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Sun Dec 9, 2012, 11:37 PM

Would you buy your way out of bad public schools by sending your child to a private school?

If you could afford it, would you buy your way out of bad public schools by sending your child to a private school? Or would you support the local public schools, no matter what?

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Reply Would you buy your way out of bad public schools by sending your child to a private school? (Original post)
BrentWil Dec 2012 OP
elleng Dec 2012 #1
graham4anything Dec 2012 #2
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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Sun Dec 9, 2012, 11:38 PM

1. Did it, for 2 daughters, in DC.

'Local schools no matter what' not at all feasible. We were fortunate to be able to afford it, as 2 attorneys working for Fed. govt., but no doubt we would have had a different 'lifestyle' if we hadn't done this.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Sun Dec 9, 2012, 11:43 PM

2. NO.

 

the disadvantages are far outweighed by the long term benefits of segregating kids in some tonied private school.
Kids who get out of private school, then say, go to a large major college find it hard to adapt when they no longer think they are "special". Same with religious schools (grade/middle(or as we call it here in NY area-junior high schools).

IF I had my way there would be no private schools, they would all be public, and I would make teachers rotate to all districts rich or poor.

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Response to graham4anything (Reply #2)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 12:00 AM

11. Private/parochial schools my daughters attended were very well integrated,

thoroughly represented demographic of DC community, and they both choose colleges that, they hoped, would be similarly integrated. Schools my daughters attended didn't, fortunately, have the 'special/snobby' attitude you seem to expect.

I attended public schools all the way through, until law school, and expected my children would do the same, but when it came to decent education, wasn't possible to do public where we lived and provide good educations for our daughters, unfortunately.

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Response to elleng (Reply #11)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 12:26 AM

19. I can only speak from extended family members

 

brothers in law all sent their kids to private schools, (the youngest in Brooklyn sent his 3 to a religious school, and the oldest is now in high school this year and she is having a very hard time adapting to the differences. But then she also is now a freshman, and HS for freshmen is always tough anyhow. Most people I know though were public school through highschool.

I myself went to two different NYC city colleges as did wife, and cousins and most all of my friends from the area. Walked or took the NYC regular bus (no school buses) through high school,(long walk to HS), bus/train to college.

They should spend the money making all public schools equal as possible as said, they should rotate the teachers. All it takes is one great teacher who can break through to a kid, and it can change a kids life IMHO.

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Response to graham4anything (Reply #19)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 12:39 AM

22. Yes, 'one great teacher.'

Our 'system' of financing public education is miserable, has been for a long time. Fortunately my K-4 grades were in Brooklyn, so I know something about how good public city schools can be, moved to Long Island, to a town renown for excellent public schools; very lucky.

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Response to elleng (Reply #22)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:02 AM

30. financing...it's unfair money talks w/schooling.Youtube on how it should be(Venus explains the atom)

 

It is why I would love to ideally see a rotating system so all schools are equal, and no need for private schools in big cities at any rate.
(I can't speak for outside of the east coast area.

And of course transportation is different in a state or place where houses are far apart and schools take awhile.

It needs to be fair of course. Which it isn't.

NYC and NJ are different in that in NJ there are 1000s of different towns and each has its own system(though these days some are combining). In NYC it was the entire city based


I think there should be individuality allowed based on what each student/class needs.

I for one was a bad multiple choice test taker where it was more than True/False, but aced every essay I was ever given.
The difference between 95s and 75-80s (A+ and Bminus) based on the types of test
Those A, B, C, D, two of the above, none of the above, all of the above did not work for me.


The episode of WKRP in Cincinnati, where the DJ Venus(actor Tim Reid) was attempting to break through to a kid who did not want to be in school, and told him about the atom, said it perfectly (though yes the episode is a bit corny) but that type of breakthrough is what each kid needs.

I wish I had a teacher explain it like Venus did here. To this day I remember that episode and it makes so much sense. If only all teachers were like that. Science never was my subject

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Response to graham4anything (Reply #30)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:43 AM

50. The difference between good public schools and terrible public schools

has nothing to do with the teacher and everything to do with the kids.

Second half of 5th grade I had a really nasty teacher in a classroom that was 80% Asian and shit got done.

All of 6th grade I had a really dedicated teacher in a classroom that was... kinda ghetto.... Half of the kids in the class couldn't read, there were fights every day, and getting even the most basic things done was a struggle.

Switching the teachers would not have helped the kids.

Switching parents would have been a better bet.

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Response to XemaSab (Reply #50)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 07:00 AM

82. Kids only know what they are taught at home. So I would say that most of what happens in school

depends on the parental guidance and discipline originating at home. Sadly, when parents have to work two or three low-paying jobs because of many social factors including their own lack of proper parental guidance for the same reasons, we have a vicious cycle that repeats in public schools. Sometimes the impact of an unfair, unjust, systemic racism is the beginning of the cycle. Parents who want to play by the rules, work hard, but who themselves are treated unfairly or mistreated pass on victim attitudes to their children and this fosters bad attitudes among children in our public schools. Public schools are forced to take children from all backgrounds at all times. So their task is much more difficult. I have no doubts that given a class 80% African American children of professional, well-educated, upper middle income parents, the performance would have been similar to the 80% Asian class mentioned.

Also, my granddaughter who is African American is at age 7 taking Chinese. There is one other AA child and two whites in her class. The rest are Chinese American (10). The most unruly and undisciplined children in the class are the Chinese children who continually talk over the instructor (Chinese female), get up and walk around and disrupt the class frequently. Even the teacher told the parents at a joint parental conference that the families of the disruptive children would have to have their children behave better or be removed from the class. My daughter's decision was already made, after the sessions are over that she paid for in advance, she is removing my granddaughter and seeking instruction elsewhere.

I might add that my grand children were all started out in private religious or non-religious schools simply because the public school system does not provide for adequate before and after care. Most private schools provide this service that is included in the tuition. We are by no means wealthy but we are not poor either. My daughter is a single mom (widow) raising two girls 6, 7. She must work and therefore needs reasonable before and after care. I help as much as i can but she does not live near me. I had to do the same thing with my daughters even though they had a dad in the home. We both had to work to live above the poverty level. Without affordable childcare for before and after care, we placed our children in private day-care and elementary schools that provided before and after care. The dire need for childcare services is another burden on working families and our school system.

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Response to XemaSab (Reply #50)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 07:18 AM

83. Cool. So it doesn't matter who the teachers are?

Good to know! Let's hire TFA for every position and save a lot of money

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Response to Recursion (Reply #83)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 11:03 AM

113. I'm hoping you forgot the sarcasm icon

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Response to proud2BlibKansan (Reply #113)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 11:15 AM

116. I'm annoyed by two contradictory statements

1) No teacher can improve the performances of the kids in the horrible schools, because they have horrible home lives
2) It's important that we have highly trained and experienced teachers in those classrooms

Both can't be true.

Either some teachers can get better performances out of those kids and some can't, in which case we need to get those teachers in those classrooms and the current ones out of those classrooms, or it doesn't matter who is teaching in those classrooms, and we should just hire the cheap TFA drones.

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Response to Recursion (Reply #116)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 11:47 AM

126. The 'answer' is there IS no single answer, of course; It takes a village.

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Response to Recursion (Reply #116)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 09:08 PM

166. I think you misconstrued what I was saying

My point was that the teachers in bad schools are in many cases more gifted and more dedicated than the teachers in good schools, but the circumstances that they are faced with make their jobs almost impossible.

IMHO, schools that are labeled as "failing" (or what have you) should be able to incorporate more rigorous disciplinary standards. If there's one kid in the class who is screwing things up for everyone else, the teacher should be able to kick the kid out of the class and resume teaching. It sucks to be that one kid, but it's better than throwing away the educational opportunity for 25 other kids.

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Response to graham4anything (Reply #30)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:43 AM

52. Good one, graham.

Another example (kind of
One afternoon, 6th graders at my daughters' former school performed an original play about child refugees from the civil war in South Sudan. "Strong Spirits and Wise Minds," a multimedia musical production, deepened their understandings of this region.
http://www.facebook.com/#!/lowellschooldc

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Response to graham4anything (Reply #30)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 07:20 AM

84. DC spends more per student than Fairfax County

Some problems aren't about money.

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Response to Recursion (Reply #84)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 11:54 AM

129. about money and 'history' of the district, culture, expectations, power of those interested, bureauc

Money is certainly one of the issues, but It Takes a Village.

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Response to graham4anything (Reply #19)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 02:05 AM

62. And a few bad years in a row can break a child's spirit.

My children's elementary school was great -- for the first two children. Then the principal changed, and the NCLB tests were put in place, and everything went downhill. A ridiculous amount of pressure was being put on the teachers, and they responded in two ways: the excellent, older teachers took early retirement; and the young teachers put enormous pressure on their young students.

I kept my youngest there all the way through 5th grade, and that was a serious mistake. Just because it had been a great school years earlier, it wasn't any longer.

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Response to graham4anything (Reply #2)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:30 AM

46. My university was WAAAAAAY whiter

than my private school.

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Response to XemaSab (Reply #46)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:48 AM

56. Daughters had somewhat similar experiences,

one attended public university (West Virginia!) and other attended Catholic university in Philly, not quite as integrated as Catholic high school in DC. The girls wondered about this, and were not happy about it.

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Response to graham4anything (Reply #2)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:56 AM

58. The Catholic school my daughter attended for a while was MUCH more diverse in terms of

economic and racial backgrounds than the public schools in my suburban area at the time.

Also, I think students who attend good private high schools are often more prepared to handle large universities, because they don't get lost in the shuffle and they are encouraged, in a private school, to be assertive about getting their academic needs met. My son went from a private high school to a university of 35,000, and I think it was his background that prepared him for this.

My children went to a combination of public, independent, and Catholic schools, depending on what they needed at the time. Since we could afford to do this, I wouldn't have sacrificed them to some unrealistic ideal about public schools being the best for everyone under every circumstance.

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Response to graham4anything (Reply #2)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:59 AM

61. Not every private school is "tonied".

Our son goes to a Catholic school that serves poor and working class families in the Mission District and Western Addition. Kids there are primarily Latino, African American and Filipino.

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Response to graham4anything (Reply #2)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:07 PM

140. Way to thin the ranks of teachers

 

Would you like your job to constantly force you to change schools, most likely requiring you to move?

Sure, our military do it but that is the nature of the job and their moves are very expensive.

Most people prefer not to have to regularly move and force their spouse to find a new job in a new location.

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Response to graham4anything (Reply #2)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 10:04 PM

170. I don't know where you get that idea. All of the private schools our son attended (3 of them)

were well integrated and he had no problem at all going to a public high school or going on to a well-paid trade (electrician). He also has no trouble talking and dealing with rich or poor people he is acquainted with or works with.

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Response to graham4anything (Reply #2)

Tue Dec 11, 2012, 04:31 PM

190. Yes.

 

Private school kids tend not to do too well in the real world despite high test scores.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Sun Dec 9, 2012, 11:45 PM

3. I probably wouldn't want to live with a bunch of people who won't pay for quality schools.

But I guess if I had to live there, I'd consider any options. The only people who I view as being morally obligated to send their kids to the public school are the teachers, administrators, and politicians. The reason for this is that the quality of the school depends a good deal on them fulfilling their responsibilities.

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Response to JVS (Reply #3)

Sun Dec 9, 2012, 11:50 PM

6. Poor districts don't have the tax base. NT

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Response to BrentWil (Reply #6)

Sun Dec 9, 2012, 11:57 PM

10. And I consider the bad schools of such an area part of the tradeoff in buying a house in the area.

Rather have a smaller home in a good district than a nicer home in a shitty district.

Where I live there are also some well off areas that don't care to fund and there are also some poorer areas that are within good districts.

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Response to JVS (Reply #10)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:06 AM

35. 'shitty' districts are typically majority rentals owned by people who live elsewhere, often in the

 

'good' areas, often in a different state or even outside the country.

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Response to HiPointDem (Reply #35)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:45 AM

53. Is that a fact?

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Response to XemaSab (Reply #53)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 05:51 AM

75. yes. shitty districts are typically poor districts and poor districts are typically majority rental.

 

central falls RI, where all the teachers were fired & which recently declared bankruptcy, being kind of a poster child.

Central Falls compared to Rhode Island state average:

- Median household income below state average.

- Median house value below state average.

- Black race population percentage significantly above state average.

- Hispanic race population percentage significantly above state average.

- Foreign-born population percentage significantly above state average.

- Renting percentage significantly above state average.

- Number of rooms per house below state average.

- House age significantly above state average.

- Institutionalized population percentage above state average.

- Number of college students below state average.

- Percentage of population with a bachelor's degree or higher significantly below state average.


Read more: http://www.city-data.com/city/Central-Falls-Rhode-Island.html#ixzz2Ee3HAF58


72% of students in the central falls school district live in rental housing v. 37% in the state as a whole.

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Response to HiPointDem (Reply #75)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 06:33 PM

152. OK, but look at it from the other direction

I'll buy that the majority of shitty districts are poor. But look at the other direction: what percent of poor districts have shitty schools?

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Response to Recursion (Reply #152)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 06:42 PM

156. i'd say close to the same percent, since poor districts typically have more social problems & crime.

 

which are probably the key contributors to 'shitty schools,' contra the teacher-blamers.

at any rate, the statistical tendency is: the poorer the district, the worse the average academic performance in that district (as measured by test scores) & the higher incidence of special needs students.

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Response to HiPointDem (Reply #156)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 07:47 PM

159. While guesswork is obviously the right solution here, humor me and let's try to find some data

This is actually a hugely important question: I'll grant that nearly all shitty school districts are poor. It's terrifically important to figure out what percentage of poor districts are shitty. I went to a poor but non-shitty school district, for instance.

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Response to Recursion (Reply #159)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 10:49 PM

172. Urban poor or rural poor? or suburban poor?

this can make a difference.

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Response to Recursion (Reply #159)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 11:20 PM

175. to some extent it probably depends on school funding arrangements and the type of 'poor'.

 

as well as the type of people who own the property (small property owners in same city, outside investors, corporate, etc. and also the type of intermediate management company, if any.)

i don't know where you'd get such information on an overall basis. specific communities maybe, but an overview of multiple communities -- dunno.

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Response to HiPointDem (Reply #35)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 07:57 PM

160. So?

 

rental property pay just as much property taxes as single family properties. And even though the owners live in different part of town, the renters living in that part of town still vote for property tax increases and such. So where the the owners live is completely irrelevant to the discussion.

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Response to Dokkie (Reply #160)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 11:18 PM

174. In fact, the owners in central falls mostly don't live in central falls. and so it is in lots of

 

low-income neighborhoods, including my own, as i've verified via tax rolls. owners in places like seattle, las vegas, etc.

absentee owners and slumlords who don't give a shit about anything except keeping their own taxes low. they don't care if the town goes to hell. it's actually better for them, lower taxes.

yes, it *does* matter where property owners live.

absentee ownership, originally, ownership of land by proprietors who did not reside on the land or cultivate it themselves but enjoyed income from it. The term absentee ownership has assumed a derogatory social connotation not inherent in its literal meaning, based on the assumption that absentee owners lack personal interest in and knowledge of their lands and tenants.

Absentee ownership has been a social and political issue for centuries in many parts of the world. It was, for example, a basis for the criticism directed at a portion of the court nobility in pre-Revolutionary France and was also prominent in the debates concerning the exploitation of Irish tenants by English absentee owners in the 19th century. It continues to be a crucial economic issue in the land reform programs of many developing countries.

http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/1716/absentee-ownership

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Response to HiPointDem (Reply #174)

Tue Dec 11, 2012, 03:01 AM

180. But absentee landlords don't elect people who set the taxes and run the schools, the residents do.

If your landlord lives in Las Vegas you can vote for local politicians to raise the property tax and there isn't a thing your landlord can do about it. He can't even vote in your local election. So how exactly are absentee landlords an excuse for a lack of political action by the community?

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Response to JVS (Reply #180)

Tue Dec 11, 2012, 03:50 AM

181. yes, you might think so. yet it rarely happens. possibly you can think of some reasons why

 

that might be so.

so far as the schools in central falls go, they've been out of local control for some time. control & funding rests with the state, & that was the case even before all the teachers were fired and before the city's bankruptcy.

poverty rate is 30%, median household income $22K, about 50% hispanic with a high percent of recent immigrants.

many of the rentals in central falls are owned by folks in richer communities in the area. central falls has historically been a cheap-labor ghetto for those communities.

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Response to HiPointDem (Reply #174)

Tue Dec 11, 2012, 09:38 AM

187. You still are no getting my point

 

Remember, it is the people living in those apt building who are voting for lower property taxes. The landlord couldn't careless what his/her rental property tax is because he could always pass the increase down to the renters. This is why renters in those poor neigbourhood always vote down property tax increases in their area even though it will improve their schools and benefit them all.

Everyone is a bit selfish in this story, so please lets not put all the blame on the absentee landlord.

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Response to Dokkie (Reply #187)

Tue Dec 11, 2012, 03:34 PM

189. the people in those rentals are likely not voting at all. CF is half hispanic, many of them recent

 

immigrants. CF schools have a high percent of ESL students. & poor people vote less than the middle or upper classes.

no, "everyone" in this story is not "a bit selfish". & blame for social problems should fall most heavily on those with the most power & resources, as it's those people who have the most power to change the situation.

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Response to BrentWil (Reply #6)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 10:48 AM

103. And that's exactly the problem

public education tied to local real estate value

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Response to Brainstormy (Reply #103)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 11:50 AM

127. RIGHT, has been the problem in this country FOREVER,

and states have failed to address it, for political reasons: Not in MY backyard.

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Response to JVS (Reply #3)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 02:08 AM

65. Our district is regularly ranked among the best in the country but that doesn't mean

that every school in it is right for every kid.

So my kids each spent years in public schools, and also years in other schools -- depending on what they needed. And I happily paid for and volunteered for the annual public school levy campaigns.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Sun Dec 9, 2012, 11:45 PM

4. Is this a

"Would you buy your way out of bad public schools by sending your child to a private school?"

...trick question? It seems familiar.

Could Federal Educational Vouchers Aimed at the Poor and Useable in Public Schools Work?
http://www.democraticunderground.com/1002312347

Jindal voucher overhaul unconstitutionally diverts public funds to private schools, judge rules
http://www.democraticunderground.com/1014322479

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Response to ProSense (Reply #4)

Sun Dec 9, 2012, 11:51 PM

7. How? A rather simple question for you as a person...

And would you?

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Sun Dec 9, 2012, 11:46 PM

5. private schools are extremely expensive. Private high school tuition costs as much as a state

college. At least in my neck of the woods.

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Response to antigop (Reply #5)

Sun Dec 9, 2012, 11:52 PM

8. Hence, the part, "if you could afford it" NT

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Response to BrentWil (Reply #8)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 12:59 AM

29. that's the point...very few people can "afford it", esp. when you look at the median family income.

nt

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Response to antigop (Reply #29)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 04:23 PM

149. No, your point evades the question ...

 

... of would you do it if YOU could afford it, not how many or how few could afford it.

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Response to antigop (Reply #5)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 12:48 AM

26. private school

The cost of private school is crazy! The top schools around here cost $25,000+ for high school. That is almost twice as much as the private college where I went, including room & board. There are other schools of course, but they are all expensive. Having said all that, if I could, I would pay for private.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Sun Dec 9, 2012, 11:55 PM

9. People either do that or move to a community with good public schools

People try to give their children a good start in life.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 12:01 AM

12. I would send my child to private school if I could afford it

My child has autism and the public school system does not have the funding nor the flexibility to properly educate my child. If the democratic politicians want me to keep my child in public school then they need to show that they are actually doing something to fix the failing school system and I do not see evidence of that. Our entire public school system is a complete failure. We need to be modeling our system off of more successful countries like some of the Nordic countries or Asian countries. Unfortunately we don't have any politicians with enough courage to suggest such a drastic change.

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Response to liberal_at_heart (Reply #12)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 12:17 AM

17. Japanese schools aren't "successful"

They value rote memorization (= cram schools) over critical thinking. Conformity is rammed down students' throats--from wearing uniforms to kids being ostracized if they have the "temerity" to ask the teacher questions. And widespread bullying was a problem in Japan decades before it reached critical mass here in the USA.

Hell is to be a Japanese student.

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Response to lbrtbell (Reply #17)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 12:22 AM

18. you don't have to go to that extreme but American kids could stand

to have their expectations raised a little. Kids can rise to a challenge. In fact done right rising to a challenge and actually accomplishing something raises their self esteem. With our family the way we handled it was we told our able bodied child that she had to keep a B average. An occasional C was okay but it was not to be the norm. If she does not understand a topic in class she is expected to seek out help from teachers, fellow students, and after school tutoring clubs. One adjustment we made with our daughter is we found we were pushing too hard for a specific GPA. We wanted to see if she could hit a 3.5 GPA. Even with seeking out help she just couldn't reach a 3.5 GPA so we stopped pushing for it. But we still expect her to work hard, seek out help, and do her best. With our autistic child we tell him that he must put forth an effort but we do not focus on grades with him. With him the expectation is to try hard. If we notice that he is not trying hard he gets in trouble. If he is doing his very best then we are happy with whatever grade he gets.

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Response to liberal_at_heart (Reply #18)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 05:58 AM

76. plenty of kids doing poorly in school already have more 'challenges' than they can handle. the

 

ability to rise to a challenge depends on a lot more than simply setting out a challenge & expecting them to rise.

it depends on parental support such as you are giving your own child & social support such as safe communities with decent-paying jobs and career paths for the adults that allow parents enough time with their families to support their children, as you do. or else enough income to buy reasonable substitutes for such parental support (as the super-rich do).

your personal situation is not everyone's situation.

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Response to lbrtbell (Reply #17)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 09:48 PM

168. It depends on where one is in Japan, I guess

I have quite of bit of experience with the Japanese school system, probably more than anyone else in this forum. The situation has changed dramatically since 1997 or so. Most of the students I have known seem pretty well adjusted, although there have been a few troublemakers as well. Elementary schoolers don't have to wear uniforms, although most junior high and high school kids do. The kids I've talked to don't seem to mind the uniforms, though, since they don't have to plan on what clothes to wear to school and thus don't have to keep up with the latest teen fashions in school. However, they really should ditch the requirement for girls to always wear skirts, because they can be damn cold in the winter. And the boys' jackets can be damn hot in the summer.

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Response to liberal_at_heart (Reply #12)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:11 AM

37. US districts with less than 10% poverty outscore other countries. US districts with less than 25%

 

poverty score in the top tier internationally. US schools with less than 50% poverty score above average internationally.

It's only districts with more than 50% poverty that score worse in international comparisons, but there are so many of them in the US (many more than in comparable foreign countries), so on average, the US scores in the middle of international rankings.

As it always has, BTW - the US has *never* been at the top of international rankings, even when it was leading the world technologically.

The 'problem' with US schools has *nothing* do with the 'system'. It has everything to do with the US tolerance for high poverty, low wages, etc.

Americans seem uninterested in changing that situation, preferring to enroll their kids in privatized schools and blame the unemployment/wages situation on uneducated lazy workers.

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Response to HiPointDem (Reply #37)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:16 AM

38. we live in an affluent community

Our school district does score pretty well but like many on this board have pointed out scores mean very little. Even with ample local taxes the school district still does not have the amount of funding necessary to accommodate the massive number of students it has. Class sizes are too large and there is not enough emphasis on critical thinking. It is all about memorization so the school can have those good test stats.

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Response to liberal_at_heart (Reply #38)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:17 AM

40. the international tests have nothing to do with the memorization & test stats you're talking about.

 

they are tests no one is able to prep for, random samples & special tests. they've been given for 40-50 years.

and all the talk about how much 'better' international school supposedly are is based on those tests.

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Response to HiPointDem (Reply #40)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:25 AM

43. well I'm talking about real time

My kids are in school now and they are not getting the education I want them to get. Out of the 13 years my daughter has been in school I can think of two classes that made a difference in her life. 7th grade science where she learned organization and how to meet a dead line. Up until this point she was very disorganized and had trouble with time management. 7th grade science taught her time management. And 11th grade advanced history taught her critical thinking skills. It was the only class in 13 years that focused on critical thinking. I can't begin to describe how thankful I was that those two classes taught her those skills. It is because of those two classes that I feel confident that she is ready for college. I have explained in other threads about how I feel about the education my autistic son is getting, so I won't get into it in this thread.

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Response to liberal_at_heart (Reply #43)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:30 AM

45. that is your personal situation. don't generalize from that to statements like "we need to do

 

what (insert country) does".

no, we don't. we have a decent education system and a third-world jobs system. americans seem happy to keep the jobs system and privatize the education system -- which benefits only the top 20% but makes the bottom 80% *even worse*.

enjoy living behind your barbed wire in mad max land.

the upper middle class (top 20%) anxiety about education is a reaction to their class anxiety over the top 1% pulling away from them. their way of dealing with it (to support more privatization) guarantees it will continue.

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Response to HiPointDem (Reply #45)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:34 AM

48. no we do not have a decent educational system

I am so dissatisfied with our public school system that I have become a single issue voter and education is my single issue. I'm tired of democratic politicians ignoring how bad our public schools are. It is time for someone to have the courage to stand up and demand to spend the money and to make structural changes to make it better.

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Response to liberal_at_heart (Reply #48)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:43 AM

51. they're making plenty of structural changes; all for the worse, and proven so. yes, we have a

 

decent education system. are there things that could be improved? of course. none of what's happening today is making improvements.

yes, we have an education system that is by & large 'decent'.

we have a jobs/wages system that descends into third world situations at the bottom. we have a corrupt political class and an upper-middle class that has lost all sense of the common good -- a typical situation in a situation of decadence.

the 'schools' will not improve until the society does -- they are a reflection of the larger problems. people can try to buy their way out of these problems and find a private solution, but that will in fact only make the general problems worse.

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Response to HiPointDem (Reply #51)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:48 AM

57. I didn't say I agreed with turning public funds over to charters

I don't support charter schools, but flexibility is something public schools could learn from charters. We are obviously not going to agree so I am going to quit posting for tonight. It is bedtime anyway. Okay so I had one thing I had to say before I go to bed. One of the biggest structural changes I would make would be to no longer tie money directly to how many students are enrolled in a school district. I think this is one of the biggest problems that causes over crowded class rooms. We need smaller classrooms, but the way things are structured right now there doesn't seem to be a way to solve this problem.

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Response to liberal_at_heart (Reply #57)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 06:01 AM

77. public schools are perfectly capable of flexibility. however, that is not the path that is being

 

funded or encouraged by the national government.

yes, we need smaller class sizes, especially for high-needs students. again, that is not the path that is being funded by national and local governments.

"the way things are being structured now" is that schools are deliberately being starved of funds by unfunded mandates and financial crisis in states and localities, and forced into privatization.

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Response to HiPointDem (Reply #77)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 10:31 AM

97. this has been going on for decades

This new privatizing by republicans is not the first problem we've had with public education. My son who was at a 3rd grade math level was forced to take 6th grade math. That was the district policy. That is the inflexibility I am talking about. I am tired of democrats griping at me for criticizing public education. I will not be silent on this issue. Yes, I agree the republicans have it wrong on this issue. That means the democrats need to come up with a solution that is better. I don't hear any democrats even talking about it let alone addressing the problems. I will not be silent. This public education system is failing our students including mine and I will criticize it until the democrats come up with a platform to address the problem.

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Response to liberal_at_heart (Reply #97)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 10:51 AM

106. criticize whatever happened to your son all you like. critizing 'public education' in general

 

requires a lot more evidence than you are bringing to the table with your repetition of 'public education is failing our students'.

the democratic education platform is identical to the republican education platform. PRIVATIZE. and you are supporting it.

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Response to HiPointDem (Reply #106)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 10:55 AM

109. sorry but trying to tell me I support privatization won't silence me

If you notice a lot of people on this board have or are putting their children in private school because they are dissatisfied with the current public school system. If the democrats want parents to keep their children in the public school system then they need to come up with a better solution than the republicans. I voted no on the charter amendement on our state's ballot this year, but I will no longer be silent on this issue. And I will use my vote to vote for politicians who actually have an answer to this issue not just excuses.

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Response to liberal_at_heart (Reply #109)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 10:59 AM

110. and they are thereby supporting privatization. neither the democrats nor the republicans want

 

to keep students in public schools -- particularly students from the upper-middle class to upper-class demographic heavily represented here at DU. They want you to leave the system so it can be privatized.

Thanks for helping.

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Response to HiPointDem (Reply #110)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 11:00 AM

111. so when my child comes home crying and thinking he is stupid what do you expect me to do?

You know what I don't even care what you have to say anymore. You are going on ignore.

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Response to liberal_at_heart (Reply #111)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 11:02 AM

112. truth hurts

 

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Response to liberal_at_heart (Reply #48)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 11:05 PM

173. Don't paint all public schools with the same brush.

Washington, DC, has some of the weakest public school schools in the nation. In the suburban counties around it are some of the very best public school systems in the country. It is all about affluence.

One of those schools, Thomas Jefferson in Fairfax, VA, is considered the best public high school in the country.

Our school system, Montgomery County, Maryland, has all types of services for autistic children, and other children with disabilities. Part of that is both the affluence of the county and the huge size of the system, which gives the numbers for such specialized services.

One local high school pulls down national Intel science awards frequently. Public school education covers a huge spectrum of possibilities.

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Response to HiPointDem (Reply #45)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:58 AM

60. Are you for real?

It's not even about what other countries are doing, it's about what we could be doing.

For example, in high school English we read about a book a month. I'm a fast reader and I could have done a book a week, including discussion and analysis, but instead we went through the standards at a glacial pace.

Why is that? Is it because most students don't have the reading skills to knock out "1984" in a weekend? If that's the case, how is that acceptable at a high school level? Or if the students are able to keep up with a faster regimin, why isn't that done?

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Response to XemaSab (Reply #60)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 02:11 AM

67. we could be doing lots of things. that doesn't mean that our education system is below

 

international standards. 'what other countries are doing' was indeed the comment i was reacting to.

btw, it's "regimen".

The best predictor of academic achievement & IQ = parents' income & class.

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Response to HiPointDem (Reply #67)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 02:12 AM

68. Hey, I can't spell for shit

I went to public school for 8 years.

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Response to XemaSab (Reply #68)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 02:14 AM

69. i also went to public school all my life, & i spell great.

 

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Response to HiPointDem (Reply #69)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 02:17 AM

70. You say while totally ignoring capitalization.

n/t

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Response to XemaSab (Reply #70)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 02:22 AM

71. i ignore capitalization on chat boards because it makes typing faster. i am quite able to capitalize

 

properly in formal writing. chat boards aren't formal or professional writing.

i learned the rules of capitalization in a public school, which is also where i learned to type.

i also learned in high school english classes that the style one uses to write varies according to the venue & audience, a point which was reinforced in college and of course, in all the reading i did in & outside school, for example:

anyone lived in a pretty how town

by E. E. Cummings

anyone lived in a pretty how town
(with up so floating many bells down)
spring summer autumn winter
he sang his didn't he danced his did

Women and men(both little and small)
cared for anyone not at all
they sowed their isn't they reaped their same
sun moon stars rain

children guessed(but only a few
and down they forgot as up they grew
autumn winter spring summer)
that noone loved him more by more

when by now and tree by leaf
she laughed his joy she cried his grief
bird by snow and stir by still
anyone's any was all to her

someones married their everyones
laughed their cryings and did their dance
(sleep wake hope and then)they
said their nevers they slept their dream

stars rain sun moon
(and only the snow can begin to explain
how children are apt to forget to remember
with up so floating many bells down)

one day anyone died i guess
(and noone stooped to kiss his face)
busy folk buried them side by side
little by little and was by was

all by all and deep by deep
and more by more they dream their sleep
noone and anyone earth by april
wish by spirit and if by yes.

Women and men(both dong and ding)
summer autumn winter spring
reaped their sowing and went their came
sun moon stars rain

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Response to XemaSab (Reply #60)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 11:37 AM

124. It should ring a Bell. nt

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Response to liberal_at_heart (Reply #12)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:47 PM

142. Alas, many ed deform efforts stick it to kids with disabilities

Charter schools, for instance, are notorious for "counseling out" (strongly encouraging to enroll elsewhere) kids who, for whatever reason, are dragging down their all-important test scores. In New Orleans, where more than half the schools post-Katrina are charters, kids with disabilities are pretty much ghettoized within the state-run public "Recovery School District".

And if your public school is unable to educate your child itself, it is required under IDEA to consider other options, such as placement in a neighboring districvt or even a private placement (paid for by the district).

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 12:03 AM

13. We spent our son's college fund to send him to private high school

His older sister had already dropped out of high school in 10th grade (got a GED later) -- when she was cutting all classes after home room no one seemed to notice or care that she was absent, nor did they phone me. Our son was in jr. hi and his attitude at school sucked, sucked, sucked.

My husband (the kids' stepdad) saw an article in the LA Times about a school we never heard of, and it sounded absolutely ideal for our son. We took him for a visit and he looked like he'd died and gone to heaven, like he'd do anything to go there and stay in. It was a great success. When he was finally ready to go to college, he put himself through.

We DO support public education. We would never, ever vote for vouchers or any other scheme to defund public schools. We both grew up financially marginal (middle class mostly by aspiration and not income) and private schooling was the furthest thing from our families' plans for ourselves and siblings.

BUT my husband and I were educated in the post-Sputnik era when the US was competing with the USSR in training future scientists. We grew up in states (he in New York city, and I in Hawai'i) where the respective dominant ethnic groups were all for rigorous education for their kids, and were both the largest number of teachers and the parents who pushed their kids to learn, no excuses thank you. It impacts the entire community when that is the case. We were completely unprepared for California in the mid-1990s.

The decision we made had to do with this: we could not save the public school system, but we were certainly obligated to save our own kids, and we were just damn sorry we didn't figure out what was going on in time to get out daughter out.

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Response to Hekate (Reply #13)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 12:13 PM

133. We made basically the same decision: that if they went to a private high school

they'd do fine at the state university.

But if they fell overboard in high school, we could forget about college.

So it made more sense to us to put money in at the high school level.

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Response to Hekate (Reply #13)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 06:34 PM

153. Phrased quite well...

"The decision we made had to do with this: we could not save the public school system, but we were certainly obligated to save our own kids, and we were just damn sorry we didn't figure out what was going on in time to get out daughter out."

I like the way you phrased that. But, I do believe there is a certain part of the population, DU included, who would feel more comfortable if you were willing to sacrifice your child on the altar of public school education as a loyalty test.

Unfortunately, I'm not sure you'd ever forgive yourself as a parent if you did.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 12:04 AM

14. I moved to a better school district.

Last edited Mon Dec 10, 2012, 12:36 AM - Edit history (1)

In the end it was a better investment than private schools.

Texas is a tough place to find a good school though. Before we moved I paid to send her to a different public school. I had to drive her there and pick her up. Still, it was worth it. At least she had the diversity of a public school.

Just to be clear. The first school was so over crowded due to cutbacks my daughter had too large of class sizes. The teachers were so over worked they couldn't be effective.

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Response to Lone_Star_Dem (Reply #14)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 12:13 AM

15. the public high school my son was headed for is going to have 30 special education kids in it

It is an affluent community with plenty of local taxes to support the school, but even the local taxes are not enough to support the sheer number of kids they have. We are headed to a smaller community and a smaller school. They won't have the same amount of local taxes but it will be a smaller school so hopefully the class size will be smaller. That in itself will be a blessing. Special needs kids need extra support. That is what special education is suppose to be about. That is what it is suppose to do, give extra support. We have seen no extra support because the class sizes are too big, the funding just isn't there and there is not enough flexibility for the special needs kids.

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Response to liberal_at_heart (Reply #15)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 12:33 AM

20. That's not dissimilar to my situation.

I moved out of a more funded, yet over worked school district, into one less funded but with smaller class sizes. The idea was to have more personalized attention from the teachers. I already had a working relationship with the school prior to her switch. Which put me more at ease. In the end she went to a smaller school, but they have a much higher college bound rate. Her education ended up being much better.

It worked for us. Hopefully, you'll have the same outcome. Sometimes a little personal attention can go a long way with a child. It's impossible for teachers to provide 100% when they're stretched too thin. Everyone suffers in a situation like that.

My best wishes to you and your son. I can relate to the personal battle of trying to get your child a quality education now days.

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Response to Lone_Star_Dem (Reply #20)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 12:43 AM

23. thank you

I'm glad it worked out for you. At least I know it can work. Maybe it will work for us too.

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Response to Lone_Star_Dem (Reply #20)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 12:53 AM

27. We opted for the smaller class size also.

Both my daughters went K-12 to a small private school (total census for all grades was about 140 students). The public schools in our area were fine academically; but the census' were large, and we wanted a more favorable teacher-student ratio. They both received excellent educations that fully prepared them for university. The oldest excelled in the UC system, and is now an eye surgeon. The younger did well enough to receive a full tuition scholarship to an excellent university, and is now a Auditor/CPA for one of the big 5 accounting firms. And, most importantly, they are both healthy, well adjusted young people.

Even though the K-12 school was academically demanding for both of them, the small student census allowed much more personal attention. That school was like a second home for them.

We are fortunate that we were able to afford it, and we don't regret the hefty expense involved.

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Response to Adsos Letter (Reply #27)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 04:07 PM

147. class size doesn't matter, bill gates funded studies that prove it. however, like you, he sends

 

his children to private schools with an average class size of 15.

apparently small classes have a different impact on elite children than they do on prole children.

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Response to HiPointDem (Reply #147)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 06:17 PM

150. Apparently so. n/t

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 12:14 AM

16. I went to a private high school

A Catholic one, to be exact. I did janitorial work from the time I was 11, to pay for my tuition.

The thing to remember is that not all private schools are what they're made out to be on TV.

We didn't get as much federal money as public schools, so our school was hardly ritzy or elite. We had an old building, very few functioning pencil sharpeners, no air conditioning, and an ancient heating system that often broke down in the winter (I recall many days that we struggled to do our schoolwork while wearing thick winter gloves).

It was a running joke in our city, that our teachers got the lowest salaries. Yet those teachers were the most dedicated I've ever known, and I got a great education as a result.

I went back there 30 years later, and it was like coming home to family. Many of the same teachers were still there. Some of my classmates' siblings hold faculty positions there, including principal. They all remembered me, the moment I said my name. The current students were as polite and respectful as my peers and I had been, because there was mutual respect between us and the teachers. These teachers could have taught elsewhere for more money...but they didn't.

Two or three years ago, when the school was facing financial hardship, the teachers willingly agreed to a pay freeze--a shock to me, given their low salaries!--because they wanted to keep the school going for their students' sake. They taught me by example that people matter more than profits...something every Republican would do well to learn.

Meanwhile, the public schools in that same city were hellholes--the poor schools were gang-infested, the ones in rich neighborhoods were dominated by cruel bullies and lazy, uncaring teachers who let the bullying go on.

In short, it all depends on the private school you go to. There's a big difference between snobby private schools, and the private schools where teachers and students work together.

I'm sure there are public schools like that, too. But none of them were in my area, unfortunately. So I was happy to be able to attend school without having to worry about being beaten up.

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Response to lbrtbell (Reply #16)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:06 AM

34. "There's a big difference between snobby private schools...

...and the private schools where teachers and students work together."

You got that right! My daughters went K-12 to a private school where the total census was about 140 kids. Any bullying was pretty strictly dealt with, and there wasn't any more snobbishness than is usual in life (probably less).

It was really kind of a quasi-family experience for our girls. We don't regret the expense, and we seriously worked our butts off to make it happen.

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Response to lbrtbell (Reply #16)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 12:14 PM

134. Sounds like a wonderful school! nt

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 12:39 AM

21. Both my daughters went to private school K-12...

and then on to university. The older one is now an eye surgeon, and the younger one is a CPA/Auditor for one of the big 5 accounting firms. It cost us an arm and a leg by the time they were through with their 4-year degrees (we promised both we would pay for their first four years of college as long as they really applied themselves). It actually only cost us tuition at one of the UC campuses for the older one; the younger one got a full tuition scholarship for her college, so we paid for her room and board plus a stipend. The oldest had to do the student loan thing for her medical school.

There wasn't anything wrong with the public schools in our area; but they had very large student populations, and we wanted a K-12 experience for them that allowed for smaller class sizes. We were extremely fortunate to be able to afford it, and we don't regret the expense.

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Response to Adsos Letter (Reply #21)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:03 AM

31. Smaller class size is what motivated us to put our kids in private school too.

That and the school they'd attend in our neighborhood has a very bad ratings.

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Response to abelenkpe (Reply #31)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:17 AM

39. We are extremely appreciative of the whole experience our girls got at a small school.

They excelled academically, but just as importantly they were in an environment where equal attention was paid to helping them develop into well adjusted young people. There was a lot of attention paid to cooperation and, because it was part of the educational system of a religious denomination we admire, lots of attention paid to treating others as one would be treated.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 12:44 AM

24. The community of children is more important than one child

Perhaps if people quit putting THEIR children above ALL children, this would be a more egalitarian society.

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Response to FrodosPet (Reply #24)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:09 AM

36. that's easy to say if you don't have a child crying themselves to sleep at night

thinking they are stupid.

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Response to FrodosPet (Reply #24)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 02:06 AM

63. You ever get your ass kicked for being a racial minority?

Would you be okay with your kids getting their asses kicked for being racial minorities?

You put Jesus himself down in a rough public school and He might be able to bring up the tone of the classroom, but you put your kids there, and they're just going to come down to the level of the classroom.

I still feel SO ANGRY sometimes, and it's something I learned when I was 10 and 11.

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Response to XemaSab (Reply #63)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 05:31 AM

73. Yes, I got my ass kicked for being a pacifist white nerd in 6th Grade

The guy who did it later became one of my best friends.

Other times, it was white guys who kicked it just for being a pacifist nerd, irrespective of my race.

I'm not a genius, but I don't think I was brought down by growing up in urban public schools. I was brought up to appreciate a diversity of people.

I may have had higher academics had I went to private school. I may have went to college instead of going in the Navy. Perhaps I would have ended up in a 6 figure job, whatever. But I went to public school, where I learned I am no better than anyone else.

That may be the single most important lesson one can learn.

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Response to FrodosPet (Reply #73)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 05:37 AM

74. Good for you for learning something beneficial

I learned that black people can be just as racist as white people.

I'd prefer to have remained ignorant of that fact.

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Response to XemaSab (Reply #63)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 07:40 AM

89. i feel so angry now, & i learned it from watching privileged people destroy the country.

 

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Response to FrodosPet (Reply #24)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 06:38 PM

155. Unclear...

I don't recall reading a post where some people put their children above all children. Are you talking about an article?

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Response to onpatrol98 (Reply #155)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 08:07 PM

162. The premise of the OP is would you buy your child's way out of public school

Coming from a progressive perspective, to say "I am going to put my child's education ahead of education for all children" seems selfish.

Wanting the best for one's child is a natural reaction. But as it has been said time and again, "The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few...or of the one". Government funding is based on school enrollment and attendance. To have a school age child NOT in a desperate public school makes the school even more desperate.

If parents want the best education for their kids, engage the child. Sit down and help them work through their homework. Go to the conferences and school board meetings, call their teachers. But please don't be an elitist and pull your child away from the "undesirables".

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Response to FrodosPet (Reply #162)

Tue Dec 11, 2012, 01:00 PM

188. My Child's Education

But, no one put their child's education ahead of education for all children, no more than choosing to buy clothes from one store instead of another store is choosing to put your own clothing needs ahead of the clothing needs for everyone. Every parent has to decide on how to education his/her children. Some people choose public school, some people choose private school, some choose homeschooling...and a few have tried all three.

People also choose educational venues for a variety of reasons. Some parents of special needs children opt for homeschooling or private schools, or even certain public schools over others, because they are personally responsible for providing for their children...and they perceive an opportunity to help their children.

Following your logic, a parent of a special needs child should instinctively realize that they have a duty to leave their child in an environment that may NOT be in his/her best interest so as not to deprive the school of necessary dollars. To my mind, this is not a good parent. In fact, I'm not even sure if that describes a parent. It seems illogical at best.

I have no doubt that many of the parents that decide to move (if possible) for better schools, choose a private school, or actively choose one public school over another public school, and definitely homeschool are also parents who actively engage with their children, sit down and help them with their homework, go to conferences and school meetings.

I do not believe it is elitist to decide your child would fare better in one environment over another one... then seek it out. It's called being a parent...not even a good parent. It's just parenting. If we can decide we like one neighborhood better than another, one sweater is better than another, I think we can decide one school is better than another for our children. I have a friend who decided to let her child live with his father after his school attempted to place him in special education. It was a hard decision for her.

The father lived in another state, and it was also a public school. The school he moved to determined that he was dyslexic. And, they had a special program in place to help him discover ways to work with his learning issues. The kid graduated Valedictorian at that much larger, much more competitive campus.

She definitely was not elitist...but, she was desperate. She knew he needed more than she knew how to give, although she later learned, with the help of the new school on her visits. The school her child left, hasn't changed much, except it's gotten worse. But, her child's opportunities have certainly changed. He's finished graduate school. Some children do well no matter where they're placed. Some children seem to flourish better in some environment more so than others. Every child is different. Her older children did perfectly well in the same school, this child had to leave.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 12:45 AM

25. I moved my two sons from an excellent public school district

in Kansas, the Shawnee Mission School District, to an even better private school, the Barstow School in Kansas City, MO.

The issue initially was bullying. We did not know at the time that the oldest son had Asperger's Syndrome. All we knew was that he had no friends, his being smart was looked down upon, and he was being bullied. A friend whose son was a year older than mine, who'd attended the same elementary school, called me up in October, when my son was in 6th grade, her son in 7th. That school district does a 7-8 middle school, which is a very bad way to do it, in my opinion. The 8th graders pick on the 7th graders who when they become 8th graders pick on the 7th graders. Her son had had similar social problems as my son at the elementary school, even though her son is not autistic. She told me that I could not under any circumstances consider sending my son the the middle school. It got so bad for them that they moved their son to a different middle school in the same district.

What we got were class sizes half of what they were in the public school. My kid was no longer being bullied. The kids at the private school valued academics and now my son had friends. He did knowledge bowl and science bowl, and was instrumental in his team going to National Science Bowl when he was in 11th and 12th grades.

That very first year he was in Barstow, the private school, we then got a wake-up call about the younger son, now in 3rd grade. When we went to the parent-teacher conference when the first report cards came out, we heard the teacher describe a child we did not recognize. Worse yet, he was becoming the class clown. I don't want a class clown disrupting the class, and I sure as heck didn't want my son being the one doing that. So we moved him over to the private school second semester.

I would have cleaned houses or worked at McDonald's to afford to send my boys there. The concentration on academics was wonderful. They were learning new things the day before the last day of school. In the public school, kids don't seem to do anything but watch videos the last week or so of the school year. And this is in a good public school district.

I do support public schools totally. I do not believe I should have gotten a voucher, nor should I be exempt from any bit of taxes that support the public schools. The public schools should be funded so that they can have the small class sizes my kids had as well as have the full resources for all the special needs kids they must take in.

Here's another important thing to keep in mind about school funding: Even if you have 18 kids, there will come a time when your children will no longer be in school. Or you might have 2 kids or no kids. In any case, the time during which you have children in school is only a portion of your working life. We all need to understand that having good, well-funded public schools is in the very best interest of all of us.

When I first visited Barstow, before I'd fully committed to sending my kids there, I was very concerned that I'd experience an attitude of "We're better than anyone else." I did not experience that. Every parent I ever talked to was extremely grateful to be able to send their kids to this wonderful a school. Oh, it wasn't perfect. But no place run by mere mortals can possibly be.

I sent my kids to schools in four different states. Almost universally the teachers were truly dedicated to teaching kids. But what I saw among the teachers at the private school was that they were happy. They knew they had the support of administration as well as the parents. Some of them said things like they'd only planned to teach there until they could get a better-paying position in a public school district, but found they liked teaching there so much that they stayed.

And in a more direct answer to your question, would you buy your way out of bad public schools, my answer is Only an idiot would keep their kid in a bad public school if there were any alternative at all.

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Response to SheilaT (Reply #25)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 02:08 AM

64. +1

n/t

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 12:58 AM

28. We send our two kids to a private Montessori elementary school

It is very integrated. We can only barely afford it and would rather send them to a good school than say, buy a home or go on vacations. The public school in our neighborhood is really bad though. If we lived in a better school district public school would probably be ok.

We're in Los Angeles.

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Response to abelenkpe (Reply #28)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 02:10 AM

66. A neighbor, the wife of a real estate agent, once asked me why I was sending

my son to a private school, since our schools are supposed to be so good.

I said that this was the best choice for him, and I'd rather do that than spend the money on vacations or a kitchen remodel. Her jaw actually dropped -- what I said was so shocking.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:04 AM

32. Did it with a son and daughter.

The schools weren't especially bad but they went to Catholic schools from kindergarten through high school. I was raised as a Catholic. As I got older I started questioning Catholic ideology. I couldn't teach my kids about a religion I was seriously rejecting so I let the sisters and lay teachers provide them with an understanding of at least one religion. I knew they were both smart enough to eventually make their own decisions but I wanted them to know about Catholicism. They are both in their 40s now and have chosen their own paths as I knew they would.

My property taxes went to help pay for public schools throughout those years and still do.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:04 AM

33. Why would I keep my kid in a bad public school if there was any alternative, public or private?

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:19 AM

41. In a heart beat...

I probably would send my mythical children to one of the several great Catholic High Schools in the area even if it means going to church on Sundays.

On edit, I would still vote for the School Levy's because Public Schools are a necessity.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:23 AM

42. I currently send my 7 year old to private school because of bad public schools.



I like to think that the public schools benefit from not being burdened by teaching my son while still using my property taxes.

Some day we might move to a better school district.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:25 AM

44. My mom sure as shit did

And I am VERY thankful for it.

The public schools get your tax dollars no matter what, but you've got to look out for #1, and putting your kids through hell just to be PC isn't ok.

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Response to XemaSab (Reply #44)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:31 AM

47. +1

I will not force my child to come home crying everyday and asking to skip because he feels stupid just to be politically correct.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:35 AM

49. Yes

The private schools here are religious so I would have to make sure they don't indoctrinate them, but if I thought they would get a better education, I would send them there.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:45 AM

54. Neither. My wife is a public school teacher. We home school our child. nt

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:47 AM

55. You can support your public schools while still refusing to sacrifice your child's life

to them, if they're bad or even if they're just not right for your child.

Each of my children went to a combination of public and independent schools, depending on what they needed at the time. But I always worked hard for and contributed financially to public school levy campaigns.

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #55)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 11:17 AM

118. exactly

I have always voted for tax levies, but I will not sacrifice my child. I don't think local tax levies are enough to fill the gap anymore. They were never enough to fill the gap in poor communities and they're not even enough to fill the gap in rich communities anymore. We need more federal funding.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:57 AM

59. We had to buy our way out of daily bullying.

Our son was getting hit and otherwise bullied at least once a week with little help from administration. San Francisco has school choice but our options were schools that were actually worse. So, we bailed.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 02:23 AM

72. Public schools have some serious problems you can't ignore

Public schools are fine for most kids. But if you have a learning disability or ADD or other problems, it's very difficult. The curriculum and pace of instruction is too generalized to the average student with large class sizes. They tend to herd the kids through like cattle. If a kid falls behind for whatever reason, he's screwed and gets lost in the system. Most of those kids end up dropping out.

But one advantage of homeschooling...it ends bullying. Every school today has bullies and the vast majority of the time the schools do absolutely nothing about it. It's every kid for him or herself. And the victim is brought up to not fight back.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 06:09 AM

78. There's a reason people with money buy the best education possible.

 

It's not necessarily that the high end schools teach you better, it's the connections and influence that matter.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 06:33 AM

79. I really hope most of you are around

to see the destruction your greed is causing to this country. I hope you see what your kids have to deal with as well. So many of you sound like republicans it is disgusting.

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Response to RandiFan1290 (Reply #79)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 10:26 AM

96. So your argument is....what exactly?

We should go ahead and do something we know is bad for our kids because.........?

Wanting to get your own kid out of a bad public school system does not mean wanting to get rid of the public school system, or not wanting to improve the public school system.

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Response to RandiFan1290 (Reply #79)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 10:38 AM

100. what is disgusting is the expectation to allow our children to be abused by the system

simply to defeat the republicans. If you want to defeat the republicans then come up with a solution to the problem. Until then we parents will look out for and protect our children. That is what parents do.

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Response to liberal_at_heart (Reply #100)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 11:48 PM

178. The democrats' education policy is exactly the same as the republicans'. The ruling class is

 

united in its desire to privatize public schooling and they have already made great inroads. Obama has accelerated Bush's policies.

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Response to RandiFan1290 (Reply #79)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 12:45 PM

138. Point out which poster suggested vouchers or de-funding schools

Who here has done that? You (and a couple of others) level a curse and a slur at all of us who made a sacrifice to save our own kids when we can't save the world.

Imagine you have a child. Other children in the country are ill-clothed and ill-shod. What point would you prove by sending your own child to school in shoes with holes in them and clothes that are ragged? Imagine that buying decent clothing for your kid involves some sacrifice on your part, and you have to prioritize and juggle the budget. Would you do that? or would you say: Too bad about being cold in the winter, kid.

How would you be demonstrating Democratic or Progressive values by doing that?

You have no idea the genuine sacrifices some of us made and are making in our choices. And yet we all still vote not with our wallets but with our principles in the hope that the public system will improve, because we know it cannot improve but will worsen without funds.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 06:46 AM

80. I have it for my grandchildren, and my fear is not the academics but is the propensity for bullying

and violence. As an ex educator, this is one of the biggest barriers to student achievement. Many rules and legislative laws have been passed, but some parents always seem to skirt the consequences for their children. Teachers are often blamed for disruptive students, and it becomes a factor in their annual evaluation. However, attempts to deal with class room disruptors also result in accusations of teachers being abusive and in some cases criminal charges. Many public school teachers are well prepared to disseminate information and create inform and share situations, but the classroom disruptions dominate the day. It is also the reason that we are experiencing fewer college students entering the schools of education as career choices. Those who do attempt to become teachers are leaving teaching jobs as fast as they are hired. When questioned, discipline is one of the number one reasons.

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Response to mfcorey1 (Reply #80)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 06:43 PM

157. Bullying

Public schools have it bad, but private schools can be even worse, especially if it is full of the would be Mitt Romney "darlings" that know their Mom and dad can get teachers fired.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 06:51 AM

81. My father worked overtime to send my brother and myself to private school. He didn't "buy his way

out" his taxes paid for public school for those who go to them. I would do the same if I had kids, a good education is important and I would sacrific to give it to them.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 07:22 AM

85. Private schools are not always what you think they are.

A friend of mine started both her boys out in private school and is now looking at public school because public schools here are better able to provide programs for gifted students. Although when I hear people talk about the schools around here I wonder if a lot of the problem with public education is more a case of the curriculum being dumbed down as opposed to teaching to the abilities of the children.

My friend's son is now in first grade and most kids at his school are held back to repeat Kindergarten, not because of academics but because of sports. Parents want their children to be bigger in try to gains some advantage in sports. At what point do you loose that advantage because other parents are doing the same thing? Anyway, her son is usually bored because there is no challenge to the work. His teacher actually went out and got him a 3rd grade math book in order to give him some challenging work. A bored child can develop bad habits like talking in class, ignoring the teacher, and so on. By the time the child reaches a grade level where he/she actually needs to pay attention, that attention is long gone.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 07:25 AM

86. Sent my son to a private high school

Before that we home-schooled him.

He's now in college.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 07:30 AM

87. No. I'd find a way of starting an innovative and free afterschool program that

tutored and augmented the public school classes in order to give the kids a better chance.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 07:37 AM

88. You are buying into their propaganda

That's the whole point - to make public education so bad that people won't want to use it, and then to offer vouchers toward private schools.

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Response to gollygee (Reply #88)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 08:22 AM

92. and it's deliberate. deliberate destruction.

 

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Response to gollygee (Reply #88)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 08:28 AM

93. Yes.

"That's the whole point - to make public education so bad that people won't want to use it, and then to offer vouchers toward private schools."

It's very deliberate.

Could Federal Educational Vouchers Aimed at the Poor and Useable in Public Schools Work?
http://www.democraticunderground.com/1002312347

Jindal voucher overhaul unconstitutionally diverts public funds to private schools, judge rules
http://www.democraticunderground.com/1014322479

Look at all the love for private schools and the negativity toward public schools. Then people wonder why the RW gets to target public school, under funding them in efforts to push privatization.

This also plays directly into the attitude toward teachers and unions. I wonder how many people here support Jindal's plan?



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Response to gollygee (Reply #88)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 10:31 AM

98. Sending your kid to private school to avoid bad public schools does not mean wanting the destruction

of public school.

Fact is we've massively underfunded our public schools for 3 decades now. We need to fix that. Unfortunately, the Rhees and Duncans of the world are insisting that testing can somehow fix lack of funding, and Democrats put them in charge.

My kid isn't in school yet, but the way this affects me is I'm planning to move before she starts school. The schools here are awful. I can't fix that by sending her to those schools. But that doesn't mean I don't want the schools here to get better.

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Response to jeff47 (Reply #98)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 12:09 PM

132. zRIght. Thanks

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Response to gollygee (Reply #88)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 10:34 AM

99. the republicans don't have to make so bad we don't want to use it.

It is already so bad we don't want to use it. If you want us to use it then the democratic politicians need to fix it. I will not sacrifice my child's education or self esteem so that we can beat the republicans simply by doing nothing. You want to beat the republicans on this issue then the democrats need to come up with a better solution. That is how we will beat them on this issue.

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Response to liberal_at_heart (Reply #99)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 11:28 AM

121. They've already done it

I don't mean you shouldn't do what you need to do for your children, only that the OP has bought into the propaganda.

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Response to gollygee (Reply #121)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 11:33 AM

123. yes it has already been done for decades now

People will come back to the public school system when politicians are willing to fund it. That obviously won't happen until we start voting out the politicians who don't fund it and vote in politicians who do fund it. But right now there is no one willing to fund it. We have to get angry enough at both parties to force a change. We have to demand change from our own party, and we do that with our voice and our vote. I know I plan on using it. Education is now my top voting priority. But I sure as hell don't blame anyone who puts their kids in private school right now. Parents will always do what is in the best interest of their child. They should be commended for that, not looked down on.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 08:00 AM

90. if the schools were truly bad

and I could afford to do so--then yes. No one wants to send their children to a bad school if they can help it

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 08:20 AM

91. I would

quit electing politicians who deform public education, and start electing people who will support public education.

Public schools aren't "bad." They do the best they can with the resources they are given. Not good enough? Do a better job of supporting them.

I am a product of public education. So are my two sons. My grandson is currently in a public middle school.

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Response to LWolf (Reply #91)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 11:16 AM

117. +1

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Response to LWolf (Reply #91)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:35 PM

141. There is currently no one attempting to actually solve the problem.

Do a better job of supporting them.

How do you imagine we could do that fast enough to save our child's education?

If I vote for a Republican, I get vouchers. If I vote for a Democrat, I get Arnie Duncan. Neither will actually fix the problem. Simply demanding that Democrats fix the problem is how morons like Duncan got put in charge of education.

It took about 30 years to put the public school system into it's current state. It is going to take a long time to repair that. Longer than a kid is in school.

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Response to jeff47 (Reply #141)

Tue Dec 11, 2012, 08:41 AM

185. Start by

refusing to support neoliberals. Nominate, and vote for, left-of-center candidates.

In the '08 primaries, Obama was last on my list of possible nominees. Why? Because I listened to him talk about education. I paid attention.

Next, get involved in local school board elections. Run yourself, if you can. If not, do your best to help elect some educators, and public-education friendly board members.

Spend time at your kids' schools. Get a position on the school site council. Volunteer. Spend enough time to see what is going on, what is needed, and get involved in local solutions while the political wheels turn.

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Response to LWolf (Reply #185)

Tue Dec 11, 2012, 09:19 AM

186. And 20 years later, things will be better

But kids are only in school for 13 years.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 08:59 AM

94. I am.

My local public school is a shithole.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 09:23 AM

95. Yes. nt

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 10:46 AM

101. My family has a history of living in towns with excellent school systems.

Not the richest town but rarely the poorest town and always a town that has the highest taxes in the area. Good schools = high taxes at least around here.

I live in a small working/middle class town but our taxes are higher than the towns on our boarder because the schools are better.

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Response to Walk away (Reply #101)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 10:49 AM

104. yes small towns with good tax revenue seem to be a good way to go

I tried living in a big town with lots of local tax revenue but the results were not good. We are now headed to a smaller town. I don't know how much they pay in taxes. I still have to look into that. I am also hoping for smaller classrooms.

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Response to liberal_at_heart (Reply #104)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 02:47 PM

146. Good luck! We are lucky to have a well run town and the taxes we pay give us...

a lot of bang for our buck. Plus, we all take part in town projects and fund raising. If everyone is into it that really helps.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 10:46 AM

102. First define 'bad' school...a school that might not be the correct...

fit for one student is a challenge another student takes on eagerly and succeeds with.
Student, teacher, parents, administration, support staff, community....when it all works together
we find a 24 year old Latina woman become the youngest city council member in the
city's history...


Tikki

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 10:50 AM

105. Funding education is the only way you buy your way out of bad public schools!

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Response to Coyotl (Reply #105)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 11:13 AM

115. My state is actually in violation of its own state constitution

to fully fund public schools. It's time to start primaring democrats who don't have a platform for fixing the public school system.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 10:52 AM

107. I'm lucky, the public schools in my neighborhood are great.

But if they were terrible, in all honesty I would try to figure out how to afford private schools.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 10:53 AM

108. Most loving parents do whatever it takes to protect their kids

You can't fault them for that.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 11:09 AM

114. my son keeps asking if there is a special education science class he can take

He loves science but cannot keep up with the general education science classes. I have to keep telling him sorry son but there is no special education science class.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 11:19 AM

119. My parents are both public school teachers

and if they'd had the money they would have sent me to private school.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 11:24 AM

120. If you live in an upper class area you can find excellent schools. If you don't your out of luck.

 

How sad education isn't equal any longer. I don't think children education should depend on the parents financial situation. I would do all I could for my child and his/her education. I don't know any parent who wouldn't do whatever it would take to afford the best for their childrens education. Being real though many don't have that choice. I have a granddaughter and am always praying she'll get a good education. I know however their parents don't have college educations and I can't see her getting it. My husband and I constantly telling her she has to go to college and she has to learn to depend on herself and the only way that is going to happen is have a good payng job and not depend on anyone but herself. She is only 6 yrs old. I pray it works because I don't think I'll be around when she graduates from high school.

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Response to southernyankeebelle (Reply #120)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 11:29 AM

122. you've planted a seed

Hopefully it will grow. Children can still succeed in school. It is usually not because of the school system. It is usually in spite of them. You really have to be willing to do twice the work that you would do if you had a good school. But it can be done.

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Response to liberal_at_heart (Reply #122)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 01:04 PM

139. Oh I pray your right. You know I wonder at least for myself I have a family of 6 brothers and

 

sisters. The first 4 were born in the late 48s and early 50s. We grew up when a girl was suppose to grow up like little Betty Crockers and be good little wives and get married and be homemakers. Remember those times? In the same family we had 2 kids born in 1960 and 64. They were late babies. My dad never encouraged us girls to go to college. Now in the mean time my little sister reached the age of 11 and my brother was 5 and our dad died. I was 22 yr old. Our mother never worked and we kids never wanted her to work. Lucky with my dad's pension from the military and social security she did ok. My older siblings and I stayed home and went to work. Our oldest brother was married and had a child of his own. Well the point was my sisters and I encouraged our youngest sister to go forward and go to college. She was extremely smart. Getting education in local schools. When dad died we moved closer to a military base and a nice area. We bought a home and the younger two thrived. My sister ended up going to college and she is a dentist today. I really think had my dad not died I wonder if she would have gone on to college. But I do think the area you live in also determines what the education is going to be. Then again I wonder ssome of us are average and a couple went on to college. It makes you wonder what if?.......

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 11:37 AM

125. Well, when my children were young, I was a single parent who could not afford private

schools. That said, I did choose to rent where the schools had a good reputation, even though it meant paying higher rent and a longer commute to work. That was still less than the cost of private education.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 11:51 AM

128. As long as the private school was not a religious school.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 11:58 AM

130. politicians are forcing that issue on us by intentionally breaking public schools

by micromanaging curriculum, requiring repetitive standardized tests (no teacher would object to once or twice a year to measure individual students' progress), and budget cuts that swell class size and make teaching anything far more difficult.

Ironically, even the best teacher would have a hard time doing a good job if they did it exactly as proscribed by bought off politicians.

The budget and understaffing has safety consequences as well.

We may send our kids to private school for the last reason alone, but I don't want vouchers or tax cuts, or anything of the sort if I do: I want politicians to stop treating education as a luau pig they are carving up for their hungry Wall Street donors.

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Response to yurbud (Reply #130)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 12:02 PM

131. +1. I like your post

well said.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 12:19 PM

135. I did it by moving to a community with a greater appreciation for the value of an education.

At great financial expense to me.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 12:19 PM

136. My oldest two went to public schools. My youngest goes to a private school.

That was a tough call to make, since my wife is a public schoolteacher and I tought at public colleges for many years. Neither of us are against public schooling in the slightest. Unfortunately our local school district (which isn't the one my wife is employed at) has taken a serious slide in quality over the past handful of years, and it's not just a budget issue. The leadership in the school itself has dropped the ball in a number of ways, lowering the quality of both the school experience and the education. Parent groups are no longer given any role, anti-bullying efforts have been abandoned, etc. Our local elementary school isn't a good place to be. My wife, who has worked in elementary schools for over a decade, has been blown away by how BAD this local district has become.

So, he went into private school. He's grades have gone up, he's happier, and we don't have to deal with constant BS from his principal (my kid never got into any sort of trouble, but the guy is really, really bad). We have no regrets.

The idea of standing by your public school "no matter what" is a bit dumb. As parents, our number ONE job is to protect our children. If the local schools aren't providing the best learning environment for them, then it's our job to find a better place for them to spend their days. To put your childs best interests BEHIND political or economic interests seems a bit insane to me.

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Response to Xithras (Reply #136)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 12:28 PM

137. I agree and thank you for bringing up the fact that it is not just a budget issue

There are major problems that need to be addressed with the public school system and the lack of funding is only one of the problems.

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Response to Xithras (Reply #136)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 04:10 PM

148. yes, one's first obligation is to one's child. but if it ends there, you accelerate the general

 

destruction.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 02:29 PM

143. I think there should be no such option, for rich or poor. We all should be in the same boat.

You folks can spend your energy lifting up the commons.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 02:33 PM

144. Yes, I surely would. I know a couple of VERY liberal, progressive Democrats who sent their children

 

...to a Lutheran private school in Virginia because they public schools in the area, where they had temporarily relocated for a job, were so bad.

Not just academically bad, but dangerous.

ETA The parents are both atheists.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 02:43 PM

145. Sectarian schools are NOT an option!

With that said, I was raised in a small town with a subpar school system. Half of the teachers in my elementary school were busybodies who made trouble for certain people.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 06:25 PM

151. We did with our 1st child and we are with our 2nd child - Catholic school - Right down the block.

I figure I am paying for BOTH. My real estate taxes and my personal property taxes(potions of which) go towards public schools. We pay close to the SAME amount in these taxes YEARLY that we pay for the Catholic School tuition.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 06:36 PM

154. We spent a bundle on private preschool and are using public elementary

for our two now. I'd like to not have to pay outrageous tuition again until college, but we are in a major city with charters so there are some options. Fingers-crossed that our district remains as great as it has been, but that's probably asking a lot here in Texas.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 07:44 PM

158. Thanks to Christie most of the public schools in the state lost their state aid

Naturally, this is going to have a detrimental effect on the quality of public schools. If I have the option to avoid putting my kids in that mess I will.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 08:06 PM

161. That's exactly what I did

Keep in mind that my kid is now 44, married, and a new father ...

In 8th grade, there were a number of factors that fueled my decision, and my ex-husband's.

Tim was 13, and at that "fuck you" stage. His grades were going down. The public school he went to had Friday movies with popcorn in the auditorium. Time, I believed, better spent in the classroom. Then we went to a parent/teacher conference ... his English teacher, when questioned about his progress, said "he be doing fine."

We yanked him out and sent him to Catholic school. I'm a non-beliveing, non practicing Catholic, but we got the "Catholic" rate. Best decision ever.

Sorry, when it's my child and his future at stake, I will do whatever I can to ensure the best outcome for him.

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Response to lillypaddle (Reply #161)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 09:15 PM

167. glad to see parents doing what's best for their children

and not being afraid to say it on this board. It's obviously not a very politically correct thing to say. I am hopeful that someday we will get our public schools back but until then our children deserve better.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 08:19 PM

163. Absolutely, without hesitation.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 08:24 PM

164. Yes, but only if moving to a better school district

wasn't an option.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 08:49 PM

165. or home schooling-- I did all three....

Montessori schools for as long as they were available, then home schooling, and I've ALWAYS supported public schools (and teach at a public university). But when all the willingness in the world to support public schools won't change the minds of troglodyte school officials and politicians bent upon gutting the revenue necessary to pay for better schools, I took matters into my own hands. My daughter was much better for it.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 09:57 PM

169. I did it for my son when we lived in TN & AL. No way was he going to the horrible local

schools. We had one good teacher there, and then downhill. We moved to VA and still had problems, back into private school until high school. He then did fine in the public high school, which served the richer suburbs. I feel that if we hadn't put him in private school for most of his early years (plus the year I homeschooled him), he never would have graduated.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 10:20 PM

171. This is what dh and I did:

We sold our house in one part of town and bought a fixer upper in another part of town. We were very fortunate to be able to do that. We left the big school district and landed in a much smaller district in the same city.

The big district was expecting 32 kids in my oldest child's Kindergarten class that fall. They had a part time librarian, part time PE teacher, no art teacher and no foreign language teacher (Spanish was taught via video).

The little district had 11 kids for Kindergarten (including my eldest), a full-time librarian, art teacher, PE teacher, Spanish teacher and counselor.

Oldest is now a freshman in high school, taking Advanced Calculus with honors. He is getting straight A/A+'s and is taking honors credits for all of his non-elective courses. Youngest child is an 8th grader and attends the high school for math as well, again, straight A/A+. They both want to be engineers. The high school is a college prep school, so the kids are there by choice, not just because it's a neighborhood school.

The state provides ~ $6k/kid. Our district spends ~$16.5k/kid. The difference between the two is raised by the school's private foundation. We don't keep most of our in-district tax $ because our state has an equalization formula for education (which I'm fine with and that's also why there is a foundation).

So while we didn't go private, we might as well have done so - it's probably close to a wash between the increase in the mortgage (plus a slightly longer mortgage) and what would've been two private school tuition bills.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 11:25 PM

176. I know people at work that used to do that. The work location and where the housing was had really

bad schools. I would have done the same. Some of them also ran for city positions, so they were trying to contribute, but they felt their child's education was a #1 priority.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 11:33 PM

177. Yes, of course.

IF I had the means, I would have done so.

Actually, we tried it for a couple years even when we realy didn't have the money.

We moved across the country to get my son in a private school for autism, since the public school he went to in Tennesse had barely heard of autism in the mid-90's. He got accepted, we packed up and moved, got him in, and after two years it was pretty clear that the school wasn't going to help him--he was too severely autistic, and we didn't get him into an intensive ABA program early enough.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Tue Dec 11, 2012, 12:33 AM

179. HELL YES

 

I suffered through a crap public school. I would never subject my child to that.

In fact, one of the reasons I deferred having children was that I was unwilling to raise one unless I could ensure myself that his/her education would be a decent one. In the end, we chose not to have kids.

I don't blame teachers. There are good and bad teachers but the system as a whole is a nightmare. Yes, I would like a good public school system but I would never risk my child on that system these days.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Tue Dec 11, 2012, 04:15 AM

182. yes my kids education comes first.

 

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Tue Dec 11, 2012, 04:18 AM

183. I'm surprised you haven't been PPR'ed yet. "Bad public schools"?? One hardly

 

knows where to start.

Oh, fuck it, I'm just going to put you on Ignore and be done with it.

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Response to BrentWil (Original post)

Tue Dec 11, 2012, 06:58 AM

184. My daughter goes to a wonderful secular private school.

She gets a full scholarship otherwise we could never have afforded the tuition. Our local schools are very good but hers is in another league altogether. It is much more demanding and challenging and the classes are taught on a college level.

While I had mixed feelings about sending her to a school with the privileged classes, we did not think we could deny her the opportunity to have the best education available.

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