Den of the Cyphered Wolf

Saturday, February 13, 2010

End to Detroit Social Promotion

A couple of recent news articles said that Robert Bobb is ending social promotion in the Detroit Public School system. Why does this matter to a dude who is 5 years out of high school who, does not and has never lived in Detroit? My mom is a retiring teacher in Detroit and she hated, scratch that loathed social promotion.

The teachers over the years have gotten a lot of flack for the problems of the Detroit Public Schools system, but there is only so much teachers can do. When a student can't read its harder to teach. Its worse when you consider that there are also other students in the class, and getting the ones up to speed who are behind just to learn what they should for that grade level takes an inordinate amount of time. Over the years the problems become compounded so that by high school students may be ridiculously behind. Some of them get so discouraged that they figure they can never catch up end start believing class is a waste of time. At that point some of them start dropping out or disrupting the classes as a whole.

I'm glad the problem is being attended to but at the same time there are reasons why social promotion exists. Having kids who are drastically different ages in the same class can be a problem. Sixteen-year-olds may pick on thirteen year olds. Also there is a stigma about repeating a class. While in college I've realized that classes are tough and have had to take classes over again. I'm not proud of it but its better than getting over your head. I think its similar for high school students and their parents want to them to move on maybe not considering the ramifications of moving forward unprepared.

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