For tonight’s blog, I think I will just do a short rant about my thoughts and feelings regarding the current day education system in American high schools. In a nutshell…I hate it. I personally believe that it has become way too lax, especially when compared to the education systems in other countries. It just seems like a joke to me, and I feel like it is not preparing students for college or life in the real world at all.
During my high school career, I attended three different schools, all of them known for being high achieving, schools of excellence. In every single one of them though, I never had a single night of homework; I never had to study for a test or quiz and always aced them; I never had to give any effort whatsoever. I was a straight A student all four years of high school. Then I got to CSU and had the biggest wake up call of my life. Within the first semester, I failed every single class. I didn’t understand anything we were learning and I had no idea how to keep up with the ridiculous amounts of homework I was constantly inundated with every week. Eventually, I had to drop out and go to community college. I even had to take courses that counted for absolutely zero credit just to catch up.It was so incredibly frustrating. I know a lot of college age students nowadays that are also having to play catch up once they graduate high school just like me. I definitely believe this is because our high schools are not doing their job in preparing us for college and providing us with the best education possible and I really believe something needs to be done about it.
I used to always think, “I’m going to be one of those really cool teachers who never, ever assigns homework and all the students like.” And now I realize what a mistake that would be. Now I realize how important it actually is to assign homework, to challenge your students, and make them work hard for their grades. Not only do they learn material better, but they also learn good study habits and important skills they will need later on in life.
In high school, I also had so many math teachers who would say, “I don’t care if your answer is right as long as I can see your work, and see that you tried.” Well because of this, every morning five minutes before class would start, all the students would just scribble down random numbers not even looking at the problems, and still they would receive full credit. We all had A’s in that class yet not one student could actually show you how to correctly solve a problem and arrive at the right answer. Had the teacher actually made us learn how to solve our problems correctly, I believe I would not have failed out of college math three times.
I know there are definitely still some great schools in our system that provide kids with the best education possible, but I feel like most of them do not, and I really feel like they need to step up. Homework should be made a priority. Correct answers should be made a priority. Really challenging students should be mad a priority. We as teachers should not accept laziness without punishment, and should not reward slacking off with good grades. These are such simple changes to make, and I feel like they’d end up making all the difference in the world. I’m not trying to say we should all just be hard asses and nazis in the classroom, but I do think we need to higher the expectations of our students and see to it that they’re meeting our standards.