Sunday, December 08, 2013

Some real talk about education.

Extra! Extra! Read all about it! High poverty rates affect school performance.

"In schools where less than 10 percent of students get free or reduced lunch, the reading score is 551. That would place those U.S. students at No. 2 on the international ranking for reading, just behind Shanghai, China which topped the ranking with a score of 556.

 In schools where 75 percent or more of the students get free or reduced lunch, the reading score was 446. That’s off the bottom of the charts, below last-place Greece’s 483.

Money matters and countless studies have demonstrated a link between parents’ income and students’ test scores.

“These data remind us that U.S. schools do rather well by students who come to school ready to learn, but it’s impossible to ignore the persistent correlation between poverty and performance." [Source]

Yes, I suppose it's hard to learn when you are hungry. Or, when you see your parent (or parents) struggling every day to make ends meet. But I think that most of us already knew this. Most of us.

I have friends who are lifelong residence of this city. They love Philadelphia and everything it has to offer, but after the birth of their first child that all changes, because the one thing that they do not love about Philadelphia is the public school system. With the birth of a child come tough choices down the road. Now you must consider paying for private school if your child can't get into one of the elite public schools. Now you must consider moving to the burbs (in some cases this means giving up your job) and pay higher property taxes to have the privilege of putting your child in one of the suburban public schools.

Those of us who support public education understand this problem. We realize that it's not the teachers or their unions, or the lack of funds that's allocated to individual students; it's bigger than that. We understand that a foundation for a good student starts at home. Most of the children in the public school system are from poor dysfunctional homes, and teaching them is a challenge. It's why we will never truly address the problem with public education in this country until we start being honest with ourselves about the root causes of most of these problems.

The homes are broken, there is a lack of parental involvement, and there is a generational disconnect about the value of a good education which is passed on from parent to child. I don't care how many great teachers you put in a class room or how much money you spend, the situation will not get fixed until those more complex and nuanced issues are addressed.

A friend of mine grew up in the projects of North Philadelphia to a single mother. He grew up poor with the same handicaps and disadvantages I mentioned earlier. But that did not stop him from getting Ivy League degrees and becoming a very successful attorney in South Jersey. His story is the one that we would like to celebrate as the norm, but sadly, he is an outlier, and one great story does not a trend make.

For what it's worth he said that he was never one to give in to peer pressure and outside influences. He always wanted more for himself, and he took it upon himself to spend his days reading and preparing himself for school even when his mother could not. He was self motivated, and something made the light come on.

For most of the young men in inner city Philadelphia and other cities across the country, that light will never come on. They will do poorly in poor schools, and they will be handed degrees that they do not deserve. They will spend their lives doing menial jobs, and, if they are lucky, they will avoid the criminal justice system. (Statistics tell us that most of these young men will not.)

For the women the prospects are not much better. They, too, will be doomed to a life of failure and underachievement. Statistics tell us that they will have a child out of wedlock, and more than likely it will be with someone who cannot care for that child.

Their life will be made that much harder of having the burden of raising a family without emotional and financial support, and unfortunately they will start the cycle of hopelessness all over again.

"As National Education Association President Dennis Van Roekel explained:
The PISA test can still tell us many things, says NEA President Dennis Van Roekel, but the results are certainly not proof that we need to accelerate voucher programs, continue ineffective high-stakes testing, and scapegoat teachers. U.S. students won't rank higher on PISA, Van Roekel explains, until the nation properly addresses poverty and its effect on students. 
"Our students from well-to-do families have consistently done well on the PISA assessments. For students who live in poverty, however, it's a different story. Socioeconomic factors influence students' performance in the United States more than they do in all but few of the other PISA countries," says Van Roekel."

Yes we have to address poverty and "socioeconomic factors", but we are also going to need some real talk along the way.





31 comments:

The Purple Cow said...

Field, as long as there are white men like David Simon amongst you, there is still hope for America.

"http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/dec/08/david-simon-capitalism-marx-two-americas-wire

Bill said...

Vietnam, which had its students take part in the exam for the first time, had a higher average score in math and science than the United States.

http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/12/03/21733705-us-teens-lag-in-global-education-rankings-as-asian-countries-rise-to-the-top

Compare the democrats reaction to the failed healthcare system that needed overhaul and the failed government school educational system supported by teacher unions.

Should I point out that teacher unions routinely put the worst performing teachers into minority schools because the democrat voting school administrators know that minorities won't complain about teachers having students children eating cookies with, well, DNA stuff.
http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-former-miramonte-teacher-mark-berndt-20131114,0,5969431.story#axzz2mtxpZEyu

Remember, when the union officials are negotiating with government officials, there is NO ONE representing the children.

Imagine how democrats like FN would react if the government school system was controlled by right-wingers, unfortunately for minority children the problem will never be fixed because of the democrats allegiance to unions.

Google "teacher rubber rooms" to learn how teacher unions support perverted/failing teachers.

Bill said...

FN speaking the truth said...
The homes are broken, there is a lack of parental involvement, and there is a generational disconnect about the value of a good education which is passed on from parent to child. I don't care how many great teachers you put in a class room or how much money you spend, the situation will not get fixed until those more complex and nuanced issues are addressed.


FN makes the point, it's not about money, it's all about parents.

Sometimes the facts force FN to go all extreme right-wing.

Yes, blaming the parents for the failures of their children is an extreme right-wing position, the accepted left-wing position is that schools need more money to educate poor children.

The U.S. ranks fifth in spending per student. Only Austria, Luxembourg, Norway, and Switzerland spend more per student.

http://www.theatlantic.com/education/archive/2013/12/american-schools-vs-the-world-expensive-unequal-bad-at-math/281983/

Vietnam get much better educational results for less money.

Does vietnam have teacher unions?

Black Sage said...

“Knowledge makes a man unfit to be a slave.” – Frederick Douglas
“Once you learn to read, you will be forever free.” – Frederick Douglas

Education is not only the crux of the problem but it’s also the demarcation of whether you want to live as a lifelong slave or as a free person. Furthermore, education is also the reason why the slave masters were adamantly against someone teaching a slave how to read because they knew that it would eventually be a problem of containing him or her. Just like so-called rethuglicans, pilgrims, conservatives, shills, avunculars and you’re your average white person of today. They want to keep blacks in a state of subjugation; stressing on how to make ends meet; substandard living conditions and uneducated children to repeat social, generational cycles of misfortunes all over again. Whites that belong to today’s power political and economic structures know for certain that a lack of education is the key to keeping blacks under control and in a powerless, servile disposition.

Certainly, it’s a whole lot easier to keep a man slave if he’s uneducated; obedient and groveling all at once and never have to think about an offensive plan; an uprising; a confrontation, a shift in social and political strength or a flying pot thrown against a slave master’s cranium with full force.

Education was the key to freedom during this country’s slaveocracy era and throughout its existence and I’m deeply saddened that the same holds true even today! It’s unfortunate that a swath of blacks still fail to realize this concept.

It’s also too darn bad that a lot of blacks do not look at education as being the pathway to freedom and being uneducated as being just the opposite. It seems as if they still unfortunately associate not having shackles on your arms and feet as being that of a slave. Nope, the attire of a slave has changed!

On the other hand, this post confirms and galvanizes my suspicion even further why whites stay the hell out of my face at work as well!

Wisconsin Reader said...

I am a 72 year old Vietnam era veteran - owned a small business in the Chicago area for decades - retired to rural Wisconsin where my wife came from. In this area - mainly white working class (our county voted for President Obama twice)- the schools are well below the quality of the affluent Chicago suburbs (where my kids went) - with lots of families qualifying for free lunches - turning out students who mainly have modest life goals - by big city standards.

The difference it seems to me is that spending a lifetime in a "non old Confederacy" rural area is such a far easier and simpler life. Less competition for everything - being relatively poor is not an issue - when the cost of living is so much lower than in urban areas.

Our larger cities have long histories of ethnic minority organizing as a way of survival - often involving crime and violence - because the opposition was and is so established and organized - which is largely unheard of in rural areas.

When "conservatives" rail against "the urban poor" for criminality and violence - with the usual implied racism and bigotry - they are wrong. . . The issue is really "location" - not ethnicity - the associated high costs of living - and the lack of enough well paying jobs - is the root of the problem. . .

Black Sage said...

Bill O'Reilly Jr. said: "FN makes the point, it's not about money, it's all about parents."

It's about both, you MORON!

Bill said...

FN quoted...
but the results are certainly not proof that we need to accelerate voucher programs, continue ineffective high-stakes testing, and scapegoat teachers.


Yes, voucher programs work.

Pretend you're a parent that values education and support your kid's education.

In a voucher school, for the most part your kid will be surrounded by the children of other parents that value education. Other parents like you.

In a government school your kid will watch the messed up kids disrupt the class and do everything to make sure no education happens. Kids raised by parents that don't share your values.

Being against vouchers is being anti-choice for education.

Anonymous said...

It's about AIDS-African Intelligence Deficiency Simpletonitis.

Bill said...

Black Sage said...
It's about both, you MORON!


If it's about money, please explain how so many poor people of all races/colors/religion have become educated?

You calling me names is more a reflection on your upbringing than it is on me.
Were you rich enough with good parenting to be educated enough to realize that?

Black Sage said...

@Bill O'Reilly Jr., your warped and uncalibrated thinking is a reflection of people like you and Rethuglicans being a major part of the problem, if not the only problem!

Bill said...

Black Sage said...
@Bill O'Reilly Jr., your warped and uncalibrated thinking


Is that your explanation for why so many poor people become educated?

Maybe I should start posting some names of rich people (paris hilton, kadisihans) that are very educated to prove your point it's about money.

negro b.s. detector said...

they? black sage? since you know what "they" want, you can list names and specific examples.

take all the time you need.

"Whites that belong to today’s power political and economic structures know for certain that a lack of education is the key to keeping blacks under control and in a powerless, servile disposition."

who are the people you talk to in "today’s power political and economic structure"? you have to talk to these folks to know what they know. right?

Black Sage said...

Wisconsin Reader said: “The issue is really "location" - not ethnicity - the associated high costs of living - and the lack of enough well paying jobs - is the root of the problem. . .”

I agree with you only to a certain extent Wisconsin Reader. However, race and ethnicity has and always will be a staple of the Amerikkkan political and economic landscape. Race, ethnicity and the overseeing slave master are inseparable components. It has nothing to do with your locale. Charleston, SC is my hometown and had one of this country’s largest slave ports. The slaves weren’t dropped off in Charleston due to its scenery, abundant fishing prospects or to do contract work on the Confederates’ submarine, the H.L. Hunley. Silly wabbits, thought this was all they needed to defeat the Union troops. But I digress! No, … it was simply because your skin was black, which made it good a enough qualification for you to be treated as chattel property and as a slave. Simply put, it had nothing to do with location then, just as it currently is centuries later with slaveocracy being in the rear view mirror.

Perhaps Frederick Douglas, an authority on such matters as slavery should’ve rephrased his one of his many dictums above to: “An individual’s locale makes a man unfit to be a slave”.

I thinketh NOT!

Black Sage said...

Sageman signing in as Pilgrim BULLSHIT Detector

Negro b.s. Detector asked: “who are the people you talk to in "today’s power political and economic structure"? you have to talk to these folks to know what they know. right?

Nope, … I know what I know because of what I persistently see and read about. Try again!

Black Sage said...

@Bill O’Reilly Jr., you may continue to take my words out of context all you want, it only further proves my point that you’re a bonafide Retuglican uploading posts that are overwhelmingly smug, hackneyed, insubstantial and veiled, but mean spirited.

It bears repeating: Democrats and Rethuglicans are both crappy ass parties. However, the Rethugs like you are somewhat sophisticated and always claim that they’re working for the poor of this nation. But if you’d remove their canopy of political concealment and read their platform, they STINK like hell!

Here’s a memo for you Bill Jr. and your cohort Rethugs: INSTEAD OF PRETENDING TO ATTACK THE PROBLEM, WHY DON’T YOU GOOD OLD BOYS ATTACK THE ETIOLOGY OR ROOT CAUSE OF THE PROBLEM?

Philly Cheese said...

Money matters and countless studies have demonstrated a link between parents’ income and students’ test scores.

There is also a link between the parents’ income and their IQ and between the parents’ IQ and that of their children.

Smart children with decent parents like your friend (who grew up in the projects of North Philadelphia to a single mother) can be successful, even at the highest levels of achievement. Therefore, it's not through lack of opportunity that so many fail.

And it's not through lack of funding. Inner city schools spend more per student than do sburban and rural schools.

And it's not through racism, as these school districts are run almost exclusively by black administrators and employ mostly black teachers.

It is partially through incompetence and corruption, which could be alleviated by using vouchers to allow poor students to escape failing government schools.

But mostly it is cultural. The liberal-feminist welfare state has badly damaged all families, but is has absolutely destroyed black families.

Stop subsidizing dysfunction by paying for single motherhood and penalizing marriage. When people must bear the consequences of their bad choices, they tend to start making better choices.

The Purple Cow said...

Philly Cheese is lying through his teeth, there is no known correlation between the I.Q.'s of children from wealthy and less wealthy backgrounds. Much research has been done, kids in wealthy areas are no smarter than kids in the poorest of areas. Genetics have nothing to do with it.

Mind you I.Q. tests only measure your ability to take I.Q. tests, they have little to do with intelligence.

Philly Cheese said...

The Purple Cow said...
Philly Cheese is lying through his teeth, there is no known correlation between the I.Q.'s of children from wealthy and less wealthy backgrounds. Much research has been done, kids in wealthy areas are no smarter than kids in the poorest of areas. Genetics have nothing to do with it.
----------

This is a statement of ideology not of fact.

Everyone on the planet does not have exactly the same IQ.

Smarter people tend to make more money.

There are dumb rich people and poor geniuses, but the correlation is undeniable.

We are all created equal, we all have equal value as human beings, but as regards the distribution of talent, we are not all equal.

You want to help poor kids? Stop wrecking their homes with 'kindness', stop wrecking their own and their parents economic lives by stifling job production and killing opportunities. Get off their fucking backs and give them the ball.

The Purple Cow said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
The Purple Cow said...

It's a statement of fact.

I never once said all people have the same I.Q. what I am saying is that there is no difference between the I.Q. of rich kids and poor kids. Many, many have been tested, no difference has been found. Intelligence is 40% inherited and 60% learned.

The incompetence of IQ tests as a measure of intelligence is well documented. The US army has set more IQ tests than any organisation on Earth, they found that even changing the colour of the invigilator changes people's I.Q. With a black man running the test black people's IQ results raised by 15 points, and the results of white people from southern states fell by the same amount. Black and white people from north of the mason-dixon line tested more intelligent than black and white people from the south.

In other words testing people for intelligence is a game for bigots or fools.

Desertflower said...

Great post.

There's so many things that can be said,so many,all sad.

But you, I, as well as anyone who has studied social sciences, education, medicine, law,politics,are well aware of the enormous difficulties that poverty ridden children face in education.

There are a myriad of problems and situations arising in a poor family nucleus,that will relegate school attendance and schoolwork to another plane. Because basic survival will always take first place. As per the Maslow Pyramid.

Sad situation that so many young people aren't growing to their full potential.







Whitey's Conspiracy said...

If you are being raised on auto-pilot, if parental involvement is an occasion instead of a constant, if the only life outside of school that even your involved parent(s) can offer you is the utter insecurity of grinding poverty, if your parent's addictions are their #1 priority (& addictions always are), if you don't even have a point of reference for success through education in your life, then school is going to be little more than a social occasion for you.

Bill said...

Black Sage said...
Here’s a memo for you Bill Jr. and your cohort Rethugs: INSTEAD OF PRETENDING TO ATTACK THE PROBLEM, WHY DON’T YOU GOOD OLD BOYS ATTACK THE ETIOLOGY OR ROOT CAUSE OF THE PROBLEM?


The root cause of the problem is lack of parenting. Pretty simple.

My life experience has proven to me that poor people are poor because of themselves. Not intentional, the results of crappy parenting. How many kids raised being called names from their crappy parents do well? Exceptions, not rules. How does a young male grow up to do the right thing when he is raised by a single mother that expresses hate for his deadbeat father and other males? And in the non-extreme abuse cases, so many kids have no idea there are crippling "issues" to be dealt with. Even if the parents were decent when sober, google Adult Children of Alcoholics.

To solve the problem...
How to prevent crappy people from becoming crappy parents and wasting a generation...

Imagine a rethug suggesting some kind of "no pregnancy without government approval" or means testing law. RACIST!

If redistributing the wealth worked, such a disturbingly high number of lottery winners wouldn't end up bankrupt.
Giving poor people $ to be better parents is a comical idea.

The change has to come from the will of the public. And I don't see that happening.
For example... I'm told in the old days high school girls that got pregnant were shamed into dropping out of schools. Today it is the opposite where there is no stigma to be pregnant.
No stimga for having multiple babies from multiple fathers.
No stigma for unacceptable behavior. No stigma to the degree that bad behavior gets youtubed. All in the name of being accepting.

Any rethug touting any idea will be called a racist and intolerant of poor people. Look at the name calling of bill cosby when he spoke.

Black Sage said...

Philly Cheese said: "Smarter people tend to make more money."

Mr. Cheese man, your meme and entire argument withers away at the mere announcement of the truth. I personally know a few white men that are dumb as a door knob but they make more money than me. Simply put, you don't make even an ounce worth of sense.

CLEARLY, you're attempting to avoid mentioning that the education attainment and plight of minority children has any thing to do with the factor of race and racism.

Sorry cheee cake, pardon me, I meant to say Philly Cheese. It's already a long held and foregone conclusion that race is a pre-factor and ever persistent, determinative component of all decision making in Amerikkk. Therefore, STOP LYING!

Black Sage said...

@Pilgrim Bullshit Detector, ok, I'll give you that one, there are a lot of crappy black parents. On the other hand, there are also a shit load of crappy white parents as well. In situations such as this, the white parents are usually in a much better financial position to lend assistance simply because of their phenotype.

Pilgrim, you and Bill Jr. may continue to deny that race and racism is paramount to education and everything else in Amerikkkka, but history tells us quite a different narrative.

Anonymous said...

(Sigh)There was a time in the not-too-distant past when failure was unacceptable.
(Sigh)There was a time in the not-too-distant past when welfare/"relief" was embarrassing.
(Sigh)There was a time in the not-too-distant past when teen pregnancies and/or out-of-wedlock pregnancies were unacceptable.
Those were the good ole days - BEFORE integration and its destruction of intact thriving Negro economic, social, and moral communities.
Teacher unions can ONLY GUARANTEE DUE PROCESS! for its members. They cannot legally prevent the dismissal of a proven incompetent teacher. It takes, on average, one year for a (competent, hard-working and courageous) administrator to dismiss an incompetent teacher. Competent teachers, if they are smart, flee "inner-city" poverty-stricken schools often because: Well, which comes first, chicken or the egg; poverty or acceptance of failure, i.e., "this is the best we can do; good enough is good enough"?
Black students who do strive to succeed have to often withstand verbal (and sometimes physical) assaults on their "Blackness", their authenticity.
We -Black people- obstruct our own progress. We -Black people- are our own enemy; not the government; not "whitey/crackers".
And, to "Purple Sage": Where is the evidence that "intelligence" is heritable? I always understood that so-called "intelligence" is an organism's capacity to adapt to an ever-changing environment.
And, at the risk of dignifying anything my fellow reptilian/brain-stem rightwing-nut repugnican bottom-feeding toads say, well, nevermind; I don't want to waste energy.

accountability said...

Whitey's Conspiracy said...

If you are being raised on auto-pilot, if parental involvement is an occasion instead of a constant, if the only life outside of school that even your involved parent(s) can offer you is the utter insecurity of grinding poverty, if your parent's addictions are their #1 priority (& addictions always are), if you don't even have a point of reference for success through education in your life, then school is going to be little more than a social occasion for you.
----------------

So why are so many black people such terrible parents?

Philly Cheese said...

The Purple Cow said...
"what I am saying is that there is no difference between the I.Q. of rich kids and poor kids. Many, many have been tested, no difference has been found. Intelligence is 40% inherited and 60% learned."
------

Nonsense.

Intelligence is 100% inherited.

Knowledge is 100% learned.

Green Parsley said...

Black Stooge said...
Philly Cheese said: "Smarter people tend to make more money."

Mr. Cheese man, your meme and entire argument withers away at the mere announcement of the truth. I personally know a few white men that are dumb as a door knob but they make more money than me
----------

Intelligence is of course not the only determinate of income. Work ethic, ambition, aggression, willingness to take risks, luck and of course favoritism and patronage all factor into how big one's paycheck is.

The fact that you can't see the difference between a large statistical analysis of income distribution and the anecdotal nature of your personal experience with "a few white men" tells me that you are not as smart as you think you are vis-à-vis your co-workers. Maybe you should just shut up and work a little harder.

NSangoma said...

~

... that did not stop him from getting Ivy League degrees and becoming a very successful attorney in South Jersey.
...
field negro

Yes, he is and outlier, an anomaly; at minimum a person of superior intelligence.

Fall 2013 ACT Composite Scores of Enrolled Freshmen California Institute of Technology
30 - 36 0.99
24 - 29 0.01

Fall 2013 ACT Composite Scores of Enrolled Freshmen Washington University
30 - 36 0.96
24 - 29 0.04

Fall 2013 ACT Composite Scores of Enrolled Freshmen Stanford University
30 - 36 0.87
24 - 29 0.12
18 - 23 0.01
http://www.collegedata.com/

Persons of average to above average intelligence do not attend these schools unless they are legacies.

`

Chris Lee said...

Interesting how Eastern European jewish immigrants in New York's lower east side managed to start their own schools and hospitals with considerably fewer resources. Even though they faced hostility and discrimination. Oddly many of those schools went on to be top tier institutions..interesting..