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Category Archives: student behavior

Looking at IQ and learning if the level of intelligence has anything to do with success: Part 3 of 3

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Using IQ as an indication of the odds of success may be measured from other comparisons besides race.

First—Let’s look at income (World Top Incomes Database; Real U.S. 2010 dollars):

Psychology Today.com reports, The average IQ of individuals in the top 1% who earned $857,477  was 137.  The next level was the top .1% with an average income of $3,693,111 and an average IQ of 149.  Then we have the top .01% earning on average $16,267,243 with an average IQ of 160.

The other 99 percent with an annual income range of $0 to $335,869 had IQ’s—on average—that ranged from 60 to 136.

Second—a few examples of the average IQ of college majors:

The average IQ of a Physics and Astronomy major was 133; Mathematics Sciences 130; Engineering 126; Chemistry 124; Humanities & Arts 120; Agriculture 115; Health and Medical Sciences 111; Education 110, and Social Work 103. For the complete list, I suggest you click on Statistics Brain.com.

Third—Number of billionaires by continent in US dollars:

Africa has 13 (population of 995 million—1 for every 76.5 million people)

Asia 412 (4.14 billion—1 for every 10.048 million)

Europe 390 (739 million—1 for every 1.89 million)

North America 486 (529 million—1 for every 1.088 million)

South America 51 (386 million—1 for every 7.56 million)

Four— Poverty and low IQ:

Ascd.org says, “The effect of environment on the IQ of young children can be significant, particularly for children living in poverty. As the influence of poverty decreases, the importance of environmental conditions as a limiting factor on intelligence also decreases. By addressing the environmental issues created by poverty, it may be possible to weaken the link between low socioeconomic status and poor student performance on IQ (and other) tests.”

“A childhood spent in poverty often sets the stage for a lifetime of setbacks. Secure attachments and stable environments, so vitally important to the social and emotional development of young children, are often denied to our neediest kids. These children experience more stress due to loneliness, aggression, isolation, and deviance in their peer relationships, and they are more likely to describe feeling deprived, embarrassed, picked on, or bullied. As a result, they more often face future struggles in marital and other relationships.” (Ascd.org says)

Psycnet.apa.org says, “It is posited that low IQ children may be likely to engage in delinquent behavior because their poor verbal abilities limit their opportunities to obtain rewards in the school environment.”

Leading from the Sandbox.com says, “Signs of poor EQ include the inability to listen to others, defensiveness, unawareness of how we come across, lack of sensitivity to others’ feelings, an inability to deal constructively with conflict, a drive to control others, narcissism, and the need to have our own way.”

Conclusion: The evidence suggests that average to high IQ—when a child lives in a middle income or higher environment with stable parents—does have a vital role to play in later success, but IQ by itself isn’t enough to predict outcomes.

It is also possible, but rare, for a child to escape poverty as an adult. The odds are also against children with IQ’s lower than average.

In the end—no matter the IQ; SQ; EQ or LDs—parent involvement is the key that overcomes almost all obstacles to a child’s education. A key study in the UK says:” Overall, research has consistently shown that parental involvement in children’s education does make a positive difference to pupils’ achievement.” (nationalarchives.gov.uk)

Based on 49 studies, It is noted that the bulk of the research finds that a positive learning environment at home has a powerful impact on student achievement. The second approach is illustrated by Rhoda Becher’s extensive review of parent education literature, which finds numerous studies documenting effects of school-based programs that train low-income parents to work with their children. Effects include significantly improved language skills, test performance, and school behavior, as well as important effects on the general educational process. The third approach is illustrated by studies of community involvement which suggest that the degree of parent and community interest in high quality education is the critical factor in the impact of the school environment on the achievement and educational aspirations of students. (eric.ed.gov)

When the parents are not part of the learning process; are dysfunctional and/or abusive, the odds are against success no matter what teachers do in the classroom.

Return to Looking at IQ and learning if the level of intelligence has anything to do with success in life: Part 2 or start with Part 1

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_______________________

Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran.

His latest novel is the award winning Running with the Enemy. Blamed for a crime he did not commit while serving in Vietnam, his country considers him a traitor. Ethan Card is a loyal U.S. Marine desperate to prove his innocence or he will never go home again.

And the woman he loves and wants to save was trained to kill Americans.

To follow this Blog via E-mail see upper right-hand column and click on “Sign me up

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Detachment: a film review and commentary on public education

My wife and I watched Tony Kay’s Detachment on DVD last week—a film that came out in 2012, with a substitute teacher as the main character. Henry Barthes was played by Academy Award winner Adrien Brody—who in the film struggles to keep others at a distance.

Henry’s mother was a sexually abused alcoholic who committed suicide when he was a child. His grandfather, who raised Henry, has dementia; lives in a home for the elderly and is haunted by guilt for sexually molesting his own daughter.

The schools where Henry substitutes are labeled failing schools by President Bush’s No Child Left Behind that—like President Obama’s Race to the Top—always places the blame on teachers, and the few teachers we meet in the film are burned out, depressed hulks. I can’t blame them, because I taught in schools for thirty years that were very close to the one we see in Detachment.

Detachment offers a depressing story that counters—with a serous dose of reality—the message we see in films like “Waiting for Superman” and “Won’t Back Down”.

“Waiting for Superman” was a 2010 documentary filled with half-truths and distortions that also had the benefit of a heavy marketing campaign. This propaganda masquerading as a documentary analyzed the so-called failures of the American public education system. When I saw this documentary, I left the theater boiling with rage.

I was also angry after seeing “Won’t Back Down” (2012) starring Viola Davis and Maggie Gyllenhaal—another film full of lies and distortions.

There’s a lot of information out there about the funding behind films like “Won’t Back Down” and “Waiting for Superman” that traces the money back to Hedge Funds and billionaires who have one goal: destroy public education in the United States and profit off the more than $1 Trillion in tax dollars spent by the states on public education.

Stephen Holden wrote a review of Detachment for the New York Times, and he concluded that “Ultimately, ‘Detachment’ blames parental indifference for everything: students who hurl profanity at their teachers, teachers who collapse in histrionic despair [I recall only one scene like this, and the character was played by Lucy Liu who was not a teacher but a frustrated counselor], and total classroom dysfunction. I also didn’t see “total” classroom dysfunction in the film. There were scenes where learning was taking place and the students behaved.

“Is it really this bad?” Holden asks, “Or is ‘Detachment’ a flashy educational horror movie masquerading as nightmarish reality?”

I’m going to answer Mr. Holden’s questions but first let’s meet this New York Times reviewer and learn something about him.

Holden is an older white man [born in 1941] who earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from Yale University in 1963. He worked as a photo editor, staff writer, and eventually became an A&R executive for RCA Records before turning to writing pop music reviews and related articles for Rolling Stone, Blender, The Village Voice, The Atlantic, and Vanity Fair, among other publications. He joined the staff of the New York Times in 1981, and subsequently became one of the newspaper’s leading theatre and film critics.

Nowhere does the Wiki piece mention that Holden ever worked as a classroom teacher, and I doubt if he grew up in poverty or lived in a gang infested barrio.

The New York Times should have had someone else review the film—someone like me who was born in poverty and taught for thirty years in public schools that were close to the high school depicted in Detachment.

Mr. Holden asked, “Is it really this bad?” My answer: It’s very close with an emphasis on very.

Mr. Holden’s second question: “Is ‘Detachment’ a flashy educational horror movie masquerading as nightmarish reality?”

No, Mr. Holden. I’ve attended many parent conferences as a teacher and usually only saw parents of the students who were passing my classes but saw few of the parents of failing kids. In fact, the fail rate in my classroom fluctuated between 30 and 50%. But on parent conference nights, I saw maybe 10 – 15% of the parents of my students. No parents attended the parent conference scene in Detachment, but it wasn’t far from the truth.

Detachment takes place in a community and high school that seems worse than where I taught for thirties years but not by much. Where I taught, burned out teachers usually left and the survivors supported each other but students I worked with behaved as a few of the worst students in the film did. I know, because I dealt with this type of behavior almost daily as a teacher. Teen gangbangers verbally threatened me every year, and I’ve known teachers who were physically attacked by students. I also was an eye witness to a drive by shooting while standing in my classroom doorway. And one night, while I was working late, a student on expulsion was shot dead by shotgun at point blank range a few feet from the classroom where I was working with several student editors of the high school newspaper.

Mr. Holden, if you had actually paid attention, you would have noticed that in the background there were kids who were not threatening their teachers; were not disrupting the classroom and actually paid attention and turned in work. Detachment’s weakness was focusing on the worst kids and ignoring those who were closer to average or normal, and the film focuses on a handful of teachers who were burned out.

We even see one young teacher working after school helping a student.

At the one meeting where the entire staff gathered there were many teachers in attendance who we didn’t get to know in the film. There could have been a better attempt to offer a balance but what the film shows is not a flashy educational horror movie masquerading as nightmarish reality—that description fits misleading propaganda films like “Waiting for Superman and “Won’t Back Down”.

A 2009, study out of Stanford sets the record straight. The study found that, on average, charter schools performed about the same or worse than traditional public schools. The Stanford study reported that 46% of Charter schools were the same; 37% were worse [which means 37% of public schools were better], and only 17% of the Charter schools were better.

In conclusion, I think Detachment is an honest film that shows the harsh reality of public education in an inner city high school surrounded by poverty and neglect. In no way should anyone think this is the way it is in the other 98,816 public schools spread across 50 states with 13,600 school districts that are run by democratically elected school boards made up mostly of parents. Trust me, concerned parents who are involved are not going to abandon the schools their kids attend.

If you learned anything from the Stanford study, 83% of the public schools are not failing and are equal to or better than Charter schools funded by vouchers.

Why should we punish all of the public schools because of the few that are suffering like the high school we see in Detachment? Instead, we should be supporting public schools that are seen as failing—not attacking and condemning them and their teachers as if they were prisons and the teachers criminals.

Added on December 24, 2013:
How do private schools compare to public?

This information comes from a study reported by the National Center for Education Statistics:

The goal of the study was to examine differences in mean National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) reading and mathematics scores between public and private schools when selected characteristics of students and/or schools were taken into account. Among the student characteristics considered were gender, race/ethnicity, disability status, and identification as an English language learner. Among the school characteristics considered were school size and location, and composition of the student body and of the teaching staff.

From the Summary:

For Catholic and Lutheran schools for both reading and mathematics, the results were again similar to those based on all private schools. For Conservative Christian schools, the average adjusted school mean in reading was not significantly different from that of public schools. In mathematics, the average adjusted school mean for Conservative Christian schools was significantly lower than that of public schools.

http://nces.ed.gov/nationsreportcard/pubs/studies/2006461.asp

Note: Why has Congress and two presidents, Bush and Obama, persecuted the public schools and blamed public school teachers for cultural problems they are not responsible for? Who gains?  Who loses?

_______________________

Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran,
who taught in the public schools for thirty years (1975 – 2005).

His third book is Crazy is Normal, a classroom exposé, a memoir. “Lofthouse presents us with grungy classrooms, kids who don’t want to be in school, and the consequences of growing up in a hardscrabble world. While some parents support his efforts, many sabotage them—and isolated administrators make the work of Lofthouse and his peers even more difficult.” – Bruce Reeves

lloydlofthouse_crazyisnormal_web2_5

Lofthouse’s first novel was the award winning historical fiction My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition]. His second novel was the award winning thriller Running with the Enemy. His short story A Night at the “Well of Purity” was named a finalist of the 2007 Chicago Literary Awards. His wife is Anchee Min, the international, best-selling, award winning author of Red Azalea, a New York Times Notable Book of the Year (1992).

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How does punishing teachers and closing public schools solve this, Mr. President?

In late 1970s and early 80s, I was hired to teach at an intermediate school considered at the time as the most dangerous school in California’s San Gabriel Valley in Los Angeles County. My first year there, before class, teachers teamed up outside the classrooms to search students for razor blades, broken glass, and other weapons.

Our principal was a Korean War veteran and several of the teachers were Korean and Vietnam War veterans. I was one of those teachers. That principal only agreed to lead the school if he could transfer soft teachers out and tougher teachers in. That’s why he hired me. Being soft doesn’t mean a teacher is incompetent. It just means they were not prepared to deal with tough kids like those you will see in the video that accompanies this post.

One year, six teen gangbangers came on campus to invade my classroom so they could kill a rival gangbanger who by the age of twelve had murdered several members of their gang. Fortunately for me, another teacher saw them approaching my classroom and took a bat away from one of them and then chased them off campus.

Most low performing schools in America may be easily compared to the challenges faced by the high school in the previous video, and for twenty-seven of the thirty years I was a teacher the schools where I taught fit a similar profile.

But President Obama’s “Race to the Top”—like its predecessor, Bush’s “No Child Left Behind”—demands that all public schools and their teachers are successful with 100% of all students and to have all students ready for college by age seventeen/eighteen.  Fail, according to that federal law, and you have failed the kids and will be punished by, for instance, turning education over to companies like Wal-Mart.

According to Helping Gang Youth.com, there are 24,500 gangs in the U.S. with more than one million members and 90,000 are serving time in prisons.  I taught gang kids who spent time in jail as teens. Released from a juvenile prison, those dangerous kids had to return to school where most of them had no interest in education. And each year, I was asked by a member of a teen gang what I would do if the gang jumped me.

In September 2013, The Washington Post reported that “21.8 percent of American children under the age of 18 lived in poverty in 2012, according to new Census Bureau statistics released on Tuesday. …

There are more than 50 million children attending public schools. Therefore one in five lives in poverty and one in fifty belongs to a violent street gang but these kids are not spread evenly across America. Instead, they are concentrated mostly in the big cities like New York and Los Angeles.

“According to this report from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development about the 2009 international PISA tests: Socio-economic disadvantage has many facets and cannot be ameliorated by education policy alone, much less in the short term. The educational attainment of parents can only gradually improve, and average family wealth depends on the long-term economic development of a country and on a culture that promotes individual savings. However, even if socio-economic background itself is hard to change, PISA shows that some countries succeed in reducing its impact on learning outcomes.”

I suggest reading the The Washington Post.com piece to learn what’s going on in those other countries that are dealing with this challenge—something the U.S. isn’t doing.

Teen street gangs and poverty are the problem—not failing schools and incompetent teachers. Bush’s “No Child Left Behind” and Obama’s “Race to the Top” offer nothing to solve these problems, but what these two laws did was to punish the public schools and teachers instead.

Hitler and his Nazi’s blamed the Jews for Germany problems after World War I and we all know what happened to the Jews. In China, during Mao’s Cultural Revolution, the schools were turned over to the students; teachers were persecuted by teenage bullies known as China’s Red Guard and some teachers committed suicide. The schools stopped working and a decade later only 20% of Chinese were literate.

How is this different from what America is doing today to its public schools and teachers? It’s time for our government to stop persecuting teachers and start supporting them. Do you really believe Wal-Mart—a company that contributes to poverty in the United States—is going to fix this?

_______________________

Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran,
who taught in the public schools for thirty years (1975 – 2005).

His third book is Crazy is Normal, a classroom exposé, a memoir. “Lofthouse presents us with grungy classrooms, kids who don’t want to be in school, and the consequences of growing up in a hardscrabble world. While some parents support his efforts, many sabotage them—and isolated administrators make the work of Lofthouse and his peers even more difficult.” – Bruce Reeves

lloydlofthouse_crazyisnormal_web2_5

Lofthouse’s first novel was the award winning historical fiction My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition]. His second novel was the award winning thriller Running with the Enemy. His short story A Night at the “Well of Purity” was named a finalist of the 2007 Chicago Literary Awards. His wife is Anchee Min, the international, best-selling, award winning author of Red Azalea, a New York Times Notable Book of the Year (1992).

To follow this Blog via E-mail see upper right-hand column and click on “Sign me up!”

 

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Are children really hungry to learn?

Chris Morris writing for Plugged In may have accidently revealed that all children are not hungry to learn—as some public school critics want us to believe.

Morris wrote, “You have to give school officials in Los Angeles credit for a good idea: put iPads in the hands of over 650,000 students to give them the most advanced learning tools available in an effort to boost their interest in academics.

“But the $1 billion plan is taking some heat after students in the nation’s second-largest school district cracked the tablets’ security settings to forgo reading, writing and arithmetic and instead post on Facebook and play games during class time.”

Morris was wrong. It wasn’t a good idea.

Do you really think this is going to work? “School officials, as you might expect, quickly confiscated the iPads and went to work improving the security settings.”

If hackers from anywhere in the world can break into the U.S. Department of Defense, do you think any security setting is going to stand for long? If you believe that, can I sell you some acreage on the Moon and Mars where you can build a vacation home?

“The U.S. General Accounting Office reported that hackers attempted to break into Defense Department computer files some 250,000 times in 1995 alone. About 65 percent of the attempts were successful, according to the report.” And on September 13, 2011 the Huffington Post reported, “Foreign hackers infiltrated the network of a defense contractor in March, stealing 24,000 military files in a single intrusion, Deputy Defense Secretary William J. Lynn disclosed Thursday.”

And that’s only two examples.

Kids want to play. Why? Because the average American parent raised the average American kid to feel good and have fun—and not to do the often boring work required to earn an education. Studies support this claim, and all the pressure and blame piled on teachers for kids not learning in school are not going to change that fact.

A report from csun.edu gathered data from 4,000 studies and revealed [click on the link to find more information from this report]:

3.5 = the number of minutes parents spend per week in meaningful conversation with their children

1,680 = the number of minutes the average child watches television per week

70% of day care centers use TV during a typical day

54% of 4-6 year olds preferred to watch television than spend time with their fathers

The average American youth spends 900 hours in school per year

The average American youth watched 1,500 hours of TV per year

Number of videos rented daily in the U.S. = 6 million

Number of public library items checked out daily = 3 million

“Millions of Americans are so hooked on television that they fit the criteria for substance abuse as defined in the official psychiatric manual, according to Rutgers University psychologist and TV-Free America board member Robert Kubey. Heavy TV viewers exhibit five dependency symptoms–two more than necessary to arrive at a clinical diagnosis of substance abuse. These include: 1) using TV as a sedative; 2) indiscriminate viewing; 3) feeling loss of control while viewing; 4) feeling angry with oneself for watching too much; 5) inability to stop watching; and 6) feeling miserable when kept from watching.” Source: Norman Herr, Ph.D.


Amazing example of a parent spending time teaching his children to read at a very early age.

_______________________

Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran.

His latest novel is the award winning Running with the Enemy. Blamed for a crime he did not commit while serving in Vietnam, his country considers him a traitor. Ethan Card is a loyal U.S. Marine desperate to prove his innocence or he will never go home again.

And the woman he loves and wants to save was trained to kill Americans.

To follow this Blog via E-mail see upper right-hand column and click on “Sign me up!”

 

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An Alternative to a School Suspension or Expulsion

I walked to town this morning to see The Family, a film with Robert De Niro, Michelle Pfeiffer and Tommy Lee Jones.

But this post is not about The Family. It’s about a Contra Costa Times headline I saw halfway to the theater about Bay Area schools suspending suspensions and turning to alternatives in place of suspension.

This issue is not new to me. I taught for thirty years [1975-2005] and for sixteen of those years I taught English, journalism and then reading at Nogales High School in La Puente, California.

At Nogales, we had a place to send kids who refused to cooperate in class and/or who continued to disrupt the learning environment even after being warned several times to stop the unacceptable behavior.

Sharon Noguchi wrote the piece for the Contra Costa Times, and she reported, “Pressed by law enforcement, civil-rights advocates and the realization that the way they disciplined students was failing, schools are keeping on campus more kids who talk back, throw tantrums or even threaten teachers.”

In addition, she wrote: “But teachers at schools elsewhere say taking away the option to suspend creates a disciplinary void and sticks them with rowdy or even dangerous kids in class.”

As a teacher at Nogales, I usually dealt with rowdy or dangerous kids on a daily basis. But I could not suspend even one of my students from school. I could send them to an in-house suspension center that was called BIC—meaning Back in Control or Behavior Improvement Center. I have no idea what BIC meant. I may have asked once but forgot. I like both options, because they are both true.

A certified teacher who was working toward an administrative credential was in charge of BIC at Nogales—most of the time. Nogales had about 100 teachers on staff and there were between 2,300 and 3,000 students [depending on enrollment], and BIC is where we sent the rowdy and dangerous students who refused to cooperate in class.

For example, I send students to BIC almost every day and they were usually the same students. The teacher in charge of BIC once told me that 5% of the students earned 95% of the 20,000 annual referrals to BIC—that would be between 115 to 150 students earning 19,000 of those referrals or 126 – 165 each.

The primary job of a teacher is to teach the subject he or she is responsible for. This job can take 60 to 100 hours a week and that time includes creating lesson plans and correcting student work.  When in class, teachers are involved with students and there is seldom any time to sit down and plan or correct. If a teacher teaches five classes for five hours a day for five days, that is twenty-five hours in class. The rest of the sixty to one-hundred hours is mostly spent planning or correcting work.

With an average class load of 34 students or 170 a day in five different classes, it is difficult to impossible to play the role of a therapist-parent replacement who is expected to undo the damage of dysfunctional parents and/or guardians who are responsible for the home environment that caused a rowdy or even dangerous student to become that way in the first place.

A teacher’s job is to teach the subject he or she was hired to teach and to make sure the annual standardized test scores teachers are held accountable for show improvement so the media and critics of public education will have less fuel to criticize the public schools and demonize teachers—something far too common in the United States.

If school suspension is not an option, schools must provide a place on campus where trained professionals deal with overcoming the damage caused at home and in the child’s environment. Most teachers do not have the time to do this.

For students who do not show improvement, he or she should be taken out of the home and sent to a juvenile boot-camp school where he or she lives in military style barracks with teachers and administrators trained to be tough disciplinarians—for example, modeled after a U.S. Marine Corps boot camp that doubles as a school. 

Every punishment or stick should come with a reward or carrot. The rowdy and/or dangerous child who earned his or her way into a book camp school instead of a suspension/expulsion from a regular public school must earn his or her way out of the boot-camp school with improved behavior, literacy, math, and writing skills.

And those kids who fall off the proverbial-behavior wagon in the regular classroom get sent back to the book-camp school automatically.

Oh, and I enjoyed watching The Family and can’t understand why the average fan and critic gave this film a SO-SO review as reported on Fandango.  I think they missed the point that children and even parents are a product of the environment they grow up in and life is relative to that fact—something that many in America elect to be deaf, dumb and blind to.

Discover It’s the Parents, Stupid

_______________________

Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran.

His latest novel is the award winning Running with the Enemy. Blamed for a crime he did not commit while serving in Vietnam, his country considers him a traitor. Ethan Card is a loyal U.S. Marine desperate to prove his innocence or he will never go home again.

And the woman he loves and wants to save was trained to kill Americans.

To follow this Blog via E-mail see upper right-hand column and click on “Sign me up!”

 

 

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Another educational fad invades an American school district: Part 5 of 5

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I wrote back to my friend and said what was happening in his/her school district was nothing new. During my thirty years as a classroom teacher—especially after standardized testing became one of the gods of  public education in the United States—what I call magic-pill programs like this Synced Solution thing came along and always promised to revolutionize education boosting the school’s standardized test scores.

And from my thirty years of experience, I can tell you that all of the magic pill programs teachers were often forced to use failed miserably—so bad that they often caused test scores to drop instead of increase—and a few years later these costly programs would be replaced by another magic-pill program.

I worked with some excellent principals and vice principals, but I do not have much praise for administrators who worked out of the district office.

In October 2000, The Los Angeles Times ran a piece about Education’s Failed Fads. The lead paragraph says, “Misguided and bumbled attempts to fix schools are nothing new, as education historian Diane Ravitch relates in painful detail in her new book, “Left Back: A Century of Failed School Reforms” (Simon & Schuster, $30). I recommend that you click on the LA Times link and read about all the failed education fads to see what I’m talking about.

It is obvious to me that Synced Solution is another fad that will fail mainly because a majority of the teachers were not allowed to be part of the final decision.

For example, there was the Whole Language Approach to teaching reading in the 1980s and 1990s—that supported the idea that children can and should learn to read text in the same easy, natural way that they learn to understand speech. But in Finland “reading instruction is intense in grades 1 and 2, and is uniformly based on teaching phonemic analysis and phoneme-grapheme conversions. Source: THE GLOBALIZATION OF EDUCATIONAL FADS AND FALLACIES

It was my experience that teacher generated programs worked best the same as many of the programs I developed for the almost six-thousand students that I taught over a thirty-year period. This is what teachers in Finland do and Finland has one of the best school systems in the world.

Finland’s public schools—that include a powerful teachers union—are among the best in the world. In the 2009 Programme for International Student Assessment — test scores:

Reading: Finland was in 3rd place vs. the United States at 17th

Mathematics: Finland was in 6th place vs. the United States at 31st

Science: Finland was in 2nd place vs. the United States at 23rd

Synced Solutions is nothing more than another popular, politically correct fad supported by another elected school board to be implemented by administrators with no job protection in a do-as-your-told-or-else educational environment adding another nail in America’s mediocre public-education system.

Return to Another educational fad invades an American school district: Part 4 or start with Part 1

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_______________________

Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran.

His latest novel is the award winning Running with the Enemy. Blamed for a crime he did not commit while serving in Vietnam, his country considers him a traitor. Ethan Card is a loyal U.S. Marine desperate to prove his innocence or he will never go home again.

And the woman he loves and wants to save was trained to kill Americans.

To follow this Blog via E-mail see upper right-hand column and click on “Sign me up!”

 

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The Price of Inflating Self-esteem: Part 4/4

By now, members of the Me (parents), or Me Me Me Generation (children of Baby Boomers) who might be reading this series of posts have become angry and may accuse me of being an idiot and even a racist for daring to say too many white parents have raised a generation of narcissists—about 30 million. Of course that leaves 50 million that were not raised by parents obsessed with the self-esteem of his or her child.

Here’s the rub, over a thirty year period, I saw it happening in my classroom. I don’t need the studies that Joel Stein refers to in his Time Magazine piece. I taught about 6,000 students in the public schools from 1975 to 2005. In the 1970s the self-esteem narcissist epidemic was just getting started and in the late 70s and early 80s, many of my students cooperated in the classroom, read the short stories, read the books and actually studied and worked.

Then we come to the 30 million, because if you are perfect, why read, why study, why work? If the teacher isn’t entertaining the students and students feel bored, why pay attention, why cooperate? And narcissists are very loud and sure of themselves—in fact, they are convinced that everyone else is wrong.

It may even be too late to fix what’s broken, because there is an industry that feeds this cult of self-esteem and it may be impossible to stop this terminal illness from killing our culture through narcissism.

But maybe it isn’t too late, because we don’t see this obsessive level of narcissism among most minority parents and children, and it has been predicted that minorities will be the majority by 2043. Maybe America’s minorities—along with the few white parents who aren’t inflating the self-esteem of their children—will save this country by not raising children to grow up and become sociopathic narcissists.

What has the price of inflated self-esteem been so far? To find out, I suggest you read Joel Stein’s piece in Time Magazine—the May 20, 2013 issue.

– a few facts for thought –

In 1950, the U.S. suicide rate for ages 15 – 24 was 4.5 per 100,000. These suicides were from members of the Greatest Generation born 1901 – 1945.

In 2005, the suicide rate for ages 15 – 24—all white members of the Millennial generation—was 10.7 per 100,000 (an increase of 238% compared to 1950), but for nonwhites of the same Millennial generation, that number was 7.4 and for Blacks 6.7 per 100,000.

However, for Baby Boomers, the U.S. suicide rate decreased in 2003 compared to 1950. In 1950, suicide for ages 45 -54 was 20.9 per 100,000 compared to 15.9 in 2003—the Baby Boom generation.

Note: suicide rates increase dramatically after age 45 but have improved significantly since 1950. In 1950, the suicide rate age 65 years and older was 30 per 100,000. In 2003, the suicide rate for the same age group dropped to 14.6 per 100,000. Source: Suicide.org

The Greatest Generation and the Baby Boomers were not raised by self-esteem obsessed parents. Therefore, has the cult of self-esteem practiced mostly among white middle-class parents of the Baby Boom generation caused the increase in suicides to more than double for white Americans born to the Millennial generation or is that just a coincidence?

Return to The Price of Inflating Self-esteem: Part 3 or start with Part 1

_______________________

Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran.

His latest novel is the award winning Running with the Enemy. Blamed for a crime he did not commit while serving in Vietnam, his country considers him a traitor. Ethan Card is a loyal U.S. Marine desperate to prove his innocence or he will never go home again.

And the woman he loves and wants to save was trained to kill Americans.

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