Tag Archives: High school

Debating about the “Educated Elite” – Part 1/2

An “old” friend, a libertarian, evangelical conservative that may agree with what  the Sovereign Citizen movement preaches ( Sixty Minutes on May 15, 2011 ), sent me two links disparaging college education failing to educate good citizens.

I did not agree with the evidence he submitted.

The video link he sent was of college students claiming to support freedom of speech but wanting to ban conservative talk-show hosts Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck from both radio & TV (the video was filmed at CSU Fresno).

How do we define the term “educated elite”?

Is being a student at a college or university enough to be considered among the “educated elite”?

I don’t think so, since many students that start college don’t finish.

Only a “fool” would call a college student that may fail all or most of his or her classes then drops out of college a member of the “educated elite”.  Attending college doesn’t automatically make someone a member of the “educated elite”.  You have to graduate first and get a job that pays well, which I will talk about in more detail in Part 2.

How many students graduate from college and have a chance to join the “educated elite”.  Remember, graduating isn’t enough to achieve the status of “educated elite”.

“At public colleges and universities only 29.0% of students graduate in the traditional four-year time frame.

“Of course, the timeframe most used to discuss graduation rates is the six-year window. This timeframe appears to be used because here graduation rates pick up substantially. At public schools the percentage of students that graduate within six years nearly doubles to 54.7%.

“One might think those more expensive private, non-profit schools would have significantly better numbers. They do in fact have better numbers but given their overall selectivity the rates continue to be extremely disappointing.

“Over the four-year timeframe, we see that private schools graduate 50.4% of their students, a number that nearly mirrors the six-years of public institutions.” Source: Open

Continued on May 30, 2011 in Debating about the “Educated Elite” – Part 2


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

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!”


Posted by on May 29, 2011 in Education, literacy, media, politics


Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

The “Wanna Be” Natural – Part 2/3

I don’t recall this student’s name so I’ll call him “Wanna Be”, and he was convinced he was going to be a big league pitcher. He often disrupted the class by announcing that baseball scouts were already watching him and his future was guaranteed.

Wanna Be saw no reason to read the assignments, study for tests, or do homework and he failed both semesters.

In the mornings before first period, I’d often run into Wanna Be before he had his liquid-sugar breakfast and he was a friendly guy—nothing like the surely, moody monster that walked into my fifth period after lunch with a 64 ounce Coke in hand.

The sugar he consumed at lunch often resulted in glazed eyes, a slack jaw, slurred speech and a serious change in behavior.

Liquid Sugar is Toxic

The student snack bar, which was more of a fast food outlet that served mostly French fries, pizza slices, nachos smothered in cheese and hamburgers, sold 64 ounce Cokes for less than a dollar.

Near the end of my teaching career, the high school also had soda machines installed in the hallways to make money for the school district. The vender split the profits.

One morning, I ran into the truck driver stocking the machines and asked how many sodas the students drank.  I recall that he said he stocked an average of 2,000 cases a week in the machines at Nogales and a case held 24 Cokes—that’s 48,000 Cokes a week at one high school. The high school had about 3,000 students. You do the math.

To be fair, the machines also sold water but most of the students hooked on this liquid candy hated water and had no qualms saying how horrible water tasted.

Continued on April 28, 2011 in The “Wanna Be” Natural – Part 3 or return to Part 1


Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of the concubine saga, My Splendid Concubine & Our Hart. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too.

To subscribe to Crazy Normal, look for the “Subscribe” button at the top of the screen in the menu bar, click on it then follow directions.


Tags: , , , , , , , , ,