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Tag Archives: Reading

Bush and Obama’s Ignorant Gaff – Part 1/3

Study after study show that the “average” American parent talks to his or her child less than five minutes a day and that 80% of parents never attend a parent-teacher conferences during the thirteen years his or her child is in school.

The “No Child Left Behind Act” became law in 2001 and it was ignorance personified since nowhere in the Act were parents or students held responsible for anything.

Two presidents have pandered to the popular myth that bad teachers are the reason so many of America’s children are not learning what they should in school. George W. Bush was the first president and then there is Obama.

I’m writing this as a protest about Obama’s words concerning underperforming schools that should fire teachers. When schools do not perform, politicians have always looked for scapegoats and teachers make good targets.

Yes, there are poor teachers but no more than any profession. Most are hard working and dedicated. I should know. I taught for thirty years and my weeks were often one hundred hours of work, because I often worked at home correcting papers or planning lessons.

This reaction to fire teachers when students do not learn is wrong. Why not punish the students and the parents instead?

When I was a child and educators said I would never learn to read or write due to severe dyslexia, my mother taught me to read at home. Both of my parents were avid readers, and my parents were my role models—not my teachers.

Continued in Bush and Obama’s Ignorant Gaff – Part 2 or View as Single Page

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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.

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Wet Dreams and Adolescent Fantasies

This teacher had a bad case of PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder). The first thing I saw were Playboy centerfolds hanging from the ceiling. The walls were covered with blotches of paint and clay. Any art supplies that weren’t on the ceiling, walls or blackboard were smeared on the floor. The regular teacher often left the room to smoke cigarettes leaving the kids unsupervised.

I was offered a long-term position to the end of the school year. I accepted, and the VP gave me the room key and replaced the art supplies the kids had destroyed. I spent the weekend cleaning the mess.

After the first few days on the job, the kids started calling me “Sergeant”.  That’s because I ran the class like a Marine Corps drill instructor but without the profanity and insults. The troublemakers hated me. No student liked the discipline, and one of the girls complained to her dad that I was mean and didn’t know anything about art. He demanded a parent conference.

After school the next day, the father walked in with his daughter right behind him.  I could tell from his body language that his had convinced him that I had to go. That’s when I saw the United States Marine Corps tattoo on his right forearm.

Continued in Part 4, Semper Fidelis—Always Faithful. The Few. The Proud
If you didn’t start reading this four part series with “It’s the Parents, Stupid“, click here

 

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Some Teachers Should Earn Combat Pay

There’s more to the story of our daughter’s academic success than teaching her at home when one of her teachers was not doing an acceptable job. We also left the TV off Monday through Friday and provided a place for her to do her homework. Research shows that kids watch too much television. On weekends, we watched about two to four hours of TV—no more and we watched as a family.  She has never had a TV in her room.  No video games either.  We also took her to the library once a week and checked out books. When she was done with her homework each school night, her only form of entertainment was to read, and she did.

In 1977, Covina Valley School District wanted a tough substitute to tame an unruly art class at Las Palmas Middle School. The art teacher at Lao Palmas had a breakdown and was in the hospital under a doctor’s care. The Las Palmas’s principal called the principal at Giano Intermediate.

At the time, Giano had a reputation as the toughest school in the San Gabriel Valley due to the local street gangs. The principal was Ralph Pagan, a Korean War Veteran. He’d been hired to tame Giano.  I’d subbed at Giano many times the previous year, and Ralph recommended me for the job. I met the VP at Las Palmas after school one day, and he let me into the art room. What I saw shocked me.

Discover It’s the Parents, Stupid

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Lloyd Lofthouse, a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran, is the award winning author of My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition].

His latest novel is 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 hate and kill Americans.

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