Our children’s education is in crisis

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There are many reasons why our education system is in crisis. Prospective educators are subjected to a trendy oppression-obsessed, feel-good and esteem-ridden curriculum with little emphasis on mastery of subject matter. Note some college courses offered to prospective educators: Social Diversity in Education, Oppression of the Disabled, Diversity and Change, Lesbian/Gay Oppression and Multicultural Education.

Some educators prefer to be called “facilitators” and consider themselves bystanders as they guide the self-educating child. Requiring and abiding by a curriculum is considered cramping the human spirit.

Another factor in the decline of our schools was the elimination of music education programs. Learning to play an instrument is an unforgiving endeavor: You cannot hide a wrong note or a missed beat. Demanding rigorous, disciplined repetitious drills are indispensable for the development of a variety of skills, musical or otherwise.

But such drills are frowned upon and, in some schools, considered corporal punishment. There is evidence of the efficacy of this approach, though: Just ask any student to perform the latest rap hit. The National Commission on Music Education reported that “in 1987-89 students taking music courses scored an average of 20-40 points higher on both verbal and math portions of the SATs ....”

I suggest all education professors and prospective educators begin learning how to play an instrument, perhaps the violin. The benefits of disciplined repetition will soon become apparent to them as well as their neighbors.

Ed Konecnik


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Reader Feedback

lena from Bayside says:
Mr. Konecnik

Thank you! Thank You! THANK YOU! I am a NYC school teacher--dead smack in the middle of my career -- I have too many years behind me to give up and too many ahead of me to retire. I'm stuck. Stuck with the crap that supposedly "educating" children has become. Stuck with uninvolved parents (who look everywhere BUT in the mirror when it comes to blame--even though THEY are the first teachers). Stuck with administrators who care more about the countdown to retirement at Max salary than what is the HUMANE and proper thing to do when it comes to both children AND their colleagues. It doesn't help that the (thank ALL holy deities in whom anyone has EVER believed that he's leaving) mini megalomaniac mayor has done everything he could to DESTROY the education system in his 12 years in office. We need to toss the "hippy dippy" bullspit and get back to teaching reading, writing, math, cold hard, undeniable facts and stop coddling the kids of today. We're doing them no favors by all this "supposed" self esteem building nonsense. My self esteem came from a job well done and knowing what the hell I was taught. I didn't EXPECT a teacher to entertain me. It never OCCURRED to me that a TEACHER had to engage me. I was taught that I had to find a way to internalize the knowledge that was being taught. The onus was on ME and it damned well should have been!...And I turned out fine!

Thank you again, Sir!
Sept. 29, 2013, 2:04 pm
bnc626 from Queens says:
You can blame the overcrowding of schools in Northeastern, Queens for this!! If people actually followed the zoning laws in Flushing and Bayside, then the schools wouldnt be so overcrowded!!
Oct. 1, 2013, 12:03 pm
Joe Moretti from Jamaica says:
bnc626 from Queens got it right, following the zoning laws. Most of our quality of life issues stem around either poor zoning laws or skirting zoning laws, hence overcrowding, hence a huge burden on the system, especially one that does not have the infrastructure for these extra people.
Oct. 2, 2013, 10:35 am
Thaddeus Russell Jr. from New York City says:
The past 12 years have been an abomination, but then again, the two decades preceding were a precursor. Those 30 years yielded a disconnect from the imperative fundamentals of what a REAL education should be. WE ALL have allowed the education of our children and grandchildren to be hijacked, especially during the meglomaniacal current administration. Parents, and grandparents, have been brainwashed into viewing the educational system from the sidelines. This has to change!
Oct. 12, 2013, 12:05 am

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