Sunday, March 09, 2008

Low expectations

I read somewhere that kids of welfare mothers have limited vocabulary, less than 200 words. Kids of average families have about 500 words whereas kids of teachers and professors have about 2200 words. Unless we play an active role in our kid's education, their performance will languish. Working the past 2 weeks with 2 lovely kids have made me realize that unless parents are actively involved, there will be low expectations.
Don't expect teachers to do it for you. The bar in schools these days is set so very low that everyone (even idiots) will pass. This lead to a life of mediocrity. The kids, because of non involvement from parents, will pick easy courses, even easy Math, just to fulfill the requirements and get through High School. This is a travesty of enormous proportions. Low expectation in High School leads to a life of mediocrity. Kids will grow up to take jobs managing a Walmart, a Target , a Supermarket or a Chain Drugstore. We have lost a lot of high paying manufacturing jobs. Jobs in retail are plentiful, they don't pay enough in these jobs and the work is mind numbing. I hate to think if I could do something and not do it, I'll be condemning these 2 lovely girls to a life like that, stuck in a low paying and mind numbing jobs.
A little involvement from the parents will make a world of difference. This kid (one of the 2 girls) is failing in Math. I've offered to come over every weekend to tutor her. To all our surprises, she gets up early, we start promptly at 8am and work for hours on Math and other homework. She wants to learn. I told her to, next semester, take up all the available Math and Science courses and she agreed. Forget about the artsy fartsy courses, leave them to the others.
So I went on (online used book seller) and ordered a bunch of textbooks, Calculus, Trig, Geometry, Biology, Chemistry and Physics. Guess who needs to study? It's been only 40 years since I was in High School.

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