JUST A THOUGHT: The other day, I was sitting in the middle of my Poli Sci class when the fire alarm sounded. It was a large auditorium of about 400 seats and the alarm was loud and resounding. The professor, though he immediately halted his lecture, instructed everyone to remain in their seats as he believed it was a false alarm. After about 2 minutes, just as people had started to pack their things, the alarm stopped, but only for a few seconds, after which it continued. After a minute, about a dozen people rose to leave and nearly got to the door when the alarm went off for good and the class continued. As I sat there, I couldn't help but think that the behavior of the class was not irregular, but that most people would probably react in a similar manner given the particular situation.... which makes fire alarms UTTERLY USELESS!!! The whole point of the fire alarm is to warn you to get out before you are barbequed, but human nature requires that we see smoke and flames first. A suggestion if I may: Don't wait 'til the fire starts to jump out of the frying pan.
The Real Deal
The Virginia based Human Resources Research Organization conducted a study released to the public today that nearly 100,000 (or 20 Percent) of public High School Seniors in California (Class of ’06) did not pass the High School Exit Exam now required by law for graduation. This number becomes even more horrific when considering that the exam is testing the kids at an 8th grade Math level, and a 9th/10th grade English Level. This information says frankly that 1 out of 5 seniors cannot do basic algebra, nor read at a 10th grade level. This, however, is not the focus of what I want to discuss. Among the findings of the study are that 37 Percent of Black students failed, 32 Percent of Latino students failed, 11 Percent of Asian students and 10 Percent of White Students failed. Because of this, the TEST is racist. Many groups are attempting to get the test thrown out, claiming racism in the test. The high school protesters, carrying banners that read "Educate Don't Terminate" and "Don't Judge Students by One Test," denounced the exam as discriminatory. A single test is an unfair method to allow or deny graduation. I totally agree. Throw out the H.S. exit exam. Also, throw out Medical board exam, the FAA pilot’s license, and the BAR. Throw them all out. The fact is when you have standards, people fail them. And if you are poor and/or can’t speak English, you have to work that much hard to achieve those standards. I strongly believe that it is not the job of the school system to lower its standards to accommodate mediocrity, but the responsibility of the child and the parent to do what it takes to achieve success. I do not believe it to be unfair of the school system to ask any child to be able to do basic algebra and have a basic development of the English language before graduation. The point of High School, after all, is to prepare kids to become productive members of society. I believe we have to motivate kids to achieve, not to settle for mediocrity.
I couldn’t find a direct link to the study, but here is the L.A. Times story pageStumble It!