Thursday, September 10, 2009

Back to School (The Prison Block)

My daughter's back in school. Prison. I mean school--it looks like a prison to me. No windows, cinder blocks for walls. One girl spoke out in class today and the teacher gave her a "detention." I think that means the girl has to be in a room without anything to do for at least an hour.

My daughter wanted to attend this school because it has a performing arts program that she wanted to be part of. Last year, in the 6th grade, she got too much homework. She didn't want me to tell her counselor she was unhappy with the amount of homework because she didn't want to call attention to herself.

My daughter got all these plaques and honors which we have used as wallpaper for her room because she is a top student in her class, of which there are 650 students.

I went to see her counsellor yesterday, her first day of 7th grade, because I didn't want to have a year again like last year--where my daughter couldn't have any extra-curricular activities, or see any friends on weekends, because she had so much homework to do for school.

Believe me, if my daughter, a top student among 650 students, has trouble finishing her homework and can't go out on weekends or have friends over because of the amount of homework, is having a problem with the amount of work required after spending 7 hours a day in school--then there is a problem, because the "average" student must by overwhelmed by this requirement.

And anyway, schools look like prisons, not like a place for children to be all day.

Now I find my daughter doesn't want to go to school. She doesn't like it and she doesn't like her teachers. I know this sounds familiar -- but she enjoyed school last year...except for the homework and "pressure." I know we adults have a lot of "pressure" and "homework" etc--but children deserve a childhood and a schooling that is nurturing and rewarding--not prison, with dictatorial unprofessional people who don't belong in the teaching profession, and "educators" who have no clue about what education is all about.

Which is what we have now.

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