want to be Kids, too! BTW, I’m a finalist for a Pretty Neat Blog Award. Sure would appreciate your vote! Please come by to see me to get the details. Thanks!!

  9. My goodness, I feel fortunate to have gone to the small rural high school I attended! It was pretty wonderful, even though I didn’t know it then. I didn’t get nearly the education I could have if my parents had had the money or knowledge required to educate me in a different way, but it was a pretty good education all the same. There were problems (sometimes I was one of them), and maybe I was sheltered from the way the rest of the school worked by being put in the gifted program. I’m not sure I approve of segregating the more capable students, but from what you and other teachers say, it may just be necessary to save them from the incapable/unmotivated ones. I’m homeschooling my own 3, but it’s certainly not because I question the quality of my own education. I’m just afraid they won’t be so lucky!

  10. My goodness, I feel fortunate to have gone to the small rural high school I attended! It was pretty wonderful, even though I didn’t know it then. I didn’t get nearly the education I could have if my parents had had the money or knowledge required to educate me in a different way, but it was a pretty good education all the same. There were problems (sometimes I was one of them), and maybe I was sheltered from the way the rest of the school worked by being put in the gifted program. I’m not sure I approve of segregating the more capable students, but from what you and other teachers say, it may just be necessary to save them from the incapable/unmotivated ones. I’m homeschooling my own 3, but it’s certainly not because I question the quality of my own education. I’m just afraid they won’t be so lucky!

  11. You know you are preaching to the choir, right? It the parents of those unholy terrors that need to be reading this blog. Do you think I’d catch some flak if I sent that message home with the progress reports of a certain few chronic disrupters?

  12. You know you are preaching to the choir, right? It the parents of those unholy terrors that need to be reading this blog. Do you think I’d catch some flak if I sent that message home with the progress reports of a certain few chronic disrupters?

  13. As a student who was thrown into the midst of an unruly class in Middle School, and High School, I have to say, what about us that liked learning?

  14. As a student who was thrown into the midst of an unruly class in Middle School, and High School, I have to say, what about us that liked learning?

  15. Don’t write a book, Mama, write legislation! Or heck, just write down some directions! I don’t know where one goes to make a difference when it comes to education, but I bet you do. I’m open to suggestions – where does one go to get in the fight to make public education excellent?

  16. Don’t write a book, Mama, write legislation! Or heck, just write down some directions! I don’t know where one goes to make a difference when it comes to education, but I bet you do. I’m open to suggestions – where does one go to get in the fight to make public education excellent?

  17. So, so true, Mamacita. And I agree with Melissa and BadMommy, you really should think about writing a book. So many people need to hear what you have to say.

  18. So, so true, Mamacita. And I agree with Melissa and BadMommy, you really should think about writing a book. So many people need to hear what you have to say.

  19. Jane, write a book. Please, I beg of you, WRITE A BOOK. If you wrote a book that just contained all of your blogposts about education, it would be a must-read big-seller, because lady, you know what you’re talking about and you’re not afraid to say it.

    Write a book. Pretty please!!!

  20. Jane, write a book. Please, I beg of you, WRITE A BOOK. If you wrote a book that just contained all of your blogposts about education, it would be a must-read big-seller, because lady, you know what you’re talking about and you’re not afraid to say it.

    Write a book. Pretty please!!!

  21. This should make you feel better…

    I teach in middle school. My 3 classes of 8th graders were horrid brats, mostly because of a select 6 or 7 (per class), that the administration would do NOTHING about.

    So I got tough. No-one gets in the classroom door without putting EVERYTHING in their bag except for ONE sheet of blank paper, one pen OR pencil, and their agenda. No writing is permitted on their hands, and all bracelets need to be removed. Pockets are emptied. (We have school uniforms, so clothing isn’t usually an issue.) Bags are left on/under/next to the table near the door. Students have NO access to them during class.

    They come in, sit down, and start copying the day’s notes off the board. I spend the period going around to every student, give them *individual* attention, and make sure they understand the work. When they are done with the notes, they turn their paper over and start the day’s homework. There is NO talking except between me, the student I am working with, and a few students (well-behaved, of course) that I have given explicit permission to talk.

    ANY kind of misbehavior gets 1 warning, and then IN FRONT OF THE CLASS the student (and I) call and talk with parents, and schedule a 1 hr after school detention. The first two days, I had long lines at the phone.

    Day 3 – 30: NOTHING. No calls, no AS detention, 100% homework completion, 95% nightly parent signatures on the homework. (I have had some parents complain about me to the administration. However, I could show that ALL the kids are doing better as a result, so my butt was saved. When the kid who’s mommy is complaining is getting a B+, and all their work in, after having earned a 30% UNTIL that point… I win.)

    Wish me luck, though. Lost my voice 2 days ago, so I decided to take today off to try to get it *back*. This is their first sub. We’ll see how it goes…

  22. This should make you feel better…

    I teach in middle school. My 3 classes of 8th graders were horrid brats, mostly because of a select 6 or 7 (per class), that the administration would do NOTHING about.

    So I got tough. No-one gets in the classroom door without putting EVERYTHING in their bag except for ONE sheet of blank paper, one pen OR pencil, and their agenda. No writing is permitted on their hands, and all bracelets need to be removed. Pockets are emptied. (We have school uniforms, so clothing isn’t usually an issue.) Bags are left on/under/next to the table near the door. Students have NO access to them during class.

    They come in, sit down, and start copying the day’s notes off the board. I spend the period going around to every student, give them *individual* attention, and make sure they understand the work. When they are done with the notes, they turn their paper over and start the day’s homework. There is NO talking except between me, the student I am working with, and a few students (well-behaved, of course) that I have given explicit permission to talk.

    ANY kind of misbehavior gets 1 warning, and then IN FRONT OF THE CLASS the student (and I) call and talk with parents, and schedule a 1 hr after school detention. The first two days, I had long lines at the phone.

    Day 3 – 30: NOTHING. No calls, no AS detention, 100% homework completion, 95% nightly parent signatures on the homework. (I have had some parents complain about me to the administration. However, I could show that ALL the kids are doing better as a result, so my butt was saved. When the kid who’s mommy is complaining is getting a B+, and all their work in, after having earned a 30% UNTIL that point… I win.)

    Wish me luck, though. Lost my voice 2 days ago, so I decided to take today off to try to get it *back*. This is their first sub. We’ll see how it goes…

  23. I am constantly amazed at the way things are being run at my daughter’s high school. They have a weight/work out room that rivals any NFL team and even plan days to close the school so the team, band, and cheerleaders can go to away games. They missed two days for a HURRICANE this year, yet still had the days off from school for away games. They had to make up those missed days on their Thanksgiving break.

    My son is in 4K and has been diagnosed with ADHD. What that means for his future with school and education scares me to death. What battles do I have in front of me……

    Good post.

  24. I am constantly amazed at the way things are being run at my daughter’s high school. They have a weight/work out room that rivals any NFL team and even plan days to close the school so the team, band, and cheerleaders can go to away games. They missed two days for a HURRICANE this year, yet still had the days off from school for away games. They had to make up those missed days on their Thanksgiving break.

    My son is in 4K and has been diagnosed with ADHD. What that means for his future with school and education scares me to death. What battles do I have in front of me……

    Good post.

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