Topic #266

Yes, it’s another post in the “I’m too lazy to think for myself, so here’s what Daily Post asks about” category. Topic #266 is

“If you could change how schools work, what would you change? What is wrong with how public education for kids is structured? What works well? What specific things about school do you remember, good and bad?”

I think I could sum up everything I would do for the school system with “More funding and better training.” I’ll discuss this a bit and then veer off into related subjects, like I usually do.

We’ve heard a lot about teachers this year. Often in discussions that had nothing to do with education, which I won’t address here.

A constant I’ve seen during my interactions with them has been the surprising amount of work they do on their own time, and materials they provide from their own resources. Add to that the constant scrutiny & criticism they face, and the general frustrations of working with children, parents, politics, and a bureaucracy. It looks to me like a job that really dominates your life, doesn’t pay very well, and has a lot of extra frustrations added on to the ones already intrinsic to the work.

I really doubt that a sizable fraction of teachers do that job for any reasons other than a love of teaching and desire to help future generations. It’s just too big a pain for me to believe otherwise. I gotta think that their hearts are in the right place and the biggest failings are a lack of proper tools. Hence: more funding, better training.

Teachers aren’t the only people who work in schools, and I extend that “better training” to include the administration and other employees as well. It probably says something about the blogs I read that hardly a week (and never a month) goes by without a new scandal at a public school appearing in my usual reading. Usually a First Amendment violation that could easily have been avoided with a couple of hours of training on the Constitution and the responsibilities it places on government entities like public schools.

There’s something else I’d like to touch on as well, and that’s a proposal I’ve seen in a few places to privatize the entire school system. This has worked well in some countries, and less well in others. In the United States, I kinda suspect it would end class warfare by handing a victory to the rich in a generation or two. But that’s a subject for another blog post on another day.

Until next time, take care of each other.

About Leo Tarvi

Mostly fictional.

Posted on October 2, 2011, in Daily Post and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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