Education for Today and Tomorrow Education should be everyone’s concern, no matter the demographics or the diversity of America’s population. As parents need to make sure that our children are being prepared for a successful future. As a society, we have taken on the responsibility for education every child, without regard to economic standing or disabilities. Four main factors that I think have a huge affect on today and tomorrows education for current students is the diversity and aging population, government involvement, high school reform, and technology.
Diverse Population Today’s education is affected by many different aspects, from the federal government to demographics of each school. With more diversity than ever before, this has a huge impact on education. The student population of 1970 in elementary and secondary schools was 79% non-Hispanic white, 14% black, 6% Hispanic, and 1% Asian, Pacific Islander, and other (COPE, 2012). In 2008, school enrollment was 59% non- Hispanic white, 15% black, 18% Hispanic, and 5% Asian (COPE, 2012).
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The Census Bureau is projecting that between 2010-2050 that the student diversity will increase by 167% for Hispanics, 213% for Asian, 46% for Blacks, and decrease by 46. % for Non-Hispanic white student populations (COPE, 2012). With such monumental diversity in student populations this is inevitably going to cause new challenges for schools. First. And perhaps most obviously, schools are going to need more highly-qualified bilingual and SSL teachers (COPE, 2012). Schools will also need to have a broader ELL curriculum to help these students to succeed in school (Glower, 2012).
Schools will need to Initiate an early prevention program for non English speaking students as early as pre-k (COPE, 2012). Anecdotally, I already see it here in my hometown, where elementary schools are offering classes called EDP to help 3-area olds to be prepared for kindergarten. Here In New Mexico all schools offer bilingual classes and as parents we have the choice whether or not we want our child to be in them. I also know of some schools here where no choice is given; your child is automatically in those classes due to the fact that the population is primarily Spanish-speaking.
This is owing to the fact that our town is close to the Mexican border. Older Population Having such a huge diversity In schools is not the only factor that has an effect on education. The baby boomers of the sass are reaching retirement age. Financial support is one of the biggest issues, because they are the ones supporting education while no longer raising a child of their own (Glower, 2011). Also, with an older population staying alive longer, the cost of health care Increases and the need for better retirement packages gains significance.
The retirement age is rising accordingly, and some school districts have raised it to 67 (Glower, 2012). With the costs of living Increasing and budgets getting tighter, the older population no longer wants to carry the extra expense that education puts on them. Government Involvement Despite the fact that our Constitution clearly says that education will be the states’ responsibility, the federal government is slowly getting more involved. In 1867 the Department of Education was created to help get current information out to teachers Department AT education, 2012).
It was not until BUY Tanat ten Department AT Education became a cabinet- level agency in the federal government with the power to operate programs in every area and level of education (U. S. DE, 2012). While I think it is good that the federal government can provide funding when states are short, I o not agree that all schools are exactly alike and that all students learn the same way. In 2001 the program known commonly as No Child Left Behind was created to make sure that federal aid was available to economically disadvantaged students.
This act has expanded the role that the federal government plays in today’s education by requiring states to have annual “high stakes” testing, school- and district-wide academic progress reports, and increased qualifications for teachers, all of which directly affect funding (Wisped, 2013). If a state does not abide by these requirements, then they do not qualify for federal aid. Federal funding is especially important when schools have to do budget cuts and the first thing that is cut is teaching positions. Teachers need to be in the classroom in order for students to be able to learn.
Not every student learns the same way, thus each state and local government should be able to exercise control over the curriculum that needs to be taught in that region. As long as students are learning the academic skills that they need and teachers are dedicated to the learning of their students, then the federal government doesn’t need to be so heavily involved. While I agree that standards for all teachers to be qualified and highly educated are extremely important, the states-? and to a lesser degree the districts-?should be the ones to make that choice.
High School Reform Everyone can agree that there needs to be some type of reform to make sure that students are successful and that they are being properly prepared for live outside of school. As the White House puts it, “To create an economy built to last, we need to provide every child with a complete and competitive education that will enable them to succeed in a global economy based knowledge and innovation” (n. D. ) There are five halogens that face high school reform. First, there is a need for a personalized and orderly learning environment for students (Quinn, 2006).
This means simply that the student’s learning environment has an effect on their academic progress. Secondly, teachers need to recognize if a student has poor academic skills and that it needs to be caught and remedied as soon as possible (Quinn, 006). The sooner the intervention, the sooner the student can be successful. The third challenge is that school curriculum needs to be updated and teachers need the flexibility to be able to add their own creativity to it (Quinn, 2006).
The biggest complaint amongst students is that learning is boring and that there is no excitement for learning, or for that matter a reason to even be there in class. The fourth challenge is we need to encourage change in highly over-stressed high schools (Quinn, 2006). Not everybody likes change, but when schools are overwrought, something needs to be changed– because it is not a good environment for anyone to be in. The last challenge is making sure that students are being prepared for life after school (Quinn, 2006). Young adults need to be prepared to either go into the work force or college.
For example, high schools could work with local businesses that offer school credits while working. There could also be “early college” high schools offered, where students are still in high school, but learning in a college atmosphere and earning credits towards an chocolate’s degree or enlarge. I nerve Is an early college nerve In my Newton Ana It boasts a high success rate, with retention in college far surpassing the usual post- high school numbers. Technology in the Classroom With the advancements in technology it has become an integral part of society.
Issues that arise with it, of course; many schools are neither able to keep up with it or afford it. Teachers are strong proponents of technology, seeing firsthand how it is helping their students learn. If a district can afford it, it is the ‘best of two worlds’ as Tomlinson has put it. “They can build strong literacy skills while using technology to push students into higher levels of learning” (Nassau-Beach, 2008). Technology, then, is a boon, but how can each district afford it? I see it here in my children’s own schools: there are not enough computers in each classroom and many are at least 8 years old-?sometimes even older.
There are a number of ways to bring technology onto the classroom. For example, students and teachers can have blobs that can help relay information to parents and students about assignments (Kramer, 2008). Schools can create social networks within the school to help promote respectful and constructive comments before the students are old enough to be a part of a public social network (Kramer, 2008). There is podiatrist– posting videos where students create and design their assignments to be seen in a different type of media (Kramer, 2008). One of the biggest tools utilizing technology is exploring the internet.
Teachers re able to show students what places look like now with such programs as Google maps. It can bring learning to life by grabbing students’ attention and driving them to learn more. Clearly, the challenge here is how technology can be brought to every school, so that every child can use it. Schools that are in poor urban and rural areas usually do not have the funding for technology. Conclusion I think we all can agree that today’s education system has challenges unique to the times. With growing minority and older populations, finances and teacher training come to the foreground.
The possibility of needing more and better-trained bilingual teachers in the classroom with an aging population less willing to support it brings new financial challenges. Making sure that every student is receiving the best possible education available to them while No Child Left Behind expands the role the Federal government plays in today’s education brings into question our very foundations of government. Despite constant revamping, the most disadvantaged schools remain so. All of these factors-?with their causes and multiple effects-?will continue to shape the educational system, now and in the future.