When you consider the title the first thing in most people’s minds would be a groan and a statement similar to “oh no, what the heck does Sarge know about Pilates?” They’d be correct in their questioning my accumulated knowledge concerning an exercise regimen I consider demonic in its inception, draconian in its explanations as to how we’re supposed to get my post-middle-aged bulk into such weird positions and utterly worthless because of its difficulty for lazy old critters such as myself to accomplish. This has nothing to do with exercise unless it’s dealing with the spiritual expansion of the individual.
Governor Buddy Roemer (ret.) debated Professor Melissa Harris-Perry on subjects both articulate and boring as they agreed ad nauseum that Beaurat Obama was a nice guy etc. The apparently (I got this from the Times Picayune in an unattributed story) civil discourse dragged on until the subject turned to Education. Then the reform missile was launched, Bobby Jindal’s reputation remained unchanged on the subject (controversial) and nobody else agreed on anything after that. YA-A-A-Y! Just what we need: a re-hash of what’s necessary to make the situation look better, rather than making things better,
This argument concerning education always revolves around the problem of how bad we look when it comes to our standing (concerning education) in the worldview. Key words: “how… we look”. The answer most people charge after is the total number of dollars thrown at the problem and how to get more dollars to throw at it later. It’s like recognizing the color of the house doesn’t fit into the rest of the neighborhood; so you change it. But you never address the fact the foundation’s cracked, shifted and tilted the structure so badly it’s in danger of collapse. But when you slap a new coat of paint on it “looks” better. Nobody addresses the core problem.
Well-intentioned parents and school personnel being afraid to: A.) act as role models, B.) develop system starting simplistically (3R’s practiced until mastered), C.) recognize not all people are created academically equal and must be constructively separated to remedially enhance their learning (keep them in the same schools and classes but dedicate special tutors to assist so there are NO disruptions of other students trying to get an education) and D.) recognize your kid (dear parent) may be part of the problem because of your failings as a parent. (Ouch!)
This subject is almost never addressed because we find it offensive to think we didn’t produce an Einstein or the next Stephen Hawking. We want to believe our kids are ready to be directed, channeled and funneled toward an end result specified in a standardized graduation date after 12 years of arduous struggle to make the kid as miserable as possible.
What happens at home decides what’ll happen in school. If academics are stressed and the parent participates with the child, things get better and stay on course. Sitting a kid in front of a TV and expect Bert and Ernie to educate your child while you’re in absentia is ignorant and counter-productive. Buying the latest toy computer for your 10 month old to be intrigued by the colors while you never sit and show the kid what the colors are and teaching them how to recognize them is expecting too much of the child. Kids don’t develop well on “auto-pilot”.
Teaching a kid to dream is the most important thing a parent can do. But if we don’t edit the dream: “yes, you can be a great ball player, but you must get good grades in school to get there” needs to stress “get good grades in school” over “you can be a great ball player”.
The enrichment of the child’s soul and education should supersede the pipe-dreams of the child and the parent. Parental guidance and participation in the child’s development overrides the monetary enrichment of a educational system bloated with cash but starved of good values taught to the participants. Money thrown at a dysfunctional educational system is no more than a hemorrhagic waste bleeding both the system and the families involved.
Fix the family: fix the problem.
Thanks for listening.