Welcome to Tigersue's Jungle. Here you may find a Jungle of thoughts and idea's. You may never know what you will find!
Yes, I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints! I am a wife, a mother, a sister, and a friend.

Friday, November 16, 2007

I am grateful for.... Education

I had the opportunity to go to a program to prepare Collin for his ninth grade year and beyond. It was for the most part good reminders and good ideas as far as what classes are required and what colleges look at. I was reminded of the great opportunities we have in the this country for education. Even with the problems in the public school system, every child in this country has a chance to be educated. Even beyond high school there are several options for post high school education, whether it be in higher education or trade school settings. There are student loans, grants, various scholarships available if studied out and researched ahead of time. Not every student needs to spend huge amounts of money on degrees after high school, in fact many smaller colleges and universities have excellent programs and a much lower cost than the more "prestigious" institutions. I know that my associates degree in nursing is as valuable as a bachelors degree, I have the same license and took the same state board tests to work as a nurse in less time than the 4 year degree equivalents.

One thing that bothered me though is the push for "cookie cutter" students. Each student is required to take certain classes. That is okay, but then there is the push to do more math, more science, more language, without considering the special skills and talents of individual students. Fine arts seem to be ignored completely.
I can look at myself as an example. I think I am fairly intelligent and bright. I had lofty goals going into high school. I had done well in Algebra, and planned to take Calculus and physics my senior year. Something happened and changed. Algebra II I got C, terrible grades for me. Geometry was slightly better with B's. By the end of my 10th grade year my GPA had suffered because of math, and I was very concerned about my goal to graduate with high honors. (3.7 GPA, and at least 4 AP classes). I made the choice to drop Math completely. It was a hard choice, but it had to be done. If I continued my grades would continue to suffer and I would not reach my goal. So I started with Science classes, a guess what, I got A's. My grades improved, and my senior year I had three AP science classes, (AP Biology, zoology and Anatomy and Physiology, and well as my College English Class). I attained my goal, graduating with high honors with a GPA pulled up to 3.71. It was hard, hard work, to achieve that after the damage of two years of poor math grades. Today, I would be frowned at because it is thought that you need to have 4 years of math to be successful in college. There was no mention of what participation in fine arts does for students. Only math and science. It really is a pity, even English is ignored. What about the student with a gift of language and expression. Is our education system so desperate to look good we forget that every student is an individual and if their goal is to graduate with good grade, and tough classes that there cannot be some kind of give and take.
I know this sounds like a rant, but why not this sort of set up.
3 years math required
3 years of science
4 years of English
2 years of language or Fine arts

Then award for good grades with the following
2 to 3 extra credits taken for math and science above the required 6 total
extra English or history (AP history, Creative writing, editing, and debate)
extra fine arts above the 2, this would cover the AP language classes, AP music, Drama, photography, art, design, etc.

There are many difficult classes that can be awarded for student that follow their gifts and talents. Not everyone understands advanced math, and it has been proven that girls brains struggle with math during adolescence. Allow the girls brains to adapt and grow, it may make a difference for them.

Now this may seem like a bit of a rant, of course it is, but isn't great that I can talk about this in a country where kids have choices in education. Parents have choices. Our children are not forced to have to "prove" to be in the top percentage to even be allowed to go on in school. We are truly blessed to live here and take a chance at it.

So today, I am grateful for education. After all without it I would not be able to write this blog. :)

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