Archive for July 2009

“Dumbest Generation Getting Dumber”

July 23, 2009

Dr. Walter William’s article (the above title is his) reminds me of some of the reasons we have become involved in the education process. Our involvement started when our sons were in grade school. We were living in “Middletown USA” (for those of you old enough to remember where that is).

Middletown has a teachers college (from which I graduated), and at that time produced more teachers for our children than any college except Columbia.

While driving through the campus I caught a broadcast from the college radio station where a student was interviewing an assistant dean of the school of education. The college official being interviewed had input into what the student teachers were being taught about what they should teach your children. The schools at that time were pushing a math method called “new math”. They continue pushing this, however, they change the names of the classes. The student asked the college official what was wrong with the “old math”? The college official answered, “There are those of us in the education community who think there are needed social changes in the USA and the quickest way to bring about those changes is to lessen the influence of the parent over the child”.

Many of you may have taken “new math” classes or the same thing with a different name.

We run into people who have had to participate in these classes during their public school student careers. We meet these people as we interview students and parents for enrollment in our private school in Florida.

Why does Dr. Williams call this generation the, “Dumbest Generation”? I think it is not because the members of that generation are especially dumb. His article uses some test scores to determine that this generation is the dumbest. What has caused the test scores to be so low. Of course, the test results are determined by the questions asked and the students exposure to those subjects while in school. Could it be that the tests do not test what has been taught? We know that some of the tests have been “re-centered”, that means to add points to the student score to keep the scores higher. Another reason could be the mandatory subjects that are covered, but do not belong in the typical core course categories.

At a meeting in Florida with one of the testing companies the public school teachers were complaining about the ten subjects that they had to teach along with all the regular classes. The two courses that were mentioned most were “Anti-bullying” and “Aggressive Girls”, these are real money makers for the people who produce the course material. These courses do not come home with the student to complete, that is why public school students have more homework each day. Many parents and students we interview complain about the loss of time to do extra curricular activities or family activities due to new greater amounts of home work.

Dr. Walter E. Williams, who is on the faculty of George Mason University as a John M. Olin Distinguished Professor of Economics, an author, a columnist, and other activities. Dr. Williams article below was published on Townhall.com

Walter E. Williams : Dumbest Generation Getting Dumber – Townhall.com .

Get Into College or University Easier

July 8, 2009

Get into college or university easier. There is a big difference between when your parents had to do something to gain admission and what they had to do and how this applies to today’s student.

When I was graduating from high school in 1956 we started thinking about college in February of 1956 or later. Today by February of your senior year most colleges and universities have already accepted students and have granted admission, some scholarships and other forms of aid, and their incoming freshman class maybe full, you may only get into college after May when the early appliers who have been accepted by more than one college have to choose which school they are going to select to attend.

There wasn’t much  thought of scholarships in 1956, my memory maybe faulty but I remember college being relatively affordable. This was before the federal government’s involvement in higher education.

College prices have increased mostly from the federal government furnishing loans and the government’s involvement in currency depreciation. The cost of college has increased as government loans have increased in size. The same applies to housing prices. The Bureau of Labor Statistics has an inflation calculator that will show you the effects of currency devaluation (inflation). If your tuition is $4,000 in 2009 that equates to $508.75 in 1956 dollars for a year at college. As a multiplier for each $1000 of tuition costs in 2009 multiply $127.49 by the number of thousands to covert to 1956 prices.

There are many sources for information about getting into college or university at bargain basement rates, but most sources only cover one area, so you have to search all over for more information. We have an e-book about the secrets to college or university admission which cover the areas you need to cover and some free reports. The e-book was written for public school, private school, and home school students. We suggest that college and universiy planning starts as early as 4th grade. Get the book to see how to be worth at least $1,000,000 more after college.

Florida School Grades and Graduation Rates

July 7, 2009

Want to know how the public schools did on state tests. Here is a blog on that process. In the high schools the overall math scores improved while the the scores for reading, writing, and science were lower. You can get Florida school grade cards on FL public schools here.

Graduation rates are another interesting statistic, Education Week shows the Florida graduation rate is 57.5% in the year 2005-2006 with the national average being 69.2%. These figures might have been good 50 or 75 years ago. Even New York which many hold up as an example only does about 10% better. FL officials calculate this differentlyand do not appear to be very happy with Education Week figures.

Florida & Tampa Bay schools blog – The Gradebook.