Friday, March 14, 2014

I Don't Blame The Kids

Billy was obnoxious Tuesday evening.  I was taking questions from the set of review problems I gave   the class the previous week to help them prepare for an upcoming exam.  Several students asked me to do all the problems.  I refused.  So many had not even looked at the study guide.  A few expected to be retaught the entire chapter. One student even had the nerve to tell me he wasn't getting his money worth for the course he paid for.

I don't blame these kids.  The worst offender, the boy who wasn't getting what he paid for, is a recent high school graduate.  He attended a fairly good high school in Queens.  Being bright, he was able to get by there with no work.  Everyone had to pass to keep the schools stats up so he grew up expecting to do nothing to achieve decent grades.  He doesn't understand why this is not happening in college.  He gets angry when I won't assign take home tests and when test answers cannot be found by plugging numbers in a calculator.  He has a brain but it hadn't been used.  Thinking is a skill he did not develop in high school.

I don't blame the students.  A Principal once told me we had to give diplomas to everyone as the diploma was the key to their futures.  If he saw some of my students he would change his tune.  He would see the diploma we give today is worse than no diploma at all.

1 comment:

Mamacita (The REAL one) said...

I agree with everything you've said here. Diplomas mean nothing unless they are earned, every step of the way. Free graduation status hurts us all. It helps no one.