Saturday, April 16, 2011

The issues of politics and religions are as old as written history

Saginaw Cohort

I found this article interesting in that most of these issues of politic and religions are as old as written history. These issues are not new, in that we have had struggles between religions in the world for over 2000 years. As far as the politic in some form of education dates back to pre written history. The Romains struggle with politics and human kind has struggled with power and class of society and even race throughout the existence of the human race. So why would we not expect to find these old debates continue into today’s educational systems. I found it interesting how the Political action groups have help form the battles in education by contributing to the political parties as the religious groups have done to try to get voucher legislation passed. I remember when teachers in the Michigan Education Association were strongly encouraged to payroll deduced their donation to the PAC. Now as I understand it, they have to make the donation out of their pay after they receive their weekly paycheck if they want to contribute.
The different groups as in religious and political have also try to create tiered society systems by the use of knowledge. This has help to widen the gaps of the haves and the have not’s. This is illustrated near the time of the civil war in America as we have seen in the past weeks movie. The south states fought hard to keep black people from reading books. Reading is knowledge and power and they want to keep them uneducated and in need of there support systems to keep cheap labor. Another reason for this was because as a group you will struggle to promote an uprising if you can’t communicate when and where the meetings will be held.
As we see in the conclusion of this article many groups take the NCLB data and other data and twist it to meet their needs and desires as in race, religion and the struggle for power. A portion of the article talked about business pressure. This is one of the newest pressure compared to most of the other issues. It is born by business men to have a need for skilled workers to help them produce their products. For with out the worker bees there is no one else to do the work and task that the upper middle class doesn’t want to-do. This article didn’t have much in positives that are created by the standardized testing but mostly told why it is doomed to failure. As far as progressive education, NCLB has limited to some degree the ability of schools to help meet all the needs of the student. These skills make students a full and well rounded student with diversity in balance in all aspects of the student from Health Education to Music and cultural art learning.
The alarms are sounding again that say are education systems are failing us. This time it is the Global Economy and how the other countries are leaving us behind in education as the sciences and math. The last time that we had this alarm sounding, was when the Russians launched sputnik and we were in a race to catch up in education, sciences and engineering.
I was surprised to find in the article where the government is subsidizing Sylivan Learning in areas where the school is under performing and the student is at risk. This type of policy is prompting and allowing for a private company to profit and could easily look to be a pork barrel deal for this company.
In conclusion early rooted education systems place education responsibility on the locally controlled boards of education, over the years this has been tested and many attempts to break this local control and place the control with the state and or the federal government. This right and freedoms in the checks and balances of the systems have allowed us some of the autonomy to still help control and steer are local community school to meet the needs and desires of the local people. In conclusion we have not changed educational systems much over the years. If you look at a picture of an early 1900 class room a hundred and eight years later it looks the same in most aspects of the room desk and chairs with the teacher in front of the class a white board my now replace the blackboard but essentially the room is the same. The struggles of curriculum have not changed much either as religions battle over the merits of modern schools curriculum and what part religion should play in establishing each student’s moral fiber. Also if we should educate to think on are own or be programmed to be ready for the working world.

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I am the Director of Technology at a K-12 School system.