Rethinking School

I distinctly remember the first time I thought our educational system was broken: it was when I was a student teaching assistant at USC. I was 18 or 19 the first time I volunteered in an innter-city classroom. The teacher was a kind, well-meaning man, but with with approximately 40-students at 3-different reading levels, 3-different math levels and 3-different English-speaking levels, 99.9% of his job was spent keeping the room below a dim roar, he had very little time left to actually teach. 

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It was 4-months into the school year and he was the 3rd-teacher this classroom of elementary school children had seen. As the product of, not unflawed, but schools that were considered decent, my mind was BLOWN.
Despite my own “decent” pre-collegiate education, my own experience was also rife with mishaps from alcoholic teachers who acted out in the classroom to classroom sizes of over 40 (this was in private school). I can only pick-out 5-classes/teachers who really made a difference in my educational experience prior to attending college. So long before I ever became a parent I knew that I would not allow this broken system to be responsible for the education of any child of mine!!!

My family has had the wonderful good fortune to be a part of a long-standing preschool co-op for the past 3-years and it has been everything I could have hoped for: a real community of like-minded families, very low adult to child ratio (1 to 5) and developmentally appropriate learning that allows my child to…well, be a child.

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I am now in the process of creating a cooperative environment for my child for the next 5-10 years of her life, because I believe SO strongly that it is the absolutely best thing for her. What will she be able to accomplish if she can hit the ground running and not have to “unlearn” all the bad lessons I was taught over the year.

A friend of mine, familiar with my philosophy and current endeavor, pointed out a great TED talk to me that has been like a beacon to me. I urge you to check it out and be a part of the change our educational system so desparately needs! Be a spark in the world!
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