2011/12 Note: Waiting to see the education system crash and burn itself out.
My school is suggesting an “Open Enrollment” policy on the Honor and AP classes. This will give students a free chance to join the AP classes they wouldn’t be able to get into. The quote “improving the participation of minorities” gave me one thought: they need more Hispanics.
First of all, my school is mostly filled with Asian students. Out of all the races, basically only Asians take AP classes. Honors is a little more diverse, but still similar. And because these classes are built around over-achievers, it’s a system of “no failure”. This “Open Enrollment” plan is supposed to give others a chance to take the higher-leveled classes. So why the hell did they think of it now?
One reason against the idea is that teachers will need to “dumb down” the classes. The mass number of enrollments will somehow degrade the quality of lectures. How the hell does that happen? Colleges have hundreds of students in one room, yet they do fine. Teachers are part of the problem. Some don’t teach well, some teach with no clue as to what they’re doing. Classes are hard because they do more work. This is my experience.
In the end of the day, if the teacher taught well, then there’ll be no worries. Everyone is capable of learning, but require different ways to learn. The old “read and study” technique does not mix well into a world of Internet and television. I never read the books, because I’m angry that the teacher didn’t explain well enough to get me to want to learn the topic. See, we still think of intelligence as A, B, C, and F grades. The A’s will succeed, and the F’s will fail in life. Low-level thinking, but its there. If you don’t believe me, visit a high school for a few days. See how teachers treat the good and bad students.
Another reason is the success of the Honors/AP classes. Frankly, I’m in for more diversity. Sitting in a class full of Asians, think “ching chong ching chong”. All day, all year long. More diversity, new insides on ways of thinking. These things you just can’t teach. And if the schools didn’t allow equal opportunity, isn’t it like segregation again? There are students who do poorly, but the school is to blame too. Schools don’t encourage the “out of the box” ways of teaching. The traditional way is ineffective and dull, causing a lack of interest by students. Schools don’t even motivate students right. They always say “pass this class to succeed“, but I would try to disprove that. Not that I would in my current status, but it’s an issue I’d fight against. The success of classes depends on a student-teacher relationship. Teach well, and students will enjoy class. Once they enjoy, and boom, it’s a miracle. My school should take the risk. Would they really want to deny students a chance to change? If this policy doesn’t come, I will never support a single school issue again.
This idea basically came from my school newspaper. I wanted to say something honest on the topic, because the writer had to be neutral. I support this idea, even if it destroys the classes. Who cares about some scores or “success” of classes? Way I see it, until NCLB is gone, we’ll fail lower and lower. Not sure whether that’ll help the current education status. Only time will tell. And some good decision-makers.
This is my view. Some students are lazyasses and will fuck up the courses, but I doubt they’ll even try to enroll anyways. This Regular/Honors/AP class separation just categorizes students. We should get rid of it, and stick to good teaching. Advanced courses can teach more or harder, but if students don’t understand anything, it’s wasted effort.