Class sizes are getting bigger, but does it really matter?
Updated 8/26/2010 10:57 AM | Comment | Recommend E-mail | Print |
By Steve Yeater for USA TODAY
One-on-one: Principal Tiffany Smith-Simmons works with Nathaniel Watson, 9, at Jefferson Elementary School. Such individual attention could become less common as Natomas Unified School District puts kids into classes of 30 instead of 20.
By Tamara Henry, The Hechinger Report
Two years of cuts in state support saddled the Natomas Unified School District in Sacramento this spring with what school board president B. Teri Burns calls "horribly painful" choices: fewer teachers and larger classes, or keeping teachers but cutting athletics, counseling and after-school programs.
Like many districts across the nation, Natomas chose to lay off teachers. So for every three classes of 20 students each that the schools had last year, this year they'll put 30 students in two classes. The teaching staff in this 10,000-student district will be cut by 100 to 340 next fall. No one's happy, Burns says
It seems only conservatives are against unions
Quote:It seems only conservatives are against unions
CI all too often gets away with floating bullshit on A2K.
A2K is not what it used to be.................
You'll run into the same problem with the education market as you do with the health-care market: a lack of transparency and inability to properly judge competing products means that there is no true free market for consumers to choose from, at all. Sounds nice in theory, doesn't work in practice.
I think it's also worth pointing out that a wide variety of studies have shown that so-called 'charter' schools produce no better test scores or results for their students than public schools do - with the exception of the highest-end schools that cater to the very wealthy.
In the past, the 'options to send their kids to other schools' has been an argument forwarded by those who expressly wish to dismantle or defund the public school system. Right now, parents DO have an option with the schooling of their kids, in pretty much every state: they can send them to private school or they can home-school them. What they can't do is send them to a private school or home-school and refuse to pay taxes to support local schools. I don't have a problem with this at all, as these taxes (usually property taxes) are intended to support the community, not one's own children.
You sound a bit like someone who doesn't pay property taxes.
Who is "the community" with respect to public schools if not the parents of the children who attend them?
Not entirely false; unions have helped nonunion workers gain benefits, better pay, working hours, and safety.
It seems only conservatives are against unions; some mystery I can't seem to wrap around the idea of logic. Conservatives must not work for unions; none, and none benefited from unions.
The harm done to unions by Wisconsin is a FACT that boggles my mind. I'll never be able to reconcile the motives of conservatives who would suppress voters from voting in this country, don't want Americans to have health care, want to control women's sex organs, don't support minimum wages, don't want the rich to pay more taxes, but want to keep our defense budget - while we cut funding for our schools and infrastructure.
Complain that our educational system is too expensive, while the average teacher salary is in the mid-forty thousand range. All while class size continues to increase, and you complain our kids aren't getting the right kind of education.
Middle class suffers ‘worst decade in modern history’
By Hope Yen | ASSOCIATED PRESS AUGUST 23, 2012
WASHINGTON — The middle class is receiving less of America’s total income — its smallest share in decades — as wages stagnate and wealth gets concentrated at the top.
A study released Wednesday by the Pew Research Center highlights diminished hopes, too, for the roughly 50 percent of adults defined as middle class, with household incomes from $39,000 to $118,000. The report describes this group as suffering its ‘‘worst decade in modern history,’’ having fallen backward in income for the first time since World War II.
Most middle-class Americans say they have been forced to reduce spending in the past year. And fewer believe that hard work will allow them to get ahead. Families are more likely to say their children’s economic future will be the same or worse than their own.
In all, 85 percent of the middle-class Americans surveyed say it is more difficult than a decade ago to maintain their standard of living. Some 62 percent say a lot of the blame lies with Congress. A slight majority say a lot lies with banks and other financial institutions.
‘‘The job market is changing, our living standards are falling in the middle, and middle-income parents are now afraid that their children will be worse off than they are,’’ said Timothy Smeeding, a University of Wisconsin Madison economics professor.
‘The job market is changing, our living standards are falling in the middle . . . ’
He said that many middle-income families have taken a big hit in the past decade as health care costs increase, mid-wage jobs disappear,and college tuition rises. The more affluent families have fared better because they depend less on home values, which remain shriveled after the housing bust. Wealthier Americans are more likely to be invested in stocks.
‘‘No matter who is president, the climb back up for the middle class and the recovery will be slow and often painful,’’ Smeeding said.
The Census Bureau reported last year that income fell for the wealthiest — down 1.2 percent to $180,810 for the top 5 percent of households. But the bottom fifth of households — those making $20,000 or less — saw incomes decline 4 percent.
The new study says “middle class’’ makes up about 51 percent of US adults, down from 61 percent in 1971.
Since 2000, the median income for the middle class has fallen from $72,956 to $69,487.
Manufacturing loss is occurring because of globalization and outsourcing. Globalization is the increased mobility of goods, services, labor, technology and capital throughout the world; outsourcing is the performance of a production activity in another country that was previously done by a domestic firm or plant.
This ‘elite group of accountant princes’ apparently liked the status quo - a lot. In John Delorean���s 1973 book about GM (he worked at the automaker), he chronicles how his attempts to create better-quality GM cars were hindered by management’s focus on the bottom line and preoccupation with not changing GM’s management system.
“They didn’t want to hear much of anything negative,” Thomas said, referring to GM management of a few years back.
The bean-counting, keep-the-status-quo system came back to hurt GM in the end. As The Examiner put it:
“This approach can only work for a limited amount of time, for it contains the seeds of its own destruction.”
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