Monday, November 5, 2012

The Lottery

After watching The Interrupters and reading Ordinary Resurrections, the environment of low quality education that this film showed in the public schools was not surprising. However, what I did find surprising was the community resistance against a successful charter school that was attempting to build another school to provide a higher quality of education to more children in the area. I was always a supporter of the teacher union because my mother is a teacher, but after seeing how poorly and maliciously Eva and here staff were treated for stating that unsuccessful educational facilities should be removed, and successful systems promoted, I am beginning to question the true motivations behind the union; are they protecting good teachers from being abused or are they protecting bad teachers from being punished? Either way, based on the evidence provided by this film, the quality of education a child receives doesn't seem to be a primary concern for them.

In attempting to explain the root problem in the educational system in impoverished, inner-city neighborhoods, Eva Moskowitz said: "The problem is not the parents, the problem is not the children, the problem is a system that protects academic failure and limits the choices parents have." I believe she is correct in this opinion. What parent doesn't want their child to go to a good school and receive a good education? They often don't have a choice in the matter; wherever their children are zoned to go is where they will go, regardless of the condition the school is in. I admire the parents who attempt to get their children into a charter school like the Harlem Success Academy, but even they have the odds stacked against them in the lotteries that will determine whether or not their child receives a good or bad education. It's unfortunate that this is how our education system operates, and I wish Harlem Success Academy and other schools like them success in their efforts to improve the school systems in these areas and reverse the mentality that failure is acceptable in the education of children.

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