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Almost any job requires some level of education. Education for every person is important to have a functioning society. Because it is important we force American students to go to school until you reach the age of 16. If it is so important then why does America have one of the lowest test scores in the world? Why do American students just slack off while other students around the world struggle to go to school? It is because American students take school for granted. Students in public schools get lazy after doing the same thing or bored because they’re not interested in what they are learning. This doesn’t make for an educated person. To be an educated person you need to have a teacher who is willing to help a student learn and grow and an open mind and be willing to learn and explore new things. Teachers play a big role in a student’s learning process. A student can have a teacher who cares about how the student does or they can have a teacher who just follows the textbook. So they don’t get to know the student therefore, the teacher wouldn’t care as much if they fail the class. Students who feel like they’re important in their teacher’s life can impact a student to go to school more, try harder and even learn new things. Travis Fenech transferred to a small school where there were 100 students per class and the teachers could focus on students more than in a traditional high school where there are more then 500 students per class. “Fenech may not have earned a place on the June Jordan honor roll, but he's missed only one school day in the last year and a half, has a B average, and plans to attend college (http://www.sfweekly.com/2006-05-03/news/astudy-in-size/print, 5-19-08).” Travis’s teachers could get to know him and could expand
on his interests through subjects he already liked. So he didn’t have to skip class and tried harder then before. Going to a small school benefited Travis compared to going to a traditional public school. “’This is my freshman year,’ he says, pointing past the transcript's columns of grades (mostly B's and C's) to another string of numbers: 6, 8, 6, 10, 8, 30. Those figures represent, class by class, Fenech's absences during his first semester at John O'Connell High School of Technology in the Mission District (http://www.sfweekly.com/2006-05-03/news/a-study-in-size/print, 5-19-08).” Travis didn’t even care much to go to some of his classes at John O’Connell, but he made an improvement at the time in June Jordan. Going to a bigger school, teachers can give up on trying to work with students and it shows through their teaching style. If a teacher doesn’t show that he or she cares, then a student will become lazy and lose interest in the class. Teachers have an impact on how a student approaches a new learning topic. When a student is able to work with a teacher that student can develop their own way of learning and interest in different topics. I find going to a small school a lot more rewarding than going to a traditional high school. In the beginning of my freshman year I was a student who thought school work was just something to do. I didn’t feel like education was all that important. In middle school, I felt as if the teachers didn’t care where I go or what I do as long as I do their work. I got mostly C’s and B’s in middle school, and just passed with the minimal work that was needed. So I expected the same kind of treatment at CAT as well. The very first day my expectations were wrong. The teachers were open and wanted to know the students in a more personal level than just as a student. CAT focused a lot on our opinions and personal experiences as a learner. At first I didn’t talk about myself much
and wasn’t conformable in asking for any help. As time progressed I was able to share what I thought with the teachers and it not only helped me focus on my work I found going to school was enjoyable and worth going to everyday. I was able to talk to my teachers and I was conformable in asking for help. The teachers at CAT helped me develop my way of learning. Soon my interest in history and science grew and now I even want to study biology in college. I learned that having a teacher who cares about your education and an open mind will help you find your own way of learning new things. Today I show a lot more interest in what I'm doing in school. New topics like literacy lens and scientific innovations help me work hard and make going to CAT worth all the hard work. Thinking about it working on this graduation portfolio is different from other high schools. In traditional schools students don’t have to defend the fact they are ready for college. As long as they pass their classes the high schools just spits them out into the real world and figure everything out on their own. So some students don’t think of college as an option, and follow what society has place them as. “For a long time we believed in the ‘some kids’ agenda,” Dr. Deasy said. “Some kids will go to college, some kids will go to the work force, some kids can go to the military. That’s garbage. We believe that every kid can learn at a high level and that college is for every child (http://www.nytimes.com/2008/01/17/education/17college.html?_r=3&sq=small%20scho ols&st=nyt&oref=slogin&scp=11&pagewanted=print, 5-19-08).” This quote is from an article that talks about how schools should get students to go to college. The quote references an idea that only some people are ready for college.
Schools that focus on students to go to college would have teachers who are willing to help a student when needed. I never have been to a traditional high school so I don’t know what it is like to have a teacher who doesn’t care if you fail their class. However, as I started developing my own way of learning I didn’t need help from the teachers for me to succeed in what I do. I believe a good teacher is half of preparing a student for college. Once a student is able to work on their own and find their own way of learning then that students becomes an educated person. I know how I learn and how I take in new information and I feel that I am able to move on to college and bring with me the experiences I had at CAT.
Bilitstein, Ryan. “A Study in Size.” San Francisco News. May 3 2006. Village Voice Media. 5-19-08 <http://www.sfweekly.com/2006-05-03/news/a-study-insize/> Rimer, Sara. “Urban Schools Aiming Higher Than Diplome.” New York Times. January 16, 2008. New York Times. 5-19-08 <http://www.nytimes.com/2008/01/17/education/17college.html?_r=3&scp=11&s q=small+schools&st=nyt&oref=slogin&oref=slogin&oref=slogin>