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Old 07-26-2013, 11:27 AM
 
256 posts, read 338,613 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TonyStarksNJ View Post
EXACTLY

I dont get up in all this school BS. I only talk about it here on this board, and thats when some supposedly smart person posts something not so smart.
Are you referring to me? I didn't get your comment.
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Old 07-26-2013, 11:29 AM
 
Location: West Orange, NJ
12,545 posts, read 19,966,515 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lkb0714 View Post
First, colleges have a pretty good handle on which schools are grade inflators and which are not. So being a B student at HTHS is going to be more impressive than an A student at Manasquan.

Second, typically but not always "better" schools are associated with more opportunities and/or less negative peers. If a child is prone to being influenced by peers it might make a huge difference.
very good points. and to add to this, better schools typically have better guidance counselors and other support staff who will help students navigate the complex decisions involved in preparing for college, choosing a college, and evaluating possible careers. My guidance counselors alone made my high school worth attending.
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Old 07-26-2013, 11:31 AM
 
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A lot of kids who get into Harvard or whatever Ivy League school get accepted because one of their parents are an alumni or they gave a nice donation. It's not the school, it's also family connections.
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Old 07-26-2013, 11:32 AM
 
Location: West Orange, NJ
12,545 posts, read 19,966,515 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TonyStarksNJ View Post
BS

Obviously a kid who took a non college prep track that included basket weaving, shop, gym, and other fluff is not going to get into Harvard even if they had all A's, but if the kid at Englewood took AP courses, scored in the highest percentile of SAT etc, why wouldn't they have an equal shot? I'm an engineer, guess what Calc is calc. Physics is Physics, Thermo is Thermo, Dynamics is Dyamics. Whether its taught here, or some area in Northern India. That's the whole point of STANDARDIZED test scores, an EVEN playing field.

You think a college admin officer doesnt have bias as well. For example, two kids, equal AP test scores, equal SAT scores, equal everything. One kid goes to West Windsor, the other goes to Mediocre High NJ. WW kid is ranked top 18% (because everyone at that school is a genius (), Mediocre high kid is ranked top 5% (because Mediocre High). Which kid is getting the benefit of the doubt? The kid at WW who probably grew up wealthy with every opportunity handed to him, or the kid who succeeded despite the trials and tribulations of going to medicore high Nj?

Now, I am not saying send your kid to Camden High, I am talking about averages here. If the high school is in the top 2/3's in NJ, offers some AP courses, and you take an active role, the kid can succeed.

And please lets drop the "better teachers". Every kid that I went to high school that is now a teacher, weren't exactly "stellar" students. They go into teaching for the summers off/holidays and Benefits. I know this is a massive generalization, and I am sure there are some exceptions, but it is what it is.

Here in NJ, all "better school district" means is higher number of families/students with the "means" (i.e wealth) to provide better opportunities.

These kids are tracked, your genius at mediocre high wont be in the same class as the "shop" kids. I really am puzzled why so many school nazi's on this board care what the bottom half of a school is doing? What impact does that kids test scores have on your kids?
You're an engineer.

Do engineers from MIT and Carnegie Mellon get hired more quickly than from, say, Wilkes University or Northampton Community College?
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Old 07-26-2013, 11:33 AM
 
256 posts, read 338,613 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bradykp View Post
yes it matters, but probably not as much as people think it matters. i'll use my area as an example. the valedictorian at my district's school from my year went to a local school none of you have ever heard of. the one from the year before went to Boston College (a good school). the valedictorian of a "better" school in my area went to Lehigh. the valedictorian of an even better school went to Northeastern.

then....my high school (private, because the public schools in my area are just not that great) sent 20 kids to Boston College, 10 kids to Lehigh, 3 to Cornell, 6 to Princeton...etc., etc. and none of those kids were the valedictorian.

The problem with some of the schools in my area was there was nothing at the school to motivate you. The kids you were surrounded by didn't care. the teachers cared slightly more than the kids. So unless you yourself were highly motivated, and had the parents who cared...you were not in good shape.

I think a highly motivated individual + parents can overcome a "lesser" school. but the thing about the better schools is that an undermotivated individual with somewhat involved parents has to really try to fail themselves if they go to a better school....generally speaking.
Interesting. Thanks for the reply.
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Old 07-26-2013, 11:37 AM
 
Location: High Bridge, NJ
3,858 posts, read 9,140,921 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bradykp View Post
Do engineers from MIT and Carnegie Mellon get hired more quickly than from, say, Wilkes University or Northampton Community College?
In some cases, sure. Northampton Community College (or any community college for that matter) doesn't offer four year degrees, so not sure why that was included. However, just like applying for colleges as a high school student, the academics aren't the only factor. Where you interned, what technical/professional societies you joined as a student, or certifications get factored in as well. My BIL has an engineering degree from Rowan University, never broke a 3.2 GPA and partied a lot. However, he interned his senior year at a large firm in South Jersey and started working there immediately after graduation. Enough with the "if-you-don't-get-into-the-right-school-your-life-is-over" nonsense
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Old 07-26-2013, 11:40 AM
 
Location: West Orange, NJ
12,545 posts, read 19,966,515 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TonyStarksNJ View Post
Don't take it so personal, i said "there were exceptions". Your wife is one of them, congrats.
i would argue that the folks you describe are the "exceptions" to the norm which is more like his wife. All of my friends who went into secondary ed majors "because you get summers off! how awesome is that?" are not teachers. many of them couldn'y keep the GPA required to obtain the degree, and the ones who scraped together a good enough GPA never passed the certification. Some of those who didn't pass are teaching at private schools in PA. Now, the teachers I do know are very bright people. I'm a smart guy, but I could never teach. Setting aside the crappy pay (compared to what i could make elsewhere), the benefits don't make up for the pay and the dealing with kids...and worse....dealing with their parents who think there's no way little johnny deserved a B. i'd be arrested for assault if i was a teacher.
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Old 07-26-2013, 11:45 AM
 
Location: West Orange, NJ
12,545 posts, read 19,966,515 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TonyStarksNJ View Post
The AP exams are the same! Again, you are bringing into the equation how the rest of the class does. how many kids take the class, is irrelevant. Why do I care if 25% or 50% or 10% take the exam? Again, all you are pointing out is the socio economic differences in a particular region.
the environment created at a school where 50% take an AP course such as AP Chem is more competitive than the school where 10% take AP Chem. that drives students to do better and learn more. That doesn't mean that a self-motivated individual cannot do well at the school where only 10% take AP Chem. they'll do fine.

The problem is...when your child is 5 years old, you don't know if he/she will be the self-motivated type or the kind who might need his/her friends saying "what did you get on the test" instead of "f chemistry, let's go out and hang out at quick check tonight".

and a better teacher does matter. I had a horrible Physics teacher in high school. it didn't impact me, since i was a business major, but my friends who went on to engineering had to re-learn HS physics and were behind their classmates. sure, the curriculum is the same....but that needs to be delivered to the students by someone who can educate them.

if it was as simple as "it's all the same" - classrooms would be tough via video instruction and we wouldnt have teachers.
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Old 07-26-2013, 11:51 AM
 
1,041 posts, read 2,798,933 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by d_vader123 View Post
Are you referring to me? I didn't get your comment.
no was in reference to tdstyles saying ultimately none of this matters. That unfortunately, to a lot of parents, they obsess over things like this. I have more important things to worry about, the schools of my children not being one of them.
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Old 07-26-2013, 12:03 PM
 
Location: West Orange, NJ
12,545 posts, read 19,966,515 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Badfish740 View Post
In some cases, sure. Northampton Community College (or any community college for that matter) doesn't offer four year degrees, so not sure why that was included. However, just like applying for colleges as a high school student, the academics aren't the only factor. Where you interned, what technical/professional societies you joined as a student, or certifications get factored in as well. My BIL has an engineering degree from Rowan University, never broke a 3.2 GPA and partied a lot. However, he interned his senior year at a large firm in South Jersey and started working there immediately after graduation. Enough with the "if-you-don't-get-into-the-right-school-your-life-is-over" nonsense
exactly. and if you go to Lehigh instead of Wilkes University, you can utilize their career services and the connections to alumni to get that internship. You can participate in the numerous technical/professional societies that don't exist at a "lesser" school.

I didn't say your life is over. You BIL is the exception. There are kids at lehigh who partied a helluva lot more, got 2.2 GPAs, and probably are doing better than your BIL. The point is, Lehigh makes it easier to springboard in even if you're on the lower end of your class than, say, Rowan (i don't mean to pick on Rowan).

My buddy who went to MIT looks at his connections on LinkedIn and jokes about what a failure he feels like compared to his classmates. His "failure"? He makes 6 figures as the right-hand man to a CFO of a very well respected non profit. But his friends from college are all on their 2nd or 3rd company that they've started and/or sold to a big tech firm (his one buddy founded Drop Box for instance).

School is not the be all end all. But I'll stand by the idea that if you attend a better school, your opportunities will be greater for a larger population of the school than a lesser school.

People need to stop stressing over #1 vs #25. But if you think you can pluck a family out of Millburn and put them into #299 in NJ and have their "parental involvement" overcome a crappy school - you're ignoring reality.

I try not to get too wrapped up in the school wars. I don't live in the "best" district. But in NJ, you don't have to, because we have so many very good schools.

I would never say one's life is over if they don't get into the right school. People can overcome disadvantages. But...the fact is, they must overcome those disadvantages where the kids at the better schools have to try to fail (of which I know many examples).
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