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View Poll Results: How will you vote on COLO Proposition 103?
Yes, raise the taxes for 5 years. 25 44.64%
No, do not raise the taxes. 30 53.57%
No opinion / don't care. 1 1.79%
Voters: 56. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 10-20-2011, 10:39 AM
 
7 posts, read 8,463 times
Reputation: 23

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@phetaroi and Bob.

Why are you guys making this issue personal? This is completely unnecessary.

Lets simply use logic. Phetori you are clearly in favor of increasing the tax to get more funding for education. You said you wont vote for it because times are tough. Fair enough but I challenge you to prove the validity of your position anyway.

I would like to see studies that show how increased spending on school systems has historically improved the quality of education (as measured in test scores or some hard data) in the United States.

Also, please share your opinion why despite spending so much on education in the US as compared to other countries, the education here is relatively weak when compared to Asian or European countries.

Additionally, I would like to ask you how as an immigrant from a post communist country where schools had barely enough funding to stay afloat, (and did not have any sports teams, stadiums, EC activities such as clubs, or even a library. In fact, we didn't even have computers!) I was at least a year ahead in mathematics than your students in one of the best funded school districts in the country (Long Island, NY) after moving to USA.

Finally, I would be interested to find out how you believe the extra money will benefit the students. How will the money spent make the students smarter? What will it be spent on?

The goal here is to improve the education system in CO. If increasing spending doesn't help then why would such a course of action be proposed? It makes no sense. Might as well go and donate the money to charity and you will observe the same effect for your every dollar spent. If you want a tax increase for this reason you must prove it will achieve its purpose. If you can not do this then your position is indefensible.

@Zenkonami. I would oppose any "temporary" increase in taxes because anything temporary has a nasty habit of becoming permanent.

My opinion is fairly simple. If you want smart students make them work harder and study more. You will not improve the intelligence of your students by buying them the latest technology or providing them with better conditions. If you honestly think that your students will suddendly start to score better on exams because you buy them a nice stadium, build a new library, buy them new computers, or anything of that sort... you need to get a reality check. European and Asian students study for hours on end every single day. If you want to match their performance you need to put in the same amount of hard work as they do. I used to come home from school at around 3, eat, and study until late in the evening. Some of the days in winter I wouldnt even get to go outside, because i spent so much time doing school work. Money is not a substitute for hard work and personal achievement.

Last edited by DXM1; 10-20-2011 at 10:51 AM..

 
Old 10-20-2011, 12:10 PM
 
20,372 posts, read 37,921,184 times
Reputation: 18179
I hear the arguments for cutting funding for music and football. Those topics have been a part of most school curricula for many decades, it was around when I started school in 1954 and it was there many decades before that in most any urban area.

The current recession is bad, but for me it's not so bad that we have to throw out certain things for the ideological position of holding the line on taxes, a belief flowing from the opinion that all taxes and all government are bad. I reject that sort of thinking out of hand.

The sword that cuts can cut both ways. I worked 30+ years for the DoD, mostly for the Army. I can tell you that the Army has a LOT of bands and a lot of football fields at it's bases. If the anti-tax voters wish to cut music and football from public schools, then we need to do the same for the military; cut all athletics at all of our military academies, no more Army-Navy game, no more AF hockey and basketball teams to go see at low ticket prices, etc. No more marching bands on every post to welcome the troops home, or play at retirement parades, or serenade us on patriotic holidays, or march in city parades, they can just play a tape on the P.A. system. No more "Pershing's Own" or other ceremonial units, cut them all. Close the football fields on military bases, the volleyball courts, the basketball courts, the soccer fields. Use Fat Phil the rent-a-cop to guard the Tomb of the Unknowns. Let's be fair. If ya wanna cut stuff, then cut it ALL. Anyone want to run for office on THAT platform?

I personally recall sitting at the O Club on Fort Bragg, almost 30 years ago now, with the 3-star DCSLOG of the Army and others, while a drill instructor was whining in his Jack Daniels about the quality of recruits the Army sent him. Some things never change.
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Last edited by Mike from back east; 10-20-2011 at 12:21 PM..
 
Old 10-20-2011, 01:26 PM
 
Location: Centennial State
399 posts, read 669,892 times
Reputation: 176
Quote:
Originally Posted by DXM1 View Post
My opinion is fairly simple. If you want smart students make them work harder and study more.
Just keep in mind that "[working] harder and [studying] more" still doesn't cut it for some people. Some people are naturally adept at certain things while others excel in other areas. Yes, some people are born to do certain things given their biology and state of mind. Some people don't have what others do. That can be a lot of things including determination, purpose, motivation, inspiration, etc.

Person A might learn better by immense repetition and person B might learn better by concepts and applying them to real world issues metaphorically.

I think if you wanted to use money for anything, part of that should go to funding relevant behavior from teachers and professors. Having them teach black and white without taking into any consideration each person is unique and has a slightly different way to learn is just going to grind our society backwards from evolution.

But anyways, I came to this thread to find was a discussion about taxes and whether raising them or not would improve or decline our state as a whole. ;D Like for example when Colorado Springs decided to have taxes not raised by vote of the citizens, they had to apparently cut spending in watering their grass for parks and electricity to certain stop lights during certain hours. I saw a similar thread or article about that on either here for the Denver Post. I was wondering if anyone brought that issue up in this thread.
 
Old 10-20-2011, 03:06 PM
 
Location: Colorado Springs
19,075 posts, read 8,986,650 times
Reputation: 18485
Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzlover View Post
Though Bob and phetaroi are talking from different directions, both have their finger on much of the problem with modern American (and Colorado) education. It is this: crappy or non-existent parenting leads to disinterested, disrespectful, and difficult to impossible to educate children. No amount of money thrown at education will do much to solve that problem. Add to it the "welfare state" entitlement mentality that permeates modern America--the idea that one can do nothing (except maybe start squeezing out more kids as soon as possible to increase one's welfare and government benefits) and we are going to get nothing but more lousy parenting, more delinquent and ineducable kids, and a growing perpetration of the same festering problems. And one has to ask, what intelligent person in their right mind is going to want to work in a career where being a "educator" can mean little more than trying to warehouse and surrogate parent those little (and big) brats for 8 hours a day or more? The problems in the schools have way more to do with lousy parenting than they do with all of the combined sins of the American education system. A lot of things COULD be done better in education, but throwing more money at it will do little to change things until a lot of parents grow up themselves and decide to be responsible, loving, caring parents who actually EXPECT their kid to amount to something. Kids need to grow up in an environment that encourages personal responsibility and the seemingly now novel concept that what one does positively with one's life depends heavily on what one is willing to invest in oneself in knowledge, good judgment, and self motivation.
Jazzlover, I think you make some good points there. But I do want to say that all is not well in American education. There are some lousy teachers out there...and I've fired a few (or more often counseled them out of the profession). And there are lousy administrators out there (and I've worked with a few)...and most often they get dumped too, sooner or later. There are some crazy school board members, too...been there, done that.

Class size is very important, in my view, although interestingly, studies show that class size doesn't matter until the size gets up around or over 40. I think ideal is somewhere between 22-28. What the studies about class size don't take into account is teacher burnout. I worked with an English teacher once who, whenever she would have students do any writing, would give each student a cassette critiquing their work. I kept telling her, "Karen, you're going to burn yourself out." But she was driven. And exhausted. And after about 5 years of it, she quit public school education forever. The loss of a truly great teacher.
 
Old 10-20-2011, 03:34 PM
 
Location: Colorado Springs
19,075 posts, read 8,986,650 times
Reputation: 18485
Quote:
Originally Posted by DXM1 View Post
@phetaroi and Bob.

Why are you guys making this issue personal? This is completely unnecessary.

Lets simply use logic. Phetori you are clearly in favor of increasing the tax to get more funding for education. You said you wont vote for it because times are tough. Fair enough but I challenge you to prove the validity of your position anyway.

I would like to see studies that show how increased spending on school systems has historically improved the quality of education (as measured in test scores or some hard data) in the United States.

Also, please share your opinion why despite spending so much on education in the US as compared to other countries, the education here is relatively weak when compared to Asian or European countries.

Additionally, I would like to ask you how as an immigrant from a post communist country where schools had barely enough funding to stay afloat, (and did not have any sports teams, stadiums, EC activities such as clubs, or even a library. In fact, we didn't even have computers!) I was at least a year ahead in mathematics than your students in one of the best funded school districts in the country (Long Island, NY) after moving to USA.

Finally, I would be interested to find out how you believe the extra money will benefit the students. How will the money spent make the students smarter? What will it be spent on?

The goal here is to improve the education system in CO. If increasing spending doesn't help then why would such a course of action be proposed? It makes no sense. Might as well go and donate the money to charity and you will observe the same effect for your every dollar spent. If you want a tax increase for this reason you must prove it will achieve its purpose. If you can not do this then your position is indefensible.

@Zenkonami. I would oppose any "temporary" increase in taxes because anything temporary has a nasty habit of becoming permanent.

My opinion is fairly simple. If you want smart students make them work harder and study more. You will not improve the intelligence of your students by buying them the latest technology or providing them with better conditions. If you honestly think that your students will suddendly start to score better on exams because you buy them a nice stadium, build a new library, buy them new computers, or anything of that sort... you need to get a reality check. European and Asian students study for hours on end every single day. If you want to match their performance you need to put in the same amount of hard work as they do. I used to come home from school at around 3, eat, and study until late in the evening. Some of the days in winter I wouldnt even get to go outside, because i spent so much time doing school work. Money is not a substitute for hard work and personal achievement.
Actually, the reason I'm not voting on this issue is because I don't know whether or not a tax increase is valid in this area. What I tire of is people on either side of the issue using cliches about education to say "yea" or "nay". When I worked in Prince George's County in Maryland, they needed more money. You had to beg for supplies and materials. When I worked in East Irondequoit near Rochester, NY, they needed more money. They couldn't afford frogs for dissection in the high school biology classes for the lower ability students. On the other hand, where I spent most of my career -- Fairfax County, Virginia -- most years we were doing just fine...more than fine some years...and a few years we needed a little boost in tax dollars.

Show me, for example: information about class size, teacher retention data, standardized testing data. Let me see a few of the schools, including both grounds and building. Let me talk to 50 randomly selected teachers. Show me the stats on support personnel. These are some of the factors that ought to be looked at if one really wants to decide if a tax increase is justified. And, as you put it, "I would be interested to find out how you believe the extra money will benefit the students. How will the money spent make the students smarter? What will it be spent on?"

You assume because I was an educator that I favor higher taxes to support education. Not necessarily. First I want to see whether or not the money currently granted is being spent wisely. Then, perhaps increase are justified, based on the factors I mentioned above (among others).

Although this is a side issue, I am one of the relatively few(er) educators who favored No Child Left Behind testing.
 
Old 10-20-2011, 05:59 PM
 
8,317 posts, read 25,174,647 times
Reputation: 9066
Quote:
Originally Posted by phetaroi View Post
Jazzlover, I think you make some good points there. But I do want to say that all is not well in American education. There are some lousy teachers out there...and I've fired a few (or more often counseled them out of the profession). And there are lousy administrators out there (and I've worked with a few)...and most often they get dumped too, sooner or later. There are some crazy school board members, too...been there, done that.

Class size is very important, in my view, although interestingly, studies show that class size doesn't matter until the size gets up around or over 40. I think ideal is somewhere between 22-28. What the studies about class size don't take into account is teacher burnout. I worked with an English teacher once who, whenever she would have students do any writing, would give each student a cassette critiquing their work. I kept telling her, "Karen, you're going to burn yourself out." But she was driven. And exhausted. And after about 5 years of it, she quit public school education forever. The loss of a truly great teacher.
There is no question that the American public education system is imperfect. Most every organization is imperfect in some way. Every organization also has some problematic or non-productive employees. But I still maintain that a major problem in public education today is that it is trying to perform a function for which it was never designed and in which it will never achieve much success: baby-sitting legions of kids (from K-12, in many cases) who lack the basic social and critical thinking skills that they should have gotten from their parents that would allow them to actually learn something. Those kids are likely headed for failure no matter what, but by pretending that they can actually be educated after they have been ruined by lack of adequate parenting, the education system is only making itself less effective in teaching the many kids who actually do want to learn something and who do have parents who care about them. The really sad thing is that many kids are winding up as failures--all the way into adulthood--because their worthless parents don't even give enough of a damn about them to nurture them into something beyond delinquents and mall rats. Sadly, too--contrary to popular belief--worthless parents are not necessarily just those who might be impoverished. There are plenty of middle and upper-class parents who are just as worthless at raising their children. In fact, I've seen plenty of kids from lower-class and even impoverished households that have been far more well-adjusted and have become far more productive citizens than many a materially spoiled, but parentally deprived rich brat.
 
Old 10-20-2011, 06:51 PM
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
85,077 posts, read 99,155,665 times
Reputation: 31559
Quote:
Originally Posted by DXM1 View Post
@Zenkonami. I would oppose any "temporary" increase in taxes because anything temporary has a nasty habit of becoming permanent.
Not in this state.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzlover View Post
There is no question that the American public education system is imperfect. Most every organization is imperfect in some way. Every organization also has some problematic or non-productive employees. But I still maintain that a major problem in public education today is that it is trying to perform a function for which it was never designed and in which it will never achieve much success: baby-sitting legions of kids (from K-12, in many cases) who lack the basic social and critical thinking skills that they should have gotten from their parents that would allow them to actually learn something. Those kids are likely headed for failure no matter what, but by pretending that they can actually be educated after they have been ruined by lack of adequate parenting, the education system is only making itself less effective in teaching the many kids who actually do want to learn something and who do have parents who care about them. The really sad thing is that many kids are winding up as failures--all the way into adulthood--because their worthless parents don't even give enough of a damn about them to nurture them into something beyond delinquents and mall rats. Sadly, too--contrary to popular belief--worthless parents are not necessarily just those who might be impoverished. There are plenty of middle and upper-class parents who are just as worthless at raising their children. In fact, I've seen plenty of kids from lower-class and even impoverished households that have been far more well-adjusted and have become far more productive citizens than many a materially spoiled, but parentally deprived rich brat.
Always blame the parents! Works for me, NOT!

For the record, I do not think the schools are failing, and I do not think parents are failing, at least not the VAST majority of them. IIRC, you don't even have kids, jazz.

"Don't throw money at the schools" is a mantra of many. However, every great new idea for school improvement has a cost. Everyone has lots of great idea, and they all cost money. In regard to sports and music, I can speak to both as my kids did both in high school, also middle school music. High school sports have a fee, and while it's not huge, it does help defray some of the costs. Plus, I believe someone else pointed out that gate receipts also defray costs. In the music programs, kids supply their own instruments, either purchased or rented.
 
Old 10-20-2011, 07:37 PM
 
7 posts, read 8,463 times
Reputation: 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sobe Itsavized View Post
Just keep in mind that "[working] harder and [studying] more" still doesn't cut it for some people. Some people are naturally adept at certain things while others excel in other areas. Yes, some people are born to do certain things given their biology and state of mind. Some people don't have what others do. That can be a lot of things including determination, purpose, motivation, inspiration, etc.

Person A might learn better by immense repetition and person B might learn better by concepts and applying them to real world issues metaphorically.

I think if you wanted to use money for anything, part of that should go to funding relevant behavior from teachers and professors. Having them teach black and white without taking into any consideration each person is unique and has a slightly different way to learn is just going to grind our society backwards from evolution.

But anyways, I came to this thread to find was a discussion about taxes and whether raising them or not would improve or decline our state as a whole. ;D Like for example when Colorado Springs decided to have taxes not raised by vote of the citizens, they had to apparently cut spending in watering their grass for parks and electricity to certain stop lights during certain hours. I saw a similar thread or article about that on either here for the Denver Post. I was wondering if anyone brought that issue up in this thread.
Some kids can adapt some cant. Those who are not capable of adapting can take on respectable jobs that don't require a college degree.

What exactly is your suggestion. That we hire a teacher for every single student because every kid is "different" ?

Raw intellect and extremely hard work pay off. How come Europeans and Asians dont need to be catered to like that? Are they also not "unique" and "different" in their own way?

How would you know if doing school work for 5+ hours a day, every school day, wouldn't help most students? Not like any of your students ever tried it!

Trust me.. just try it in one school and you will see the benefits. Yeah the kids arent going to be spending all of their free time playing video games... they will hardly have free time at all. But they will be head and shoulders above their same age peers.

@katiana

what does sports and music have to do with performing better on standardized tests and getting a better education? Music I could consider... but sports? If those are your suggestions I hope people of Colorado will be voting "No" to the tax hike. It will clearly go to waste.
 
Old 10-21-2011, 12:08 PM
 
Location: Centennial State
399 posts, read 669,892 times
Reputation: 176
Quote:
Originally Posted by DXM1 View Post
Some kids can adapt some cant. Those who are not capable of adapting can take on respectable jobs that don't require a college degree.

What exactly is your suggestion. That we hire a teacher for every single student because every kid is "different" ?

Raw intellect and extremely hard work pay off. How come Europeans and Asians dont need to be catered to like that? Are they also not "unique" and "different" in their own way?

How would you know if doing school work for 5+ hours a day, every school day, wouldn't help most students? Not like any of your students ever tried it!

Trust me.. just try it in one school and you will see the benefits. Yeah the kids arent going to be spending all of their free time playing video games... they will hardly have free time at all. But they will be head and shoulders above their same age peers.
Europeans and Asians from over seas have extremely contrasting cultures to deal with compared to the U.S. I'm Asian myself, Southeast Asian to be exact, which is probably not the stereotypical Asian you were referring to as in Chinese or Japanese though.

Of course hard work pays off. How much it "pays off" depends on the individual obviously though. It's nice to believe everyone can obtain that same intellectual level if "only they try hard enough." And people are most welcome to believe that or even strive to obtain that. Some already have. I am definitely not disputing that at all.

And no, that's not my suggestion at all. My suggestion is what it is, word for word.

Catered to? Please DON'T excuse me for assuming but Europeans countries have different lifestyles that add to their schooling system just like Asians overseas. The system in the United States if obviously different given our lifestyles too. In Chinese culture most of the money in the family is going towards the eldest son and, most of the time, only child. He is expected to hold a occupation in a respected field which either is on par or higher than his parents. Their population density is obviously much more fluctuated depending on the area the family lives in. Not only that, their work practice is different from American where morning exercises are a daily ritual just like going to church every Sunday for most Americans. The Japanese have a similar work practice in terms of mental and physical growth in the workplace even if they use a similar seniority system to the U.S.

There obviously already is catering to individuals who aren't channeled through one straw that is supposedly expected to fit all, pun most definitely intended. There are scholarships for those who show significant excellence in a certain area and those who apply for such. The basics are taught but the expertise is honed through the selection of a major. That's catering to one area of expertise already.

Not everyone is born disease-free, disorder-free, etc. Not everyone is right handed or conformed to using only one hand to write (ambidextrous). Not everyone is going to be marrying the opposite sex when they grow up.

Extensive hours of studying will do nothing for a student if they are being taught in way they do not understand the concept. You can spend your every waking hour jamming information into a child's head but if they can't apply those concepts when it doesn't fit one of the 1000 problems you've made them practice, how else do you expect to hold their hand?

As I've already said, most people learn the same way, but that's because it's already expected they learn the same way. Are you trying to say we shouldn't cater? The system is already perfect? Is that what you're trying to say? Hard work can pay off. Hard work does NOT always pay off. It can, but it doesn't always.

As if there was any kind of guarantee to begin with.

And I didn't say anything about how "would [i] know if doing school work for 5+ hours a day, every school day, wouldn't help most students? Not like any of your students ever tried it!" I never said I had students to begin with either though. I also did not say the current system doesn't work or extensive hours of studying at the moment is not successfully. I already said most people learn the same way so I'm not sure what else you're trying to do besides bring up different points to further prove your point. The majority of students learn the same way that has become common for our society. I'm talking about how to more effectively spend those "5+ hours a day" rather. I'm not saying that 5+ hours is too much because that's already a broad generalization since everyone has different studying habits which take different amount of time in order to be successful. You seem to be confused.


Should I go on?

If you don't want to take my word for it, other people already have take Plato's word for it:

"All things will be produced in superior quantity and quality, and with greater ease, when each [person] works at a single occupation, in accordance with [their] natural gifts, and at the right moment, without meddling with anything else."

Natural gifts, single occupation. The last time I checked, we have more than one single occupation in this world. Thus catering to an individual's learning habits and methods would greatly assist the individual in furthering their education if their learning methods are taken into consideration. No where did I say that each individual must be catered to down to their very distinct learning habits. That is highly improbable at the moment and I don't believe it would be beneficial to only concentrate on the learning methods they only have even if it was more probable. To diversify their learning and how they learn could potentially open new doors to developing other gifts that aren't naturally there YET. Back to your point of "trying hard enough." So yes, if that should happen, if you try hard enough, it'll pay off in that sense. So in essence hard work could potentially pay off if there's even a door there to open to begin with. To find that door, individuals have their needs. Which brings us to a whole circle.

Last edited by Sobe Itsavized; 10-21-2011 at 12:30 PM..
 
Old 10-21-2011, 01:56 PM
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
85,077 posts, read 99,155,665 times
Reputation: 31559
Quote:
Originally Posted by DXM1 View Post
@Zenkonami. I would oppose any "temporary" increase in taxes because anything temporary has a nasty habit of becoming permanent.

I heard a debate on this issue this morning on KCFR. It's sunsetted. In other words, it has to expire in five years.
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