There is a lot of tension hovering over education in regards with Charter schools. They are privately owned, publicly funded schools that require an application to be filled in order to attend the school. If the school receives an abundance of applications, there is a lottery or a random choice of the applicants.
The film The Lottery was focused on the Harlem Zone charter schools, which were shown to be successful. It showcased four families who are waiting for the lottery day to see if their child will be going to the charter schools in the upcoming school year. Out of hundreds who apply, there is only a small amount of applicants that get picked, leaving the rest to go to their zoned schools, which they are not happy with. In the film, the charter schools are the way for their children to get the best education.
What I liked about the film was that it showed that a focus on one-on-one, teacher-student time is essential to helping children learn. Also, the film showed that the current way that traditional public schools are forced to teach is not working and that something needs to be done so that EVERYONE can get a good education.
What I didn’t like was that the film was biased and had an agenda. There was a huge emphasis on how horrible teacher unions were and how they acted thuggish. There were complaints on the film about how the teacher union contracts are not allowing the charter schools to do what they want. It made me wonder what is so horribly wrong about unions, about having certain standards that teachers need to fulfill, and what was so wrong with having teacher’s wages be nonnegotiable?
I do agree that this education structure needs to be adjusted, but not replaced. As a product of public education, I can honestly say that my experience with the public education system have been fruitful and there is no way that someone can point out the main reason why public education isn’t working because it is incredibly complex and there are many different reasons that build up to the dwindling school system. The only way to truly fix our system is to invest in infrastructure, to invest in the education of our children, future and current.
My questions: Do teacher unions play a crucial part in our lacking educational system? Do you think that they are blocking progression?
(Picture source: http://www.gscdn.org/library/cms/29/17429.jpg)