Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Had to talk about this statistic

Well I'm sure Dan Proft got this from either the newspapers or the schools themselves, but this has got to be an unfortunate statstic. Six out of  every 100 high school freshmen in the Chicago Public Schools, in a system that educates 400,000 students, will earn a bachelor's degree by the time they're 25. 60% of high school freshman or perhaps of high school students in CPS in general.

I know statistics can be played with and I'm sure these stats may not account for why it may take former CPS students some time before they graduate. I would say that some may go to school part-time and go to work. Some had to take some time off because college costs money. Then the basic assumption is that none of them are ready for college in the first place or they just don't take it very seriously and that's probably because (as I feel it was in my case) the schools may not have done an adequate job of preparing students for college.

Proft's point was to take a dig at Democratic leadership in Illinois. In his mind if achieving a baccalaureate degree is key to achieving some form of independence, especially from the Government, then this is probably not was the Democratic leadership in Illinois wants. They want to stay in power and that means gotta keep as many people ignorant and as dependent upon them as possible. Perhaps raising the bar in education really isn't in their best interests!

Well, I'll just say that I can tell you what's in anyone's hearts. All I can go by are people's statements. The commentary by Dan Proft is a conservative commentary that knocks the people who are already in power, especially if they themselves are of another political persausion. Who knows what he would say if they were all Republican but with the same results.

I hope that this stastic bothers you, it bothers me a lot! It's probably for a lot of reasons. It might be because I would like to know what they're measuring and why they're measuring it. The other reason could be that I'm concerned about what is being taught in our schools and how is it being taught. Are these kids getting it easy in high school that wouldn't be so easy when they hit college?

I want to hit on this point finally. I've seen a tendency to speak about public schools as if it's some kind of right that people have. I don't believe public education is a right, exactly. People who believe it is are missing out on an important point.

It's not that our children have a right to public education, but our children have the right to attain the best education possible. Who says that our children must go to public schools? Who says that public schools are the only ones to provide that ideal education?

The argument can certainly be understood if this was about say providing an education for those poor children whose families can't afford to send them to a private school. I would say though that while I'm sure there are those who want to dismantle the system, there are also those like myself who wouldn't be so quick to do that.

At the same time I want to ask the question. What can we do to really be sure that when we unleash our young people into the world that we will be certain that they will be ready?

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