Mr. Lifson is living in his own little world, lashing out at everyone and everything that doesn't fit his personal image
of what public education should be. Consider this quote:
"But the sad truth is public education has never been a priority in this country."
Mr. Lifson, that's pure bunk, a gross mistatement of the facts, said, no doubt, in anger because of the circumstances in which you find yourself.
Long before the FCAT, there was concern about the falling graduation rate, caused by the very core problems you have identified, but refuse to accept as the real reasons for the problem. It's not Jeb Bush, nor George Bush, nor funding, nor the FCAT, because the problem was there long before they came on the scene. That problem is the ever increasing number of poor, parentless children entering the public school system. In the previous attempts to improve graduation rates, standards were lowered and social promotions were widespread. That's what caused the installation of the FCAT.
But you see, the ACLU doesn't care about education standards, nor do they care about why the rate is falling, they just want it to improve, using the only tool they understand - sue. They want a judge to edict the acceptable rate.
If more teachers, such as yourself, would truly come to grips with the social problems that are wreaking havoc in our public school system, rather than constantly deflecting attention toward funding and Bush family, some effective solutions might be forthcoming. But because of the nature of the problems, the school system alone is not capable of solving the problems.
Here's an example. Last week law enforcement in the state and county finally acknowledged that uncontrolled illegal immigration is one of the primary reasons for the increasing number of gangs, who are turning our streets and neigborhoods into places of constant violence. Now, do you suppose this may also be having a negative effect on our school system? With kids having kids, and some groups having over 80% of their children out of wedlock, with no father figure present, do you suppose that may have some negative effect on our school system? Mr. Johnson's proposal, which you referenced, is, in effect, an alternative school system for kids who refuse to behave in school. Where is the money coming from for this second school system? And what happens when those same kids refuse to behave in that system?
The solutions to these problems require organizations and institutions far beyond the public school system alone. And the sooner we all acknowledge that fact, the faster we'll get started trying to find some solutions.
Could not have said it better myself. It's time we make everyone more responsible for their own actions and choices. To blame Palm Beach County's School District for the failings of today's youth is obsurd.
They should sue the parents of any child that is failing and refuses to take an active role in their education. The youth in this county lack parental guidance not educational opportunities.
NYC Teacher of the Year. 1 of 40,000. Part of a speech he made when receiving the award.
That's the true purpose of all school boards...
The Purpose of Public School.
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