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Fri Dec 14, 2012, 05:50 AM

 

The Silent Treatment: A Day in the Life of a Student in ‘No Excuses’ Land [View all]

Meet Carolina. This college-bound fifth grader is fortunate enough to attend a charter school where expectations are high and innovation and excellence abound. There’s just one wee catch. In order to realize her goal of opportunity and the promise of independence, Carolina must spend the next SEVEN YEARS in near silence. Sweet Carolina is not a novice in a convent or an inmate in a children’s prison but a resident of a horrifying place called “no excuses” land that, while often lauded by education rephormers, is rarely seen from within. You see, Carolina is a would-be student at a proposed new school, Argosy Collegiate Charter School, in Fall River, Massachusetts. As part of its application to the state Board of Education, Argosy included a detailed hour-by-hour look at what Carolina’s typical school day is like (note: Day in the Life begins on page 144 of the application). The following is an excerpt from Carolina’s day.

7:10 am – Carolina, an Argosy Collegiate fifth grader is ready to board the school bus... Carolina’s mother, Mrs. Medeiros, an Argosy Collegiate Volunteer, supervises her daughter and the other four students who board the bus at this stop. Mrs. Medeiros asks each student if they are ready to learn today. Students respond with an enthusiastic, “Yes, I’m ready to learn today. I can’t wait to learn something new...!” Once the school bus arrives, Carolina and her peers board the bus one at a time and in silence, other than a greeting for...the bus driver, who responds with, “Good morning, Carolina. Are you Determined to learn today?”

7:27 am – Carolina arrives to Argosy Collegiate...Mr. Silvia, one of her math teachers...boards the...bus every day as part of his morning duties. Mr. Silvia...signals them non-verbally to stand and walk off the bus. Mr. Silvia continues this procedure, row by row, and the students maintain their silence...

7:30 am – The Executive Director, Ms. Pavao, opens the school doors, and warmly and individually greets every student by name.... “Good Morning, Carolina! Why are you here today?” “I am here to learn,” Carolina replies. “What will it take?” asks Ms. Pavao. “Determination, Responsibility, Excellence, Ambition, and Maturity,” replies Carolina...

It goes on reader. On and on and on and on. Dismissal is still hours away, meaning that Carolina has SLANT, many more timers, binders, 3-2-1′s, 1-2-3′s, DREAM points, exit tickets, “I do, you do, we do,” Q2, FOCUS and enrichment to go before at last boarding the bus for her silent ride home. But there is good news. Once fifth grade draws to its inevitable end, Carolina will have only 1295 days of silence to go before she gets to college…

http://edushyster.com/?p=1425

no joke: this is a transcript of the school officials' own explanation of what a typical day looks like.

edushyster.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/12/argosy.doc.docx

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