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Learning at its Best

I Dream of A System

I dream of a system where “public school” is not a dirty word.  A system that I would willingly allow my future children to enter, without worry.  Where good education isn’t equivalent with the depth of your pocket.  A place where the value of education is recognized and funded accordingly.

I dream of an environment where students are not ranked by their test scores or their abilities, but by the way in which they learn.  Where students are grouped together diversely, and where the method of teaching does not hold any of them back.  A place where students don’t have to be afraid to raise their hands or make mistakes and where teachers know how to help them when they do make mistakes.  Each classroom would be it’s own world, once in which every student is a welcome inhabitant.

I dream of students who believe in themselves.  They never believe they are stupid.  They are not afraid to come to school.  No student is, in reality, left behind.  They are taught not things that society at whole believes they should know, but are relevant to their lives.  I dream of a place where college is not indicative of a future, but simply a personal choice.

I dream of a system that trusts it’s teachers instead of telling them what to do. Where there is freedom in curriculum. A place where standardized testing was simply a tool of measurement  not the only tool.

I dream of a profession that does not work it’s teachers to the bone.  Hours would be regular, and pay would be comfortable.  Teaching would be a desirable career, and not something that would beat your down until you felt unable to do it.  They do not have to deal with the emotional toll of seeing students fail and feel powerless to help.

I dream of a school where parents are important, too.  Where there are people who focus on getting parents to see the importance of their children’s education, and become active participants.  Parent involvement would not be an afterthought, or something there’s not enough time for.  A place where school and community are synonymous.  The burden would not fall on just the teachers and administrators, but everyone.

I dream of a system that would allow this.

 What is your vision for our educational system?  How close or far away are we from it?  And how realistic would it be?  How can we work towards a more harmonious and beneficial system?

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About aliciarice

I spent a year working with Khon Kaen Education Initiative, an alternative education program in Northeastern Thailand. I have a B.A. in Communication with an emphasis in video production. My main interests is documentary film making.

Discussion

2 thoughts on “I Dream of A System

  1. I read this and heaved a heavy sigh… When my adult kids were very young, I lived in Oregon and was fully committed to public schools, so much so that I was on the Board of Education. Then we moved to Maine and within months, we had moved the first two in school to a private school. Are you familiar with Nancy Atwell and The Center for Teaching and Learning? Most teachers are school reformers are in awe of her. Well, that is where my adult six children when to school for nearly 8 years each. I was the chair of the committee that got their middle school addition built. Blah, blah…now I have an 8 year old in second grade in a very small public school here in Maine and I want him to have the same education his older siblings got—with room to be an individual and to learn his own way. Do you have suggestions? At this point, I know he’s gifted, and truly think unschooling or home schooling might be best but he loves his buddies. Bah–it makes me sad that some days he comes home feeling stupid when he is anything but…

    Posted by OneHotMess | December 11, 2012, 12:38 pm
    • Well, I know some students here in Thailand that have form of group homeschooling. The parents were unhappy with the public education (which can be even more rocky here) and so they got together and created a mini school of their own. I don’t know too much about the details, but these kids are amazing. They can do everything, including speaking near perfect English. From my understanding, they do get a lot of freedom. Each parent teaches one or two subjects, which I assume would allow them to still have jobs. I don’t think there are more than 10 children. I assume that their finances also allow them to do this, which means it might not be something that everyone has the resources to do.

      Do you think you might be able to find other parents who would be interested something like that? I’d also be willing to ask one of the students more about it if you’re interested!

      Posted by aliciarice | December 11, 2012, 12:46 pm

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