Sunday, January 28, 2007
In the beginning of the school year, Bloomberg announced an end to night school. Many people were up in arms. How were these students who did nothing for three years suddenly going to earn the credits they needed to graduate on time? Although I have never taught night school, I know that after going to school a full day, kids that are not the best students to begin with absorb nothing more in an additional class. I know that after teaching all day, I sometimes feel that I am shortchanging my evening class because I don't have the energy to do any more. I'm an adult feeling this way, so how are kids going to do any better? When my day students came in after a night school class, they were often sleepy and never had homework, citing night classes as the excuse.
Yes, no more night school. Critics hailed this as a big money savings technique and a way to end social promotions. What a farce! What a lot of horse manure the citizens of NYC were being fed! No more night school, now there would be late day school. The money saved on the night school program was now going to be funneled into the schools for this program. Generic courses would be offered in the main subject areas so kids from different levels could get the extra math or English credit they needed. A teacher who teaches the math part told me her kids are undisciplined, lazy, and often disruptive. She has three different levels in one section. The administration wants them all to pass. After all, if graduation rates do not increase, Principal Suit and his buddies might not get their performance bonuses again.
No matter what laws the government passes, no matter how many times they proclaim "NO CHILD LEFT BEHIND", social promotions will never be ended as long as programs like this exist. (I don know that there are kids that do benefit from these programs but these kids are few and far between. In a school like mine, with a 12 period day, these stududents could just have a regular class added into their schedule if they are serious about making up credits.)