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Old 08-27-2014, 06:27 PM
 
Location: Youngstown, Oh.
4,897 posts, read 7,671,799 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by North Beach Person View Post
My system just built a new high school (ok, it's in its 9th year) in an area of $500K-$1.25KM homes. Those kids, of course go there. But a majority of the students come from some of the poorest and most blighted areas of the County.


That's one way, the school district draws boundaries to get a mix.
I can see how that would work. However, they tried something like that in Youngstown, and it seemed to make things worse. There were 3 high schools in the city: The Rayen School, South High School, and Chaney High School. The Rayen School and South High were closed, when the city consolidated schools, and went from 3 to 2 high schools. The kids from Rayen were sent to the new East High School, and the kids from South High were split between East and Chaney. As I understand it, before the consolidation, South was already a failing school, Rayen was not great, but functional, and Chaney was an OK school; they'd probably be rated F, D+, and C+, respectively. After the consolidation, enrollment took a nose-dive, and both high schools were failing. Now, East High is the district's "normal" high school, (and still failing, AFAIK) and Chaney is the district's STEM magnet school. (I've heard that there were 43 students in Chaney's 2014 graduating class--the building was designed for 1200 students)
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Old 08-28-2014, 11:20 PM
 
2,553 posts, read 2,009,246 times
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Originally Posted by JR_C View Post
I can see how that would work. However, they tried something like that in Youngstown, and it seemed to make things worse. There were 3 high schools in the city: The Rayen School, South High School, and Chaney High School. The Rayen School and South High were closed, when the city consolidated schools, and went from 3 to 2 high schools. The kids from Rayen were sent to the new East High School, and the kids from South High were split between East and Chaney. As I understand it, before the consolidation, South was already a failing school, Rayen was not great, but functional, and Chaney was an OK school; they'd probably be rated F, D+, and C+, respectively. After the consolidation, enrollment took a nose-dive, and both high schools were failing. Now, East High is the district's "normal" high school, (and still failing, AFAIK) and Chaney is the district's STEM magnet school. (I've heard that there were 43 students in Chaney's 2014 graduating class--the building was designed for 1200 students)
I can believe this could happen. Lots of parents talk about private schools if public school demographics invert. Personally, I don't get it unless the school hits bottom; a kid who doesn't care isn't going to care any more at a $30k/year private school than at a public one, whereas a determined kid will achieve in either case.
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Old 08-29-2014, 08:29 AM
 
2,493 posts, read 2,198,791 times
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Originally Posted by darkeconomist View Post
I can believe this could happen. Lots of parents talk about private schools if public school demographics invert. Personally, I don't get it unless the school hits bottom; a kid who doesn't care isn't going to care any more at a $30k/year private school than at a public one, whereas a determined kid will achieve in either case.

My sister has taught in the public schools for 35 years. After seeing her school district trying ever new trick in the book, she is convinced that the biggest determinant of how well a kid does in school is how involved his/her parents are in their education. Point being, no matter how good or bad the school is, it is up to the family to take responsibility for their kid's education.
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Old 08-29-2014, 08:35 AM
 
Location: Pittsburgh, PA (Morningside)
12,460 posts, read 11,967,021 times
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Originally Posted by Eddyline View Post
My sister has taught in the public schools for 35 years. After seeing her school district trying ever new trick in the book, she is convinced that the biggest determinant of how well a kid does in school is how involved his/her parents are in their education. Point being, no matter how good or bad the school is, it is up to the family to take responsibility for their kid's education.
This may be the case. However, since both intelligence and personality traits which effect studiousness are around 50% heritable, it may also be that intelligent, involved parents are just more likely to have intelligent, involved children. Indeed, my understanding is while the degree is subject to debate, there simply isn't as high of a correlation between academic performance for adoptive children and their parents as for biological children.

That's not to say I'm going full bell curve here. But I'm simply not convinced parental involvement plays the biggest role here. If it did, how would the upper class have raised so many successful children through the years with nannies and boarding schools? I think the peer culture's attitude towards schooling, when coupled with heredity and environmental factors (lead exposure, proper nutrition, etc), tend to explain most of the difference.
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Old 08-29-2014, 08:48 AM
 
2,493 posts, read 2,198,791 times
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Originally Posted by eschaton View Post
This may be the case. However, since both intelligence and personality traits which effect studiousness are around 50% heritable, it may also be that intelligent, involved parents are just more likely to have intelligent, involved children. Indeed, my understanding is while the degree is subject to debate, there simply isn't as high of a correlation between academic performance for adoptive children and their parents as for biological children.

That's not to say I'm going full bell curve here. But I'm simply not convinced parental involvement plays the biggest role here. If it did, how would the upper class have raised so many successful children through the years with nannies and boarding schools? I think the peer culture's attitude towards schooling, when coupled with heredity and environmental factors (lead exposure, proper nutrition, etc), tend to explain most of the difference.
All these things certainly play a role and she was speaking of her own opinion based on 35 years in inner city schools. She is extremely frustrated on how few parents show up for parent / teacher conferences or volunteer in the classroom and the number of field trips that are cancelled because there are not enough parents to accompany the kids. She is also in a neighborhood with negative peer culture and few fathers.
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Old 08-29-2014, 09:07 PM
 
2,388 posts, read 2,960,847 times
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I volunteered a bit at our local elementary school in Philly. That really soured me on sending my kids there. The way the kids were talked to and herded from room-to-room was akin to my experience in basic training (we're talking 4th graders here). I wouldn't speak to my own kids that way and I sure as heck wouldn't stand for a teacher's aide doing it.

There were always 30+ kids to a class and there were kids in most of the classes I was in with clear behavioral problems - who were constantly disrupting what should've been the normal flow of the classes. I could only imagine how much easier it would be to teach these classes if the 2 or 3 kids per class with problems were getting there proper level of attention in a different classroom. Of course, these are the most expensive kids to educate, so they don't get what they need.

It's also interesting to observe, since the catchment for the school is 5 blocks x 6 blocks, how different kids behaved. The kids I knew from the neighborhood who were polite and friendly on the street and who seemed to have very involved parents were the quiet, well-behaved kids at school. The kids who were running around late at night, being smart-asses to passers-by were the ones getting in trouble in school.

Thinking back to my own school days, at a mostly middle-class NJ high school, the kids from families who were less well off generally did less well in school and went to/finished college less often. Education wasn't prioritized, there was more stress at home over non-school issues, and some families even take it to the point of being anti-intellectual.
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