Welcome to Varied Expressions of Worship

Welcome to Varied Expressions of Worship

This blog will be written from an orthodox Christian point of view. There may be some topic that is out of bounds, but at present I don't know what it will be. Politics is a part of life. Theology and philosophy are disciplines that we all participate in even if we don't think so. The Bible has a lot to say about economics. How about self defense? Is war ethical? Think of all the things that someone tells you we should not touch and let's give it a try. Everything that is a part of life should be an expression of worship.

Keep it courteous and be kind to those less blessed than you, but by all means don't worry about agreeing. We learn more when we get backed into a corner.

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Opus 2014-321: Rigor and High Standards = Smoke and Mirrors

Whenever you hear educators talk about the high standards they have and the rigorous approach to education they take you need to get out your baloney meter.

Let me relate an example.  For purposes of protecting the innocent and calming the guilty I will call the teacher Mr. Smith and the student John.

We have a “holiday” program like most schools.  Kids are pulled out of class to practice and prepare.  The school made a clear statement outlining the standards that would be expected to be able to participate.  The one the relates to this post is that the student could not participate if they had any “U’s” in citizenship.  That means unsatisfactory, in case you were wondering.

We give grades four times each semester.  It is easy to see who has unsatisfactory citizenship.  You do a data printout and there it is.  It would seem easy to determine who is not eligible.  That should end the process of qualifying.  Not so in public education.  I was first harassed by John to sign a paper saying he no longer had a “U”.  He promised to change and do better.  I said “No.  You have been tardy consistently all year.  Live with the responsibility of your actions.”  Next, Mr. Smith came to me with a list of students who wanted to participate but were banned by their behavior.  Generally these were students who had multiple “U’s”, not just one. 

So I went through the list with Mr. Smith and agreed to change the ones that appeared to be one time grades.  Some students had been fine for two grading periods and only had a problem with the last.  I can be reasonable.  John had been consistent all year.  John came pleading again.  I again said “No.”

Then Mr. Smith told me that the principle and assistant principle would be talking to me about John and seeing if something could be worked out.  While this was going on John continued to be tardy two and three times a week.  I never heard another word.  Two days before the performance I asked Mr. Smith if John would participate.  He said yes.  The powers that be had decided to allow him to do his thing.

One issue here for me was that none of the others on my list were given the same exemption.  Only one parent came and made an issue.  Only one student was exempted.  Since parents make an issue we abandon the myth of standards.  It is easier to talk standards than uphold standards

The biggest issue for me is that this child has been taught, again, that he will never need to be responsible and that the rules do not apply to him.  He has learned that he will always be given a waiver.  If this were a one time thing I could live with it but it is an ongoing pattern.

We are destroying a generation.  You wonder why the young man in Ferguson thought he could attack the cop?  You wonder why the young man in Florida thought he could beat up a member o neighborhood watch?  You wonder why so many young people think that the rules don’t apply to them?  One big reason is that their education has taught them that.

Keep in mind that you elected the school board.  You elected the politicians that appointed the judges.  In most states, you reelected the judges. 

I wonder who is to be blamed.

homo unius libri

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Comments are welcome. Feel free to agree or disagree but keep it clean, courteous and short. I heard some shorthand on a podcast: TLDR, Too long, didn't read.