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> Obama To Alienate Even Those That Can't Vote, - However, I agree with him
BaphometsAdvocat...
post Sep 27 2010, 04:10 PM
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A Longer School Year Just Makes Sense
QUOTE
The idea of a longer school year, I think, makes sense," Obama said. "Now, that's going to cost some money ..., but I think that would be money well spent."


Questions For Debate:

Will making the school year longer alienate the Grade & High School voters of the future?

Could this mean little Democrats voting Republican when they're of age over the bitterness? (see also The South)

Despite this being a long standing Republican talking point do you think Obama could get this done with his base?

What do you think of a longer school year? Will it help?
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Amlord
post Sep 27 2010, 06:01 PM
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Will making the school year longer alienate the Grade & High School voters of the future?
Could this mean little Democrats voting Republican when they're of age over the bitterness? (see also The South)

Education is a local issue. Why is the President interjecting in this discussion? I don't think this will alienate anyone. Kids just don't like adults and they don't differentiate between political parties for the most part.


Despite this being a long standing Republican talking point do you think Obama could get this done with his base?

Where is the money going to come from?

Where is the mandate going to come from? This is the wrong message at the wrong time.

What do you think of a longer school year? Will it help?

No, it will not. The problem with our school system is not that the kids don't spend enough time in a school or that they don't have enough home work.

My kids, for example, are well educated and don't require any additional school time. If anything, they are over-schooled. However, the time they spend in school is spent on meaningful study, including *gasp* religious education. The key to education is parental involvement and no government program is going to fix that. No amount of extra time behind a desk is going to fix that. No President is going to fix that.

As long as "parents" have the feeling that their kids are going to be okay without an education and fail to stress the importance that an education has on having food on the table, kids are doomed. As long as we continue to reward and subsidize failure, we will have more failure.

The system is broken. The incentive to succeed in school is gone. We should save money on more teachers and spend it on graduation bonuses. If you graduate with high marks, you get money. Make public school have the same incentive structure are a job. If you succeed, you get a bonus. Money motivates (contrary to my boss's opinion ). Let's motivate these kids.

For those that think I'm just being an Obama hater, I do like his Race to the Top initiative. I think making school systems come up with innovative approaches is a good thing and encourages competition.
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BaphometsAdvocat...
post Sep 27 2010, 06:26 PM
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QUOTE(Amlord @ Sep 27 2010, 02:01 PM) *
What do you think of a longer school year? Will it help?

No, it will not. The problem with our school system is not that the kids don't spend enough time in a school or that they don't have enough home work.

I must heartily disagree with you. Homework is:

a) Far too onerous as it is. My son is in the 6th grade which in this school district is middle school. He is in his 3rd week. He has over 2 hours of homework a night. What are they doing during the day? My daughter is in 1st grade after being in half day Kindergarten (which is just silly) and she's got 45 minutes to an hour an a half so far... with no Friday break. Keep in mind my son plays football and has signed up for Alternative Cultures & Languages extra curriculum (basically they see what language the kids who take this have an aptitude for) so he's already busy. My daughter wants to start dance.

B) Not the best place to learn, or reinforce anything. I did almost all of my homework on the bus, or in the class as it was being taught. (I was one of those smart kids who literally refused to do an ounce of extra work because I was already getting As without any effort.)

School's biggest problem is that it strives for mediocrity. Get the worst students to the middle, and leave the best ones alone and hope they don't get too bored. I recognized this in the fifth grade and watched it all the way through to my Junior year in college. And, just like my son, I was bored out of my mind.

A longer school year might help families who have both parents working to get by. That's 8 hours of day care they don't have to pay for.

This post has been edited by BaphometsAdvocate: Sep 27 2010, 06:27 PM
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Paladin Elspeth
post Sep 27 2010, 08:51 PM
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Will making the school year longer alienate the Grade & High School voters of the future?

They will get used to it. During summer vacations kids get bored, and they miss the friends they can only see when school is in session.

Could this mean little Democrats voting Republican when they're of age over the bitterness? (see also The South)

Do you mean that "little Democrats" will join with some Texans in calling for secession? If my parents pronounced school "skewl" (shudder!), I probably would be sweating over readin', writin', 'rithmetic, and creationism as it is, and I wouldn't consider that there were any options for kids connected to education, at least through high "skewl".

(If the parents want a kid to receive his or her formal education in a parochial environment, fine. But a kid raised to believe that the earth is only 6,000 years old will have problems pursuing a major in Geology and other sciences down the road.)

Despite this being a long standing Republican talking point do you think Obama could get this done with his base?

Maybe. There's a gulf of difference between people talking about it and actually instituting measures that are called for to carry it out.

What do you think of a longer school year? Will it help?

Considering that most kids do not go home any more to help their parents tend and harvest the crops, and that most parents who work do so outside the home and cannot stay home to spend time with their kids, it might be helpful. The longer a student is in class, the more exposure s/he receives on the given subject. Those who are willing to learn will learn.

There is currently a great hue and cry over other nations surpassing ours in the field of education, and the performance of their students compared to our students verifies what is being said. If we care about what is happening, maintaining our educational system's status quo does not make sense.

But I would like to see regular three-day weekends for families if school is going to be held year 'round.

This post has been edited by Paladin Elspeth: Sep 27 2010, 08:53 PM
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Curmudgeon
post Sep 27 2010, 11:12 PM
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Questions For Debate:

Will making the school year longer alienate the Grade & High School voters of the future?

This question seems to me to be a non-sequitur. Most of the non-voters that I have known have been home schooled, drop-outs, etc. The better educated we are, the more likely we seem to be to vote. Dropouts seem more likely to feel, "One vote won't matter." or "Politicians only listen to donors." When I was in school, the schools were polling places. The government wanted the voting machines tested. The day before Election Day, every student in school "voted." Our results were compiled, but not published until the day after Election Day; but school is where I learned that I was expected to be an informed voter!

When I was in school, I was aware of the school calendar mostly because we were told when it was letting out for vacation, and when we had to return.

It wasn't until I was an adult, listening to debates by people running for the school board that I realized that there was politics and business involved, and that there was flexibility in the school calendar. (Michigan state law requires a minimum number of classroom hours per year, dependent upon the grade.) As an adult, I have learned that Michigan schools need to allow extra time in the calendar to allow for snow days. (And in my High School, Bomb Threat days. We had so many in the days before Caller ID that when they ran out of spare days in the school calendar, an announcement would be made to exercise caution between classes, report any suspicious packages to our teachers, etc.)

It was as an adult, dealing with a need for childcare while I was working, that I became aware of "O'Hora days." Dr. O'Hora, who was elected to the school board in Midland, felt that everyone needed one random day off every month and integrated that concept into the school calendar. Come June, the calendar had to be extended to make up for the snow days that had been lost. This did not alienate students from becoming future voters, it alienated them from parents and teachers who "had lied" to them about when school would let out.

Could this mean little Democrats voting Republican when they're of age over the bitterness? (see also The South)

This appears to be another non-sequitur. I have lived my life in Michigan. I don't really know how "The South" votes or why. I am old enough to remember the term, "Southern Democrats." (Republicans were known as "POLs" from the "Party Of Lincoln.") I was raised in a school system that openly supported the Young Republican Party. I became a Democrat because I reached an "age of bitterness," where I leared that "Democrats Care and Republicans Scare."

Despite this being a long standing Republican talking point do you think Obama could get this done with his base?

His base? Definitely! I tend to claim that I am not a true "Blue Dog" Democcrat because I voted for a Republican once. I have no intention of joining the move to the Take Everything Away movement.

His party in Congress? We may have to wait until after the Election Cycle to see if they can find any courage to act... Politicians this year are very aware of the unemployment numbers, and they don't want to join the ranks of the unemployed!

What do you think of a longer school year? Will it help?

In Michigan, the current school calendar was proposed by the State of Michigan Board of Tourism. Our factories are closed. Even in Michigan, we rely on migrant labor for our farms. I believe that Stephen Colbert testified that his 1 day as a "migrant" farm worker occurred because he was one of 4 American Citizens who did that type of work so far this year. If children are in schools, their parents can't take them to the state's many tourist attractions. By state law, school must be out before Memorial Day, and can't restart until after Labor Day. What is left of our Michigan Economy relies on children having summer vacations.

This post has been edited by Curmudgeon: Sep 28 2010, 08:43 AM
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