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19 September 2007

Same Ole', Same Ole'

Open House was last night. Mostly it's the parents of the good kids who come, though I did have one parent of a struggling student show up, and she was very upset with her son for the report I gave her. Still, one reliable indicator of a good student is whether or not the parents come to open house - I'm guessing 90% of these kids will be A-B students.

The old yearbook advisor, who is now working half-days, shares my room with me in the mornings. He has been teaching for 30 years or so, and he told me he one of his good buddies was on the school board for years. His buddy's opinion is that you can pull a student's first grade cumulative folder and his socioeconomic/family records, and pretty much determine his future as a student from there on out. That is pretty stark - and deterministic - and yet it is probably true.

But some of the exceptions to that rule sure make for wonderful stories.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

And how frustrating that it is so easy to predict, right? It's a shame.

Freder1ck said...

is writing off those who aren't already successful a consequence of a misguided devotion to success?

School Master P said...

Well, this is certainly possible, and academic success isn't the only kind of success that ought to be measured in life. To listen to our politicians, you would think the only ends to schooling our "yutes" is to make them globally competitive (italics indicating a VERY IMPORTANT educational buzz-term, btw). Character gets a minimum of lip service.

I have certainly known successful students who were morally bankrupt, and some so-called successes who were mostly successful cheaters. But I do think that a kid who cannot show diligence, self-discipline, or any curiosity about the world throughout his school years is less likely to be a person of good moral character than one who does. Certainly, though, we wouldn't want to make that determination at the first grade level. And whatever grim determinations we make, we can always pit hope against them.