Saturday, July 26, 2008

Indianapolis Public Schools are OUR problem!

Study: Black males falter in IPS
19% graduated in 2005-06, report finds; superintendent says changes helping

First of all as usual I have an issue with the Indy Star Headline. Black males falter...well the graduation rate is the same for white males in IPS so what the hell is the point of their headline?

Now let's get onto the real problems here. I have read and read of late the crime rates, welfare issues, corruption in not for profits and county government in Indianapolis and Marion County. But the issue that creates all of these problems is IPS. And it is not just a Center Township problem it is a central Indiana problem and we most all roll up our sleeves to fix it like it or not. If not then quit your whining and belly aching about your taxes going to welfare recipients and crime issues from the sidelines.

Here are a few what I think are simple issues we can get off the ground:

1. Get rid of ISTEP! ISTEP was originally designed with a 40% failure rate for students. How do I know this? My parents are both educators and my father was an administrator at the time that fought against this test. Now I am not opposed to ISTEP for students going to a 4 year university but now we have created a system of failure for everyone else. We need to create a system that allows students to earn and yes I said earn not be given a high school diploma. They then can have the opportunity to pursue a post secondary education in a trade or other vocation. When you are 14 years old in a system that tells you that you have to pass a test you know you can't pass to get a diploma to go to college what is the point in staying? What is the incentive to learn and see a future other then the street? When did we decide that all kids need to go to college? I think this one was thought up by the legislators, University folks and test makers like the ISTEP creators. Since when is everyone supposed to get a 4 year and advanced degree to sit in a lab and create new medical advances? Let's use that as an example. You got the degree and create that new product. Who is going to build the building you manufacture that product in? Who is going to run, maintain and repair the equipment it is manufactured on? Another chemist? I think not.

2. We need to activate a motivated group of DADS. If you have read my blog you know how importance fatherhood initiatives are to me. We need to start a DADS program to mentor these young men about life and what they can accomplish in school and on the street. Every male in Indiana can assist in making this happen.

3. Bring back a strong Vocational Program at the high school level and at Ivy Tech. If you have read my program on machinery in my blog you will know what I am getting at. Now I know there are young men out there that have no desire to go to college but want to build things. They want to build houses, work on cars and much more. When I see a young man driving a completely rebuilt 1984 Buick, Chevy or Caddy totally tricked out looking like a million bucks I have no doubt about the creativity, talent or hard work ethic that young man has is given a chance. For those of us in white collar jobs that look at that young man with contempt....can you work on your car? Can you rebuild a 350 V8?

4. We need to look at and build a regional approach to public education in Indiana. We can accomplish this and make our schools the best and creates the brightest and talented. Where do we get the money. Easy.....we have created a Bastien of wealth with our 4 year universities with this idea that everyone should go to college. They have their own fundraising machines and tuition had gone up drastically compared to the rest of the economy. Move funding away from our state Universities for 4 years and drive it into rebuilding our public school system.

I know many will shoot holes in all of this but they shoot those holes with out ever offering a solution.

Peace Dude!

1 comment:

AZ Chapman said...

Good ideas Jeff I totally agree my favorite one in the list is the mentoring. Thanks for teaching me about politics in Indiana. Why dosen't Jan post as much as y do?