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    Joined: Sep 2007
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    laugh


    Kriston
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    ROFL eema!!!!!!!!!

    Yes, no easy answers. frown

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    Delbows... Thanks for the link to ED in '08. I just fired off an email to friends and family to pass this along. Maybe if enough people respond, it will gain some traction and become an important election issue.

    See.. I'm still optimistic. grin



    Mom to DS12 and DD3
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    Good. The world needs optimists. I'm definitely pro-optimist!


    Kriston
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    This thread has been really interesting to me because it pretty much has summed up our experience with the school system- all 7 months of it. And the realization that I finally came to was that no matter what they did, it was never going to be "enough". After 4 months of fighting bureaucracy and being passed from person to person with the answer always being "wait and see, wait and see, after this or that random date maybe we'll be able to do something". And this with a child sitting in a classroom slowly withering away on the inside. It occurred to me that if they didn't understand now, no amount of me pushing was going to make them really *see*. What I was going to be able to accomplish was to get them to give me just enough to shut me up. Until that stopped working and then we were back at square one, except now I would have the "but we've already accommodated him" line. With all that effort and energy, I could just homeschool him.

    I went to a public GT middle and high school in FL, I *know* it can be done successfully on a large scale (this was in a huge city, it drew students from all over the county). The thing is, there were too many *messed up* kids that this school was just too late for. It scares me to think of that being my kids- or anyone else's for that matter.

    So, IMO, it's not just that the school owes GT kids a "fair" education, it's that they owe these kids not to screw them up beyond belief. I think from the schools perspectives, doing nothing isn't hurting anyone- but my experience says that is a very, very false notion. It's just that by the time the harm becomes evident the kids are long since gone from elementary school so they are never forced to deal with what not doing anything really does.

    And that's my little ray of sunshine to add to the conversation, lol.

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    And don't you wish you didn't feel that way? That's what guts me personally. I WANT it to be different. Heck, I want to do what it takes to make it be different! But how?

    I wish I knew. I wish I had an answer.


    Kriston
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    Great discussion! I've been reading with interest. I too am struggling with should I fight harder? I haven't really fought very much. I've only dealt with the teacher, being trying to wait for that magic grade where everyone says it gets better for GT kids. DS is now going into 3rd. Is this the year I fight? Go beyond the teacher? Meet w/ the Principal? I've met w/ GT coordinator...nothing happened. i've worked closely w/ the teacher. she tried...not enough. I've been told by a mom in my son's school that nothing much will happen until 5th grade. then I can get the ball rolling w/ having him take the 6th grade end of year tests to show he's mastered that and fight for subject acceleration. So what do I do until then? HS?

    My personal opinion is that it doesn't really matter who may do something great for the world. Plenty of average people do great things. It's a matter of school is supposed to be a place to learn, to grow, to develop in mature adults. We all pay taxes. it does work. I have friends whose kids are in excellent schools...whose HG+ kids are in excellent PS schools. But by and large, change is very slow on a large scale. So unless you're lucky enough to be in one of the rare schools, you have a fight on your hands. WHen resources are perceived to be limited, there will always be those that are sacrificed. Some schools sacrifice the bottom and some sacrifice the top. And from what I've heard, some sacrifice the middle.

    Until, we as a country, see academics the same way we view athletics, not much will change.

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    I do really wish that I didn't feel this way. It's hard to give up on an entire institution, especially one that is such a part of our shared cultural experience. It's hard to be this person who says "We homeschool, not because we *believe* in it, but because the schools failed us." It makes us the odd-balls in our homeschooling co-op, it makes us the odd-balls in the general public. But, I'd rather think of it as showing my kids that there's nothing wrong with forging your own path, that if something isn't working you should change it because the only person you can control is yourself. I try to keep all the doom and gloom on the inside (except for when I post it to unsuspecting message board readers, lol).

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    Is there any way to change the subject of this thread? So that someone looking for a discussion about math doesn't inadvertantly fall into this? I agree it is a good discussion. I don't know what the policy is on changing subjects, but I have seen it happen.

    I am deeply in the middle of "I chose private school because public wasn't meeting his needs but should I have fought harder for changes?". But, while I fight, what happens to the child? He asked me yesterday if, in a class of only 4 kids, would there be less teasing about being too smart? First I'd heard of it but he had to have heard it at school. Kids will always be teased about something but shouldn't there be some social more that "being smart" is both acceptable and appreciated? After all, these kids don't come out of the womb with prejudices. Someone said earlier that society doesn't value academics and that's true.

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    For better or worse, we're actually not all that odd in our homeschool group. As ebeth correctly notes, there are more and more of us choosing this path. I'd say that in our secular homeschooling group, we're probably in the majority. Not a large majority, but leading by a (disjointed) nose. wink

    I'm pretty sure it's not for better...but I can't imagine worse than what was happening to my son either. So there we are...

    And yes, perhaps I should really have bottled up my gloom tonight instead of thrusting it out there into cyberspace. LOL!

    But I say again, I think we are asking the big questions. I honestly do. This is the heart of the matter, whatever we decide to do about it or whatever the path it takes us down. Everything else is details. This is where the stand has to be taken, decided, nailed down if we are to make improvements to the system. We must each know what we think a school must deliver and why, and we must be able to argue that position with vigor and persuasiveness, whether on the large scale--the national or state stage--or on the small scale--in the school or classroom. It is what must be if things are to improve. I am certain of it.

    Okay, I really must shut up. You must all be sick to death of hearing me soapboxing tonight! Sorry! blush


    Kriston
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