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Old 09-10-2018, 09:42 AM
 
Location: Plymouth Meeting, PA.
4,526 posts, read 2,250,673 times
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quality of the school maters. It takes more than what you described. Your child can be bright along with others in the classroom however if you have other children who continually disrupt the classroom, and no support from the administration of the school, all the children suffer.



Quote:
Originally Posted by MB1562 View Post
As a teacher I can tell you: educated, involved parents and a stable home life are just as important, if not moreso, then the teacher and "quality" of the school.
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Old 09-10-2018, 12:45 PM
 
Location: New York City
1,371 posts, read 781,463 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FKD19124 View Post
quality of the school maters. It takes more than what you described. Your child can be bright along with others in the classroom however if you have other children who continually disrupt the classroom, and no support from the administration of the school, all the children suffer.
I never said it didn't. Of course the quality of the school and teachers matter. I've worked in a public charter in a very rough section of West Philly, a very expensive private school in New Jersey, and now a high quality public charter back in the city. Parents are the single biggest factors in educational success at any level. If they aren't given stability and support at home, a huge chunk of the battle has already been lost. I've seen it play out time and time again over my 5 years teaching.
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Old 09-10-2018, 03:13 PM
 
Location: Dude...., I'm right here
1,242 posts, read 799,046 times
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I wholeheartedly agree with you. As a parent I want the best for my kids so I'm not going to experiment with their future.

I also believe the change in the schools need to come from the current students attending the schools and not via gentrification. To add to MB1562, for the changes to happen, the change has to start from the homes (families) the current students come from.

There can't be crime and drugs in the area and yet expect the students to be immune to the going-ons around them.

If you ask me, I question the judgement of the parents you spoke with. Not every parent out there is responsible or a good parent, so don't expect them to be making the right decisions. I for one believe there are as many horrible parents out there.

Quote:
Originally Posted by NewtownBucks View Post
This is a very sounds argument until you have kids (regardless of race) and someone is telling you to send them to low rated schools when you have the resources to avoid it. No one is going to do that.
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Old 09-10-2018, 03:14 PM
 
Location: Germantown, Philadelphia
6,211 posts, read 3,048,381 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NewtownBucks View Post
This is a very sounds argument until you have kids (regardless of race) and someone is telling you to send them to low rated schools when you have the resources to avoid it. No one is going to do that.
The two women with children in Lingelbach did just that.
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Old 09-10-2018, 03:22 PM
 
Location: Germantown, Philadelphia
6,211 posts, read 3,048,381 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FKD19124 View Post
quality of the school maters. It takes more than what you described. Your child can be bright along with others in the classroom however if you have other children who continually disrupt the classroom, and no support from the administration of the school, all the children suffer.
You are right.

I think that the thing some people overlook is that not all "bad" schools are full of disruptive students, and some of them do have teachers and administrators who have succeeded at creating an orderly school environment.

I remember talking with a school administator who told me that there is a very simple yardstick one can apply to determine whether a given school will support kids who want to learn:

Do the floors sparkle?

What the administrator meant is that this is a sign that the staff care enough to make the things they can control the best they can be. With that, you have something you can work with and build on.
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Old 09-10-2018, 07:59 PM
 
Location: Germantown, Philadelphia
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Originally Posted by 1ondoner View Post

If you ask me, I question the judgement of the parents you spoke with. Not every parent out there is responsible or a good parent, so don't expect them to be making the right decisions. I for one believe there are as many horrible parents out there.
Well, I can tell you that:

--they're members of the congregation at the Presbyterian church I attend in Central Germantown
--their kids, all of whom were with them at the church picnic after services, seemed to me very well behaved
--the school they attend is not in a high-crime, drug-ridden or poorly maintained neighborhood - that better describes the area around my residence and the blocks to its south. (To its north, you quickly enter a series of blocks with well-kept twin homes, and the MHI for these blocks is a good $15-$30k higher than that in my block group. I assume you've noticed that there is a very patchwork-quilt quality to patterns of residential settlement in this city.) Instead, it's right on the edge of the highest-income Census tract in Germantown, which includes the Tulpehocken Station Historic District (the five percent of Germantowners who live in households earning $125k or more a year live here).

Did you read the mission and origin statement for IntegratedSchools.org? I don't think that it's a sign of insanity or questionable parenting at all for some parents to consciously choose to send their kids to schools that aren't as good but more diverse.

Now, I realize that I'm a sort of walking contradiction of my own position, as I'm the son of a mother who had me transferred out of district the moment I was eligible to enroll in kindergarten because she didn't want me to attend the overcrowded neighborhood public school (Lingelbach is not overcrowded by any stretch of the imagination) and then put me in private school for the last six years of my K-12 career. But it was by singlehandedly integrating my grade school (some of my would-have-been classmates got bused to it starting in third grade because it had room and my neighborhood school didn't) and swimming in a different environment from my home neighborhood that I became what I am. Is it all that far-fetched to imagine that white children who experience the same thing might not be better equipped to function in a society where white folks will no longer be dominant? (The only difference being that for these women's kids, the school is in the same neighborhood they call home - it's just that most of their neighbors don't send their kids to it.)
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Old 09-10-2018, 09:50 PM
 
609 posts, read 456,927 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MarketStEl View Post
Well, I can tell you that:

--they're members of the congregation at the Presbyterian church I attend in Central Germantown
--their kids, all of whom were with them at the church picnic after services, seemed to me very well behaved
--the school they attend is not in a high-crime, drug-ridden or poorly maintained neighborhood - that better describes the area around my residence and the blocks to its south. (To its north, you quickly enter a series of blocks with well-kept twin homes, and the MHI for these blocks is a good $15-$30k higher than that in my block group. I assume you've noticed that there is a very patchwork-quilt quality to patterns of residential settlement in this city.) Instead, it's right on the edge of the highest-income Census tract in Germantown, which includes the Tulpehocken Station Historic District (the five percent of Germantowners who live in households earning $125k or more a year live here).

Did you read the mission and origin statement for IntegratedSchools.org? I don't think that it's a sign of insanity or questionable parenting at all for some parents to consciously choose to send their kids to schools that aren't as good but more diverse.

Now, I realize that I'm a sort of walking contradiction of my own position, as I'm the son of a mother who had me transferred out of district the moment I was eligible to enroll in kindergarten because she didn't want me to attend the overcrowded neighborhood public school (Lingelbach is not overcrowded by any stretch of the imagination) and then put me in private school for the last six years of my K-12 career. But it was by singlehandedly integrating my grade school (some of my would-have-been classmates got bused to it starting in third grade because it had room and my neighborhood school didn't) and swimming in a different environment from my home neighborhood that I became what I am. Is it all that far-fetched to imagine that white children who experience the same thing might not be better equipped to function in a society where white folks will no longer be dominant? (The only difference being that for these women's kids, the school is in the same neighborhood they call home - it's just that most of their neighbors don't send their kids to it.)
The issues are race and SES way more than test scores. We white people will do anything to avoid acknowledging the very strong race component so we talk about test scores, diversity, etc.; but race is a huge factor. Unlike every other race or ethnicity, non-Hispanic whites have basically no experience being a minority in any public setting and we sure as hell aren’t going to do that to our children in schools, some isolated counter examples notwithstanding. The research on this topic, current school enrollment patterns and the past 60 years of court ordered desegregation followed by rapid resegration when court orders expired all demonstrate how important race is when white parents choose schools.

However, the best indicator that race is determinative is that we know from research that white parents will consistently choose a school with lower test scores but more white students over schools with higher test scores and fewer white students. Moreover, I have first hand experience with this as a parent. During the seven years my kids attended our now former elementary (it’s not in PA) school there was a rapid surge in Asian enrollment and once the school hit the tipping point (roughly 40% or so Asian enrollment) it was game over for white enrollment at the school. The district knew this and did everything they could to gerrymander attendance boundaries to keep white enrollment up, but ultimately did so to no avail.

This is a Blue Ribbon school that had the highest test scores in the district and consistently was in the top ten in the state when it was majority white. That’s still the case. Then as now the administration is all white and nearly every teacher is as well. The only thing that changed was student demographics. But with a small number of exceptions white parents in the catchment now either drive their kids to majority white public schools through our district’s school choice program or they send their kids to white private schools.

Where black and Latino children are concerned white parents have even less tolerance. Study after study has found that once a school hits 30% black enrollment white parents start looking for the exists. Go too far past thirty percent and the school goes into a racial death spiral of sorts. Sometimes it’s possible to keep white students by offering a school within a school, the district I live in intentionally put the STEM themed high school inside a comprehensive school that would otherwise have majority Latinx enrollment without the STEM academy. Sometimes it doesn’t work. Jenks tried creating a magnet school within a school and never got white people to bite. Jenks latest effort is operating as a STEAM school. White people can find Jenks’ playground, but the inside of Jenks not so much. Jenks isn’t full of low income kids, but is is full of black kids.

I respect people like the parents at Lingelbach who who have the ability to do something other than use race and SES as proxies for school quality. The also have big brass ones because as this thread demonstrates white parents who do as they are will be accused of parental malpractice, not just anonymously, but by their friends and others with whom they come into contact as well. Peer pressure is powerful. I appreciate the efforts of the school integration group you mentioned but IMO their quest while important is quixotic. White parents want “just so” diversity where there aren’t too many children of color. In a city like Philadelphia or most other major cities that’s mathematically impossible to do on a wide scale. There are so few white kids in the first place.

Fun fact: white children are a plurality of public school enrollment nationally yet most white children attend majority white public schools. Between residential segregation and our ability to work public institutions we’ll figure out how to keep our kids in majority white schools despite demographic change. In case you can’t tell I’m pessimistic about the prospects for school desegregation.
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Old 09-10-2018, 10:04 PM
 
Location: southern california
57,818 posts, read 76,774,881 times
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When public schools allow choice of school
They will improve
If not they will remain crippled by inability to exercise discipline -a critical element in a safe stable environment for learning - if a disruptive school can’t heal itself the student should be able to escape to a better place that can
The child does not need a stimulating cultural diversity experience
He needs to become literate and be able to do basic math
Been there done that

Last edited by Huckleberry3911948; 09-10-2018 at 10:21 PM..
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Old 09-11-2018, 01:48 AM
 
Location: Germantown, Philadelphia
6,211 posts, read 3,048,381 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BR Valentine View Post
The issues are race and SES way more than test scores. We white people will do anything to avoid acknowledging the very strong race component so we talk about test scores, diversity, etc.; but race is a huge factor. Unlike every other race or ethnicity, non-Hispanic whites have basically no experience being a minority in any public setting and we sure as hell aren’t going to do that to our children in schools, some isolated counter examples notwithstanding. The research on this topic, current school enrollment patterns and the past 60 years of court ordered desegregation followed by rapid resegration when court orders expired all demonstrate how important race is when white parents choose schools.

[explanation of how all this plays out deleted]

Fun fact: white children are a plurality of public school enrollment nationally yet most white children attend majority white public schools. Between residential segregation and our ability to work public institutions we’ll figure out how to keep our kids in majority white schools despite demographic change. In case you can’t tell I’m pessimistic about the prospects for school desegregation.
Thanks for the backup.

My own upbringing, which I just described above, makes me a convinced and committed integrationist. It's hard for people like me out there, what with white resistance on the one side and black separatism on the other, but truth to tell, the black separatism is more a reaction to the white resistance than it is any deep-seated social or cultural preference - survey after survey has shown that most African-Americans would rather their children attend integrated schools, and by "integrated" they mean something close to a 50-50 black/white mix. (The 40/30/20/10 Hispanic/black/white/Asian ratio at Andrew Jackson would probably satisfy a lot of black parents too. And has anyone asked the parents of those 20 percent how they feel about the school? I'll bet they give answers more like the one the white Jackson parent I knew did than the ones I'm hearing here.)

And even as whites make their way towards becoming a plurality in this country, it doesn't take that many of them to produce 50/50 black/white mixes, as African-Americans account for only 12 percent of the population. We can't find that many non-scared whites out there?

An interesting fact in light of all this: Those women told me that Lingelbach was integrated when it opened in 1957. Given its location - its catchment probably extends into integrated-and-we're-gonna-keep-it-that-way, thankyouverymuch Mt. Airy - this makes sense. And it raises the relevant question: What happened that caused that to change? White flight from that part of Germantown? (Not all Germantown's whites fled - they account for about 15 percent of its population today, a rather high number for a generally low-income Philadelphia neighborhood - but I'm sure some did in the better-off quadrant too.) A decline in the level of order and discipline in the school? (The testimony of these two suggests to me that this has been fixed if this was a cause.) Or was it just that white resistance to being in a minority? (I am sure that the number of black students rose as whites did leave the catchment.)

Huckleberry3911948: Yes, those are the fundamental things that need to happen. But they're not all that should happen. Been there myself, did that myself, know the benefits of going beyond the basics.
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Old 09-11-2018, 05:29 AM
 
Location: New York City
1,371 posts, read 781,463 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Huckleberry3911948 View Post
When public schools allow choice of school
They will improve
If not they will remain crippled by inability to exercise discipline -a critical element in a safe stable environment for learning - if a disruptive school can’t heal itself the student should be able to escape to a better place that can
The child does not need a stimulating cultural diversity experience
He needs to become literate and be able to do basic math
Been there done that
You really don't have a grasp of what a well-rounded education entails or takes to make happen. They need to do far more then just be able to read and do basic math. Clearly your education was not exactly up to par.

By the way, Philadelphia is a school-choice city, evidenced by the fact that around 30% of public school students in the city attend public charters. But hey, don't let facts get in the way of a good 'ole red faced rant.
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