My mom is a teacher. My sister is a teacher. I’ve raised two kids through the American school system, mostly through public schools though my son did attend a private high school. During that time I was very active in school activities with both of my kids, often being a helper dad on field trips and similar. I have also donated my time to several high schools, delivering speeches to the business students regarding entrepreneurship, business management and goal setting.
My point is that I have some experience in school matters.
There’s a new study out right here that shows two interesting, though not unexpected things:
- Female teachers routinely give lower marks and grades to male students.
- Male teachers treat all students the same regardless of gender.
If that’s not bad enough, the study also showed:
- Female students expect the male teachers to give them preferential treatment over the boys.
- Male students know that the female teachers tend to grade them lower.
I’ve already talked about how much college sucks. But this isn’t even college we’re talking about here. This is normal school.
Is it any surprise that women teachers are less rational and less objective than male teachers? Is it any surprise the female students expect to flip their hair and get better grades from male teachers? (Even though they don’t?)
I wasn’t surprised when I read any of this. And THAT is the saddest part. Things have gotten so bad with this stuff that I’m not even shocked or surprised any more. Hell, it doesn’t even make me angry any more. I just read yet another study about how women are giving men the shaft, and getting away with it because men are too pussy to do anything about it, and I just nod and say “Yep”.
I’m against the entire concept of classroom learning to begin with, but this just makes it all worse. Not that it matters. The “education industry” (though it’s technically government, not an industry) is as entrenched into society as monogamous marriage, so it’s going to be many decades before people slowly start to realize how badly we’re hurting our children with this system (both the girls and the boys) and begin to make some real changes.
And to you guys who think “Those poor schools just don’t have enough money! If they had more money they’d run just fine!”, let me tell you a little story. It’s a true story from a few years ago.
Back when my kids were younger and I was still married, we started receiving letters from my son’s public school that because of “draconian cutbacks” in the state’s educational system, the classes were too poor to buy paper.
That’s right. This nice public school in an upper-class suburban neighborhood couldn’t afford…paper. Or at least, that’s what they were telling us. The letter was begging parents to bring in any spare paper they had to the classroom so the students wouldn’t run out of paper by the end of the school year.
I couldn’t believe it and called bullshit on it immediately. However my wife at the time confirmed to me that she had spoken with some of the staff at the school and that indeed, yes, they really were in dire financial straights and could not afford paper.
“Well hell,” I said to her, “This is stupid. I can go down to Costco right now and buy a full box of paper, which is ten reams, for about thirty-five bucks. Next time you go down to pick up the kids, just swing by Costco, pick up a box of paper or two, charge it to my company, and hand it to their teacher. Problem solved, at least for our classroom.”
So we did that. I had my company spend about $70 on two big boxes of paper for my son’s classroom. My wife at the time visited the school during the day and dropped it off. However, as she walked down the halls of the school carrying the boxes she noticed something very odd.
In every classroom she passed, they were installing gigantic, brand-new flat-screen plasma screens. Realize that this was about 10 years ago…these screens were $5000 apiece back then. Yet here they were, installing them in every classroom. So this school who allegedly could not afford $70 for new paper for the classroom had hundreds of thousands of dollars to install expensive plasma screens.
The wife was horrified. She asked my son’s teacher as well as the office admin staff why they were purchasing this ridiculously expensive equipment at the same time they were sending sky-is-falling panicked letters home to parents screaming they didn’t have enough money for paper. The teachers and administrators gave her a bunch of defensive legalese double-talk about how the tech budget didn’t apply to the logistics budget and how this budget couldn’t overlap with that budget blah blah blah blah.
From then on, any letter that came from my son’s school that wasn’t a report card went directly into my shredder without being read. A year later I pulled my son from that school and placed him in a charter school (which was still an incompetently run mess, but slightly less so).
Just like healthcare, education has become a scam of epic proportions, designed to be expensive, rip you off, enrich a small few at the top (namely politicians, principals, union leaders, and high-end school administrators), while screwing parents and kids.
My strong advice to you is to homeschool your kids. No, this is not a perfect option and I admit there are some serious drawbacks with homeschooling, but it’s way better than sending your kids to an 1800’s-style brainwashing asylum called “school” where they’ll be treated like shit and have their minds filled with garbage while the school administrators pretend to be poor and try to find more ways to vacuum money out of your wallet than they’re already stealing from you in the form of property taxes.
The distant second-best option is to send your kids to either a charter school or a private school that relies upon parents paying them rather than government bureaucracies. At least that way when the school screws up your kids (and it will) or tries to rip you off (and it will) you have some leverage to lessen the damage. Not much, but some, and some is better than none.
And please don’t retreat to the tiresome refrain that I somehow “hate teachers”. Teachers aren’t necessarily the problem. The system and the administrators are the problem. In the 21st century we don’t need classrooms. We don’t need some teacher lecturing kids on facts they can look up instantly on their smartphones whenever they want. All we need are small workgroups of 3-5 children with one computer with internet access and a nice grandma over Skype encouraging them. They’ve done this in countries like India and it works far better than the antiquated system currently in use that we refuse to change.
As with so many other things, the western world is in a for a very rude awakening when they realize this whole “education” thing isn’t working at all.