Christine Greenhalge

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Christine Greenhalge
Posted 11 months ago
How are students educated in schools in YOUR country, where you came from?
In United States: 77 million students (grades K-12 & 2 & 4 year colleges. Almost 4million square miles. Almost 314 million people. Every student – of every gender, race, religion, income level, handicap – will be provided an education to grade 12. 314M people, so... no consensus on the best way to educate. Theories change regularly & ripple through systems, causing great financial & emotional angst as materials, texts & lesson plans have to be replaced. We have 50 states. Each sets its own rules. In Massachusetts, we have public, private, charter (create their own curriculum) and vocational (or trade) schools. Cities/towns must provide education for every student based on state mandated curriculum. If a city/town cannot (e.g. handicapped student) they must pay another community to educate the child. Funding is federal, state & local. In Massachusetts, local funding is based on property taxes. Wealthy communities have many times more $$ available than more poor cities/towns. State funding varies based on many factors, from immigrant needs to financial needs to building needs to student performance (standardized tests). Federal funding is tied to all sorts of restrictions, including need & performance. Some restrictions are punitive. e.g. our small local school cannot qualify for federal $ for a reading program because the building is not up to federal standards. LOTS of money is involved, LOTS of people have a stake – manufacturers, unions, transportation, food services, oh, & parents and children. Some in the US feel we are far behind because other country’s students spend far more time in the classroom. Some feel the brightest students are held back by the ‘all kids in 1 class’ model. Some feel we are creating unimaginative robots by basing success on standardized tests. Some feel the almighty dollar is driving kids away from rewarding professions & trades. There are good teachers, bad teachers, good systems, bad systems. College is a whole ‘nother story.