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Old 05-14-2009, 01:05 PM
 
943 posts, read 1,767,014 times
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Default If the best teachers in the country all taught at the worst underperforming ghetto school- would the students excel?

When students in poverty stricken ghetto schools fail most of the blame always goes to the teachers and principal. Very little official blame goes to our messed up culture, the parents, or the sweet little students. It is easier to blame the teachers and administrators.

I know there are some really bad teachers at some really bad schools, but I wonder if even the best teachers and principals could turn around some of the terrible under performing schools.

If the hundred best teachers in the country were assigned to teach at the worst school in America would there really be that much change?

Last edited by Weekend Traveler; 05-14-2009 at 02:21 PM..
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Old 05-14-2009, 01:46 PM
 
Location: USA - midwest
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Default If the best teachers in the country all taught at the worst underperforming ghetto school- would the students excel?

It might make a slight difference, but not enough to be significant.

All of this standardized testing that's been the be-all and end-all over the past few years will just boil down to one valid conclusion: every school performs as well as the demographic it serves.
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Old 05-14-2009, 01:48 PM
 
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absolutely not - there could be some improvement, but not a turnaround

the learning environment wouldn't be strong enough to create a mass success ...... you may dig out more diamonds from the rough though that really excell

without changing resources into a school, parental involvement and accountability and having community support and emphasis on education then it's really a steep uphill battle
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Old 05-14-2009, 02:20 PM
 
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I think that demographics drive school performance far more than teachers.
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Old 05-14-2009, 02:30 PM
 
Location: Sunny Florida
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The best teachers could not make significant gains unless there was home support as well.
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Old 05-14-2009, 04:05 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles (Hollywood)
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Demographics are THE single biggest factor to determine academic performance. Check out a map of high schools in Los Angeles County. The A.P.I. will increase as the distance from South Central LA also increases. It is absolutely predictable.
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Old 05-14-2009, 04:25 PM
 
Location: San Diego
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Ever seen Dangerous Minds or Stand and Deliver? Those are both true stories about great teachers in bad schools who DID make a difference.

Great teachers will make a difference regardless of the demographics. That being said, it would make more of a difference to put good teachers in bad schools than bad teachers in good schools.

Take the students at Phillips Exeter and give them crappy teachers and they're still the cream of the crop, from families pushing for college and a school with nearly unlimited resources.
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Old 05-14-2009, 04:43 PM
 
23,067 posts, read 18,028,806 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Weekend Traveler View Post
When students in poverty stricken ghetto schools fail most of the blame always goes to the teachers and principal. Very little official blame goes to our messed up culture, the parents, or the sweet little students. It is easier to blame the teachers and administrators.

I know there are some really bad teachers at some really bad schools, but I wonder if even the best teachers and principals could turn around some of the terrible under performing schools.

If the hundred best teachers in the country were assigned to teach at the worst school in America would there really be that much change?
Very few professionals are good under all circumstances. Just because a teacher is great in one setting doesn't mean they would be in another. It takes a special person to teach in the inner city successfully. It takes a special person to teach in a high profile suburban school successfully. The skill sets are not necessarily interchangeable. Also would they want to and if they did why aren't they?
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Old 05-14-2009, 04:44 PM
 
23,067 posts, read 18,028,806 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by leftydan6 View Post
Ever seen Dangerous Minds or Stand and Deliver? Those are both true stories about great teachers in bad schools who DID make a difference.

Great teachers will make a difference regardless of the demographics. That being said, it would make more of a difference to put good teachers in bad schools than bad teachers in good schools.

Take the students at Phillips Exeter and give them crappy teachers and they're still the cream of the crop, from families pushing for college and a school with nearly unlimited resources.
No you would have Phillips Exeter going bankrupt because all of the parents pulled their kids out. Wealthy people don't opt for mediocrity. That is why they work hard so they afford excellence for their kids.
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Old 05-14-2009, 07:49 PM
 
Location: Eastern Washington
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I think it depends on how you define "best teachers" - the people who work at Phillips Exeter would probably not work very well at a ghetto school.

But if you had very motiviated and motivating people like the hero of Stand and Deliver - Jaime Escalante - you could get some improvement.

IQ is sort of a forbidden topic, but a lot of the ghetto kids don't have a lot of it, that and they are not interested in higher education as such. A better approach might be to teach English in terms of writing up descriptions of events or instructions on how to do something, to teach Math in terms of balancing checkbooks, how to estimate a construction job, other practical and applied versions rather than blue sky theory.

The home environment has a big effect too - hard to fix the kid when the rest of the family is broke.
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