DailyDirt: No More Teachers' Dirty Looks…

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

School is out for most American kids right now, but that doesn’t mean parents and teachers aren’t still thinking about how schools could improve and how to get kids to learn better. There are plenty of problems that seem insurmountable in the US education system, but there could be some solutions that try to tackle them in limited trials. If these trials succeed, they might be expanded to more schools — and hopefully, over time, all schools can get better and learn from each other.

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Comments on “DailyDirt: No More Teachers' Dirty Looks…”

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Palkin6 says:

..very, very naive article — there are already mountains of studies, procedures, directives, opinions, debates, blogs, videos, podcasts, arguments, etc. on exactly this education issue… accumulated over the past century+.
The author here has really missed a lot– must have attended public schools.

But IMO the short answer to this “education problem” is to get the government out of the education system completely. The American education system is a textbook example of socialism in practice — the disaster we all see follows directly from that gross error in how to do things well in a supposed free society.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

Perhaps it is you who are naive, have you ever considered that?

The “education problem” is a contrived story full of lies and subterfuge sold to an ignorant unsuspecting populace. If one were following along, one of the first things done was to reduce funding of public schools, followed by finger wagging about grades and graduation rates. Then there was the charter school ripoff and now privatized schools take tax payer money and the children get an education that is worse that what was trashed.

Privatized schools are a boon to investors but a horror story for children. Ignorance is bliss in the privatize everything world, at least until they realize it does not work very well and then it is someone else’s fault.

IMO, the answer is to get money grubbing assholes out of education and let those with an education teach children.

nasch (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

I’m assuming this was intended:
privatized (once public) != private (originated as private)

Perhaps, but even if so I’m skeptical. It sounds like a case of looking at some very real failures in privatizing public schools, and generalizing that to all of them. That’s not to say I’m in favor of privatizing public schools, I’d rather see the public schools kept public and improved instead, but I don’t see why it would always result in a bad outcome for the kids.

Rekrul says:

I’m going say something very un-PC here;

Kids today are unruly because there’s no punishment that scares them. Lawmakers and so-called experts have made it illegal or at the least, heavily taboo, to use any punishment that a child might find even the least bit unpleasant.

My parents weren’t abusive, but when I was little, I knew that if I intentionally did something wrong, I could look forward to getting a few whacks on the butt from my father. Acting up at school would get me in trouble there, which would in turn get me in trouble at home. Even though it wasn’t what anyone would call a “beating”, it wasn’t pleasant and I wanted to avoid it whenever possible.

Today, a parent slaps a kid on the seat of their pants and the kid is likely to call CPS, whereupon the entire family gets put under a microscope for months. Kids know that if they break the rules, the worse that will happen is that they’ll get grounded, or maybe have their video games taken away for a week. Oooh, scary!

Some teenagers will openly mouth off to adults and even throw stuff at them because they know that if the adult so much as lays a finger on them, they’ll be arrested for assault, child endangerment and anything else the prosecutor can think to throw at them, while the teenager will treated like an innocent victim who was attacked for no reason.

We’ve had decades of experts telling anyone who’ll listen that corporal punishment is wrong and harmful, that you simply need to talk to the kids and treat them as equals, that other punishments work just as well, that you shouldn’t even call it “punishment” because that might damage junior’s fragile ego. Is it just a coincidence that this time period coincides with kids becoming more brazen and having less respect for authority?

Most of today’s child discipline methods amount to “Stop! Or I shall say ‘stop’ again!”

Uriel-238 (profile) says:

Re: I'm pretty sure kids had just as little respect for authority at any other time in history.

Frankly, the news we’ve seen right here has demonstrated that adults, whether parents, teachers, school administrators or law enforcement officers all don’t know how to exercise their authority with restraint. Instead we see kids being suspended for wearing NRA shirts or chewing their pop-tarts into the form of a handgun.

And plenty of parents are happy to utilize permission to beat their kids as a means to discharge some of their occupational aggression. I’ve heard plenty of parents talk about light taps on the bottom, but that tends to be the exceptional parent, not the rule. Plenty of parents resort to outright pugilism and then blame their outbursts on King Lot.

The way I’ve seen good discipline work is to integrate a child into the family and address the consequences of actions. When someone spills milk, we clean it up. When a child hits someone, we regard how that hurt the victim and they suffered for the kid’s hostility. When the kid writes swear words in chalk on the sidewalk, we go out and clean it up.

I suspect that antisocial kids probably emerge from dysfunctional homes in which all they ever see are parents exhausted from work, a boys-will-be-boys attitude about bullies on the streets and overworked, underpaid and apathetic school faculty. And until you resolve these issues, kids are going to be problem kids, whether they’re beating other kids in the street, sassing adults or hiding and gibbering in their own closets.

Right now, we have police officers gunning civilians down in the streets. Right now our representatives lie to us and insist they have to spy on American families to protect us, and yet they themselves line their pockets and serve their corporate masters. Right now our own administration kidnaps people without due process and tortures them, sometimes to death. And via its drone strike program executes fifty civilians per one person of interest by remote-control drones. And they call that acceptable collateral damage.

Lead by example or GTFO. Require our police, representatives and administrators to serve as good examples to our kids, or fire them.

Where are those people in authority who are actual good living examples on which our children should model? This do as I say not as I do bullshit doesn’t fly. Either be the person you want your kids to be, or accept that your kids are going turn into the same asshole that you are.

I say we have the kids we deserve. And they’ll find ways to survive in this crapsack world that we never considered.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: I'm pretty sure kids had just as little respect for authority at any other time in history.

I agree. We raise kids in fucked up environments where they learn our shit is “normal.” That goes for everyone, not just their teachers, parents, or law enforcement but their friends, media usage, and (lack of) hobbies.

The real issue is that kids aren’t told that it isn’t normal, partially because in many environments that’s just too hard of a concept to sell.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: I'm pretty sure kids had just as little respect for authority at any other time in history.

Well said. Where I am, kids generally get disciplined not because they misbehave – they get disciplined because they don’t fall in line or perform enough to meet someone else’s standards; standards that have only increased over the years. And all it takes is one bratty little outlier, and you immediately see the disciplinarians screaming how kids are all fucked up and we’re all in the end of times, all because their asses weren’t kicked enough.

Beating a kid doesn’t magically teach them discipline. For some, it just reinforces the idea that desired behavior can be forced if you hurt someone enough, and you have the power and approval of others to back it up. For some others, it convinces them that they have no right to individuality, and they grow up with no confidence, autonomy or ability to tell when they’re actually getting harassed or abused. In neither case would beating those kids even harder solve anything.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

“Kids today are unruly “

Kids everywhere throughout history are unruly.

“no punishment that scares them”

Because fear is the present day approved method of behavioral control. Helicopter parents unite!

“Some teenagers will openly mouth off to adults”

The horror!

“Most of today’s child discipline methods amount to “Stop! Or I shall say ‘stop’ again!””

More like “that’s a tazing”

nasch (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Kids today are unruly because there’s no punishment that scares them.

If the only thing you can think of to do to your kids when (not if) they misbehave is hit them, maybe you shouldn’t be a parent. My kids know there are unpleasant consequences coming if they misbehave, and they have never been struck*. I hate and reject the idea that hitting children is the only effective form of discipline.

* OK I give my 14 yr old an occasional dope slap on the back of the head for being rude, I admit

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

When school administrators get kickbacks for each new prescription, the rates of (insert here) will raise.

If one were to review the opinions of medical experts, it becomes clear that over prescription is the problem not the behavior of children. If a person is unable to handle children as an educator then perhaps they are in the wrong field. If a person is unable to handle children as a parent then that is problematic and the results can be tragic. In either case, drugging up the kids is simply bad policy and does not solve anything other than filling someone’s pockets.

Christenson says:

Exercise -- much less of it

I have a certain amount of observer bias, but I suspect that kids today are getting much less exercise than they did when I grew up a few decades ago.

I suspect that the result is restlessness in the classroom — kids *need* exercise.

The biased evidence: When I grew up, in a city of course, I walked to school. High School, we went down to the corner bus stop.

Today, in semi-rural VA, the vast majority of students get to school on wheels, even show up at the ends of their driveways in cars, recess has been dispensed with as unnecessary, and helicopter parenting means very little running around outside except during very limited times.

Anybody know a good way to double-blind that?

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