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Thoughts on "The Choice is Ours"

I am really torn between the article "The Choice is Ours:Expanding Educational......" On the one hand, I feel that moving a child into a high school that is more integrated can result in a greater education and greater opportunities. However, I also feel that the fact that a school is segregated does not effect a childs education at all.

If a child were to move in to an integrated school with "better" programs, yes there will be more opportunities. Also, "learning through osmosis" can also play a key role in a persons' education. The child will be around people that may want to learn more than the average student, and as a result will become more motivated and will want to strive to accomplish things. It is all based on who the child hangs out with at the school, too. Integrated schools have their "good" and "bad" students. "Bad," meaning that the children are not as motivated, not as in trouble-makers. Also, if the student is able to find children he/she can relate to then homework groups are always essential to learning key subjects. (when allowed by the class) I know that in my Econ class we have a mini study group, and it help immensely.

Now on the other hand, one can say that it is not the school that helps the child, but the motivation that lies within a child to succeed. If he/she attends a segregated school, yes, there may not be as many opportunities laid out on a silver platter for the student, but it is the student that should take the initiative to find the right resources and meet the right people, whether it be in the school or in the community. A child, if given the right motivation, can do anything they put their mind to. However, this is why people feel that an integrated school is the right choice. Again, everything, at least in my opinion, returns back to the thought that a student can only go as far as they are willing to push themselves. Motivation is the key ingredient of every student in todays era. All the resources and connections are there, but they need to take the initiative to go out and seek them.

Comments

First off- please don't take this as a personal attack but reading your entry shocked me greatly. I deeply disagree with your second point. Your view of what opportunities poor children get are somewhat elitist. Those kids don't just not recieve them on a silver platter-they don't even know a silver platter exists that opportunites can lie on. Motivation is extremely secondary to how a child can succeed when poverty and culure substaining are the issues. My guess is (again not be get too personal) you have had little contact with poor schools in Minneapolis. Those kids have no way of even knowing there are resources out there let alone how to get them. Think about it. You live in a community where you have few to no successful adults to look up to and you have been born into a neighborhood where your parents were likely forced or steered to live in. Everyone there is more focused on survival-not achievement. If you don't have heat in the winter, you're not thinking about your grades. It's a sad reality. Kids have motivation, but not for school. Their motivation is to survive and make money as fast and as much as possible, sometimes even illegally if need be. They can't afford to go through 4 years of college after high school to make good money, it's needed now. Putting these kids around other motivated middle-class students will help them in the area of motivation for school, but when they can write on an application that they went to a school that is not identified as majority poor and minority populated, they could be more like;y to get a job since their background was more diverse. I'll save some of this for class. And again, I'm sorry if I came off as attacking you, the idea just made me very emotionally stirred.

Justin, I really liked how you said that motivation can really help a child succeed because I definatley believe that and as I was reading your blog I found myself totally agreeing with you and then I read Anna's comment and I realized that she is probably right in many ways as well. I still think you made a valid point. I haven't had any exposure to the public school system in the cities but I still believe that motivation is still a strong factor in any childs learning no matter where you go to school or how you grew up. A child whole perspective on getting their homework done in school can change just with a little motivation and encouragment, I've witnessed it. You both had valid points!

Here is your love...

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Here is your love...

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