Powerful Quotes

Yong Zhao, professor at Michigan State University’s College of Education and author of Catching Up or Leading the Way: American Education in the Age of Globalization, says there’s a lot of data showing that standardized test scores do not predict a nation’s success, and considering China is one of the top scorers in all international student assessment tests across the board.  “Many of China’s college graduates cannot find a job,” says Zhao, “At the same time international firms in China are actually complaining they can’t find qualified talent–so there’s some irony there … Going after test scores is the wrong indicator to look at for the quality of education.” 

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“Stress is nothing more than a socially acceptable form of mental illness” -Richard Carlson

“Forget the notion of carefree youth. America’s teens are every bit as stressed out as the adults around them..” -Jonel Aleccia

“What if the cure to cancer was trapped in someone who couldn’t afford college”

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“Education is about inspiring ones mind, not just filling their head” -Suli Breaks

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“All in saying is that if there was a family tree, hard work and education would be related, but school would probably be a distant cousin”

“For most of American history, parents could expect that their children would, on average, be much better educated than they were. But that is no longer true. This development has serious consequences for the economy.” -Robert J. Gordon, The Great Stagnation of American Education

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“I’ve noticed a fascinating phenomenon in my thirty years of teaching: schools and schooling are increasingly irrelevant to the great enterprises of the planet. No one believes anymore that scientists are trained in science classes or politicians in civics classes or poets in English classes. The truth is that schools don’t really teach anything except how to obey orders.” –John Taylor GattoDumbing Us Down: The Hidden Curriculum of Compulsory Schooling

“What’s gotten in the way of education in the United States is a theory of social engineering that says there is ONE RIGHT WAY to proceed with growing up.” John Taylor GattoDumbing Us Down: The Hidden Curriculum of Compulsory Schooling

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“A computer mistake in grade-giving resulted in academic failure of several brilliant students. After some years the mistake was discovered. Letter was sent to each student inviting him to resume his studies. Each replied he was getting along very well without education.” -John Cage

“Children usually have a natural curiosity about the world and everything in it until they get to school and somebody throws them against the locker because they get A’s and act intelligent. After that, some kids try to dumb it down and adapt.” -Joshua Neik

 

 

 

 

 

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Sleep is NOT Optional

Teens need an average of 9.25 hours of sleep each night, and the majority of adolescents get an average of 7 hours of sleep per night, and 1/4 get six hours or less. Sleep is so so important in 2 main ways. Sleep is NEEDED for your physical and mental health. It also is really important in regards to school and learning, because sleep consolidates  and stabilizes what you have been learning in school, and so you need sleep in order to learn and process new information.

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Here’s a quote from the National Sleep Foundation, in the article, Backgrounder: Later School Start Times, “The roots of the problem include poor teen sleep habits that do not allow for enough hours of quality sleep; hectic schedules with afterschool activities and jobs, homework hours and family obligations; and a clash between societal demands, such as early school start times, and biological changes that put most teens on a later sleep-wake clock. As a result, when it is time to wake up for school, the adolescent’s body says it is still the middle of the night, and he or she has had too little sleep to feel rested and alert.”

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Many schools are starting to make a change, in the students best interest. They are trying to synchronize their start and end times with the students body clock, so that students are at school at their most alert hours, and getting the full academic potential out of the student. Students can’t function without sleep. Sleep is not optional, it is biologically necessary!!

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Look how content the well rested sleepers look!!

 

Raising Standards

Hello everyone!

The documentary, “Race to Nowhere” suggests that in order to redefine success, we need to eliminate homework, make learning fun again, reward the teachers better, consider the well being of the students, and take the pressure off of standardized tests.  On the other hand, in “The Blog” section of Huffington Post, Linda Flanagan and Sarah Sangree respond to the documentary, “Race to Nowhere” (learn more about it here), suggesting another possible solution, “This is the world we live in. Maybe we should start by examining our own insecurities and regrets before setting out to change the system.

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We have a simpler solution. To borrow from Nancy Reagan, just say no: no, you may not take five APs*, no, you may not join four teams this season, no, you may not stay up until 2:00am doing homework, no, you may not volunteer three times a week at the Food Bank, no, you may not participate in activities simply to pad your resume. Whatever the consequences, you’ll survive and we’ll continue to love you.”

Personally, I think they have a very good point on limiting the stress students put on themselves because of all the things they put on their plate. However, that doesn’t address a big problem with our educational system. If students say “I cannot take 5 APs, I cannot do my homework until 2:00am”, then all it will do is put their stress level down, which yes, is a very big problem. However, as a result, students will have a larger chance of not getting into as good of colleges due to their lack of advanced courses and lack of community service hours.

In addition, saying to yourself “No to homework” late at night, will not get the homework completed, and it will affect your grades. This brings us right to the problem of how high of expectations colleges have, with the standards rising and rising.  For example, the requirement for a language is two years to graduate high school, but three years are now suggested to look good on college applications. In addition, three years of science are required, but most students are now taking four years to maximize their chances of college admission. Suddenly straight A’s aren’t good enough. Students also have to complete 200 hours of community service, while jumbling AP courses following by tests.  BUT WAIT! There’s more. You are also expected to have talents, passions and extracurriculars, such as sports and playing instruments.

All the things that “look good” for college, is the reason why students are taking too many AP courses, forcing themselves to do sports, spending a lot of time doing community service, and staying up too late completing homework, to a point where it is unhealthy. The reason students are doing all of this is to seem unique, to distinct themselves from other people. Since everyone who is going to college is achieving beyond the requirements, you can have straight A’s, have taken over two AP’s each year, have over 200 hours of community service, and look the exact same as fifty other student applicants. To the college you just look, “normal”, even though you put countless years of work and effort into your high school years.

Since students were infants, they’ve had the idea-you have to go to college to get a job,and graduating high school is a minimum, unless you want to work at McDonalds- jammed into their brains. As a result, the mindset of student’s is that all the stress and effort is worth it, to receive a decent job and make enough money to withstand a family of four.

What can YOU do to help make a change to the faulty education system?

We are humans, not robots!

Have anything to say about the topic? Please comment below!

 

 

“Race to Nowhere”

Race To Nowhere is a 2009 documentary written by Maimone Attia and directed by Vicki Abeles and Jessica Congdon. It is about the pressures of school, homework, and extra curricular activities. The idea for this film came from Abeles’s personal experience, her middle-school daughter became physically sick and was diagnosed with a stress-induced illness. Yes, you may say that doesn’t guarantee that school is what stressed her out, but Vicki Abeles made many changes at home, yet still nothing changed. She began to talk to other students and parents and began to hear the same problems over and over again about the current educational system. This inspired her to make a change and give a voice to the current system that has to ability to effect way more than the mental sanity of this generations students. You may think of students as dumb little kids, but once they become of age to start working, they are in control of a lot and their lack of a good education could alter economic growth and the increase of high school dropouts could lead to not enough people to fill high paid positions requiring a high education.

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Race to Nowhere is still a very active campaign. Visit their website here.

 

Click here for the “Contact” page on their website!

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Race to Nowhere is based on the same idea as our campaign, the faults of the United States school system.