If You Think School Is Hard In America
This Blog is influenced by the recent discussion on
“Courageous Conversations Ask A Teacher” the
ongoing Real Talk about Real Issues in education
across our nation on Blog Talk Radio.
“COURAGEOUS CONVERSATIONS ABOUT EDUCATION”
‘Ask A Teacher’ “MOTHER’S DAY, “”REPLAY”
I wanted to reference the education of poor students
from India and the lack of educational support from
Black parents nationwide in America. Parents need
to accept their responsibility for the educational
success of their children and to help with educational
challenges in reading and math that Black children
face in schools. This is NOT to say all Black parents
are not involved, this is in reference to the millions
that make excuses for not attending parent and teacher
conferences, eating lunch at least once in the school
year and will not return teacher phone calls or notes
for parental support with disruptive and struggling
Teachers need parental support and parents need to
be actively involved in schools from Pre-K to High
As another school year winds down for students across
the nation, students are worrying about their opportunity
for graduation, promotion to a higher grade, possibility
to attend summer school and even the option to drop
out from public education.
The United States of America provides a FREE education,
supported by tax dollars generated from millions of
workers in numerous professions. There have been
educational think-tanks, educational conversations,
educational committees, and focus groups. The universal
ideology is that education is important to the economic
welfare of the people of the United States of America.
Important to the very economic foundation of this
country. The availability of a productive and progressive
work force that is consistently stable in providing
monies to support the financial, educational, business
and governmental foundation of this country.
“This country needs an educated workforce to compete
Diverse Education http://diverseeducation.com/article/11325/
The Internet is abundant with ideas, opinions,
suggestions and initiatives to support and strengthen
education. One important fact that cannot be ruled out,
eliminated or downplayed is that in this country education
is important. Nowhere else in the world is there an
educational system like the United States of America.
The foundation is based on parents being the “First Educator”
for their children. The importance of parents is stated as:
“Parenting involves taking responsibility seriously, taking
advantage of every opportunity to enhance children’s
learning, and providing children with challenges.”
Parents As First Teachers, Abelardo Villarreal, Ph.D.
In a recent conversation on Courageous Conversations:
Ask A Teacher on Blog Talk Radio, parental involvement
is crucial to student success, but too many parents do not
seem to understand or unwilling to take this message
seriously. In this country students can start school at
age 4, where developmentally children are blank slates,
they have been influenced by parents in understanding
that they must know the basics. This includes, but not
limited to knowing the alphabet from A to Z, counting
from zero to a minimum of 100, recognizing and under-
standing colors, knowing their full names, parents’ names
and sibling names. These are the basics that allow new
knowledge to be built upon.
Parenting responsibility is to teach and reinforce these with
children before they start school. As an educator of
over 20 years I want to share with parents that
interaction with children and the experiences that
are provided can guide children’s growth and
development. If children are taken to the library
teach them to read they will appreciate reading.
Children take to the museum they will appreciate
culture, Children take to science centers they will
appreciate science and technology. If you expose
children to educational opportunities they will
learn and grow.
Additional aids are in allowing children to ask questions,
parents plan the home environment with children’s needs
and desires in mind with books, magazines and Internet
learning sites. Not just games and videos, purchase toys
that are specifically designed to stimulate children’s
thinking and creativity. This encourages higher order thinking
and critical thinking skill sets.
Minority students must be exposed to learning as soon as
possible. Statistically they struggle in the critical thinking
and higher order thinking arena, not that they cannot use those
skills they are not exposed or presented opportunities to do
so. Matthew Lynch, Ed.D. stated that, “Education is the
cornerstone of success.” “Those who are educated have more
opportunity, tend to make better choices, and will go on to
teach their children to do likewise. Those who are educated
tend to give back to their community more than they take
from it.” Those that do not value education do not value life,
their communities and are involved in destructive behaviors.
Too many young parents do not understand their influence in
learning for their children. Parents, especially the growing
number of Black parents need to understand their responsibility
and accountability to teach their children before they start
in a traditional educational environment. Nationwide, 52 percent
of black males graduate from high school, which is compared to
78 percent of their white male counterparts.
This is not the schools total fault; parents
play a major role in this, seen in the “Urgency of Now” writing about
Black parents and their involvement in their children’s education.
The reality is those that do not get at least a high school education
will cost the tax payers of this nation. Students who don’t finish
high school earn less money: the Bureau of Labor Statistics, those
with less than a high school diploma earn an average of $451 per
week, compared to $638 for a high school graduate, and $1,053
for someone with a bachelor’s degree.
The least amount of education the higher rate of unemployment.
Students who have not finished high school are hit the
hardest, with unemployment. They have no marketable skills
to market and brand themselves. Parents must realize the nation’s
prisons have reached high incarceration rates. The largest
segment of those incarcerated being Black males. It’s estimated
by the Bureau of Labor and Center for Disease Control that
approximately 60 percent of those incarcerated do not have a
high school diploma or equivalent so cannot be employed.
The state and Not for Profit organizations are making money on
incarcerated Black males, this is equivalent to slavery. If
there is a time for people to come together in the name of
children and creating a better society the time is now.
Solutions need to include training and supporting quality
teachers, increasing parental involvement, high expectations
for success by students, early intervention in reading
and math programs, professional development for parents in
Parent Universities and a commitment by community support
Students who struggle with core subjects like reading and
math should not be placed in ESE or Special Education
programs, but modified learning using technology, tutors,
parent participation and communityresources.
Students in New Delhi, India their poorest children are learning
under bridges as the picture shows. Most of the children come
from poor villages.
Their children desire an education, but because of financial
responsibilities their parents cannot afford an education
provided by the government. American children receive a Free
education, so what is the excuse?
These New Delhi children for many of them are working to support
families, so instead of working to add to the family income education
provides these children with the tools necessary to overcome their
poverty.Stated by a student “Our teacher has told us that when
poverty strikes, you should open your mind, and that can be done
only through education.”
Black students and parents can learn from this important lesson
education empowers families. A teacher for the New Delhi students
states that his greatest achievement is changing the attitude of
his students’ parents. Many of them now encourage their children
Graduations will soon start cross this country,
this is the achievement of our educational system,
but what of the students that do not graduate, the
students that have chosen to drop out or those that
will receive worthless “Certificates of Attendance?”
Each generation meets with a challenge and education
is no different. The challenge is to increase graduates
with diplomas that open doors to higher education,
vocational schools and even military service. There
should be parental involvement from Pre-K to 12th grade
to make sure all students are successful.
Parents should not show up in mass just on graduation days.
If they want to celebrate the successes they too need to
work in the classrooms, at home and with visits to libraries,
museums and other educational opportunities. It takes a
village to teach a child, parents need to embrace their
responsibility to educate at home and reinforce education
that schools provide for free.
School Under The Bridge
“COURAGEOUS CONVERSATIONS ABOUT EDUCATION” – ‘Ask A Teacher’
“MOTHER’S DAY, “”REPLAY”