A Mind Is A Terrible Thing To Waste …

Woe the poor high school senior living in the U.S. who, looking forward to graduation in May or June, already accepted to the college of her choice, is now told that the schools are closed for the rest of the year and her plans will have to be scrapped.  She will likely have to repeat her entire senior year next year, or perhaps even the year after, since the U.S. seems intent on scrapping life in general for the rest of this calendar year.

First, let me assure you that I’m not necessarily arguing against the closing of the schools.  We must protect our young people as best we can.  What I’m arguing is that there appears to be absolutely zero amount of planning for the education of our youth … it seems that nobody is considering alternate means for these young people to complete the school year that they have already spent 6 months of their lives on.  Where is the common sense???  Must we keep throwing out the baby with the bathwater?  Does nobody in our government think any more?  Just because we have a fool in the White House shouldn’t preclude other elected officials from using their brains for something other than holding their skulls in place.

Once again, state governors have shown their immense capacity for willful ignorance by closing schools through the end of the school year, despite the fact that it is only March, and with callous disregard for both students and parents.

“The governor told California parents the SAT and other standardized testing would be canceled and the state would help with supplies to homeschool.”

Say WHAT???  The entire SAT is cancelled?  Whose brilliant idea was that?  So, even students who technically completed their course work at mid-term will not be able to take the SAT in order to enter college in the fall?  What would you do if you were a student in that situation?  I think many will say, “Screw this, I’ll just go work for the sanitation department,” else “I’ll just kill myself now.” I don’t suppose it occurred to the dolts in the Department of Education that the SAT could, with appropriate safeguards, be administered online???

And “the state would help with supplies to homeschool”?  So what?  Most parents whose children are beyond about 5th or 6th grade are not going to be able to homeschool their children in many subjects.  Only those with advanced degrees plus the time and patience will be able to do so … likely about 10% of the population.

Common sense is seriously lacking in the United States today.  Now, if the states thought shuttering the schools for the next 6 months was such a brilliant move, then they could have had teachers teach their classes online, from the comfort of their own homes, in their jammies if they wished.  Students without access to a computer, modem or WiFi, could have been provided one at no cost by the Department of Education.  Without the distractions, perhaps they would have learned even better, but noooooo … it would have required thought processes that no government official today seems capable of.

The quality of education in the United States had hit an all-time low, even before this.  We no longer teach young people that wonderful art of thinking, but rather teach them technical skills.  We teach little about history, literature, and how governments function, but rather how to program in C++, or how to build furniture.  And now … we teach … nothing.  For at least the foreseeable future, we teach nothing.  Way. To. Go.

To reiterate, just so nobody misunderstands my point as happened in a post last week:  I am not arguing against the schools being closed if that is what the medical community believe is the best way to save lives.  The medical community, not public officials who are sans common sense in the midst of this pandemic.  My point, however, is you don’t just shutter the schools for the next six months without a backup plan to ensure these young people are able to complete this school year.  I, who am not even an educator, can think of a number of ways this could be done, but nobody … not a single person … in our federal or state governments has even bothered to try.  I want our Department of Education employees to get off their arses and earn the money We the People are paying them!  Yo … Betsy DeVos … are you listening?  It’s your turn to earn your keep!

34 thoughts on “A Mind Is A Terrible Thing To Waste …

  1. Pingback: Re-blog Needs Re-Reading | NANMYKEL.COM

  2. I shall mark this day on my calendar!!! Jokes aside, I can only imagine how much more difficult it is for you than for most parents, but as I’ve said before, I really admire that you don’t let a little thing like blindness stop you from being a hands-on great dad! It seems that some states put a lot of thought into how to proceed so that the students’ education would see the least amount of disruption, while others have no clue what they are doing. Yes, this is a serious disease and we must take precautions, but at the end of the day, our children must be educated! Some parents are very much up to the task of taking over for the remaining 3 months of the school year, others wouldn’t know where to start. And what arrangements for them to be tested for moving into the next grade in September. Sigh … yes, this country is indeed unbalanced and unprepared. My children are grown, and even my granddaughter is 25, thankfully. I’m okay, my friend. Big hugs!

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  3. I just assumed schools would finish the year using an online format. I had not heard about students having to repeat their senior year – that seems crazy. I hope it does not come to that. What impact would that have on colleges if there were no new students in the Fall?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Each state is different. Sounds like New Hampshire got their act together quickly, but other states seem to have no plan whatsoever. And where is our Department of Education during all this? Remarkably silent/absent.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Betsy DeVos? She is no leader of the Department of Education, she is doing all the can to destroy the public school system in favor of her Christian buddies who all want to take over our schools and train our kids to be good neomaxi, zoom dweebies.

        They actually did this to our school system when the local Catholic churches had to close down and their Catholic schools too because they had to sell everything thanks to two of their priests being outrageous pedos to the local kids. And? They did in fact? Invade our school and changed things, for a while. My adopted daughter told me about the history classes she had there and in no way? Would they EVER be called true history classes. They were classes on the history of the buybull and Christianity. And that dropped our school system to last place in the state. But? We fought them and took that back and iniated changes to make it not happen again. Even the teachers were getting sick and tired of being forced to teach biblical history and Christian history over real history.

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  4. As one who has a Senior in the house I can relate! He is taking it in stride but it still is stressful! Fortunately he has his AP classes online, which are the most important ones. I know a lot of schools are doing online but a lot aren’t either. He has a friend whose school has already cancelled the rest of.the year and just told the Seniors to consider themselves gradudated!! Its crazy times for sure. I am not afraid of him not graduating BUT and I know this seems small in comparison, but I want to see him walk across the stage! Its a once in a lifetime thing. He’s my baby, its the sentimental part of being a Mom!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I can only imagine! There are so many aspects that state governments failed to consider and in some states, it seems that absolutely no planning whatsoever went into the decision. I’m still fuming over the canceled primary in my own state … a draconian measure that robbed us of our constitutional right to participate in our government! And telling seniors to consider themselves graduated??? What about those who wouldn’t pass? What about the SATs??? Are they just going to unleash thousands of kids into the college system who may or may not be ready for it? Yeah, I understand wanting to see him in cap ‘n gown, receiving that diploma. Sigh. Will life ever be ‘normal’ again? I ordered my insulin two weeks ago, and received a call today that there is a delay because they’re having trouble getting it from the manufacturer. Wouldn’t you think somebody would make that a priority???

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  5. As I understand it, many colleges and universities are finishing up on-line. This is stop-gap to be sure, but it may be the best we can expect under the circumstances. I think it is a bit of an overstatement to say that no thought whatever has been given to the education of the young during this pandemic. But the larger question remains: when we will wake up to the fact that our education system is seriously flawed even when there is no pandemic to blame it on?

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  6. Yeah we fought all this. The biggest reason this happened in my area? Well it is kind of sick, twisted and foul.

    This was basically? A Roman Catholic mini-state. We had 14 Roman Catholic churches and 4 Roman Catholic schools here, besides the Public schools.

    Well? You all know the story of some of these perverted priests. Two priests had been found? To have raped over 400 of the local children. Sad thing is? EVERYONE IN THIS TOWN? KNEW THAT THIS WAS HAPPENING AND OF COURSE? THEY ALL TURNED A BLIND EYE AND A DEAF EAR TO IT.

    Eventually the priests got busted and the lawsuits literally bankrupted the local RCC community. They are only left with two churches and all their schools had to close down to get the funds to pay the victims.

    So? They then? Invaded our public school system and literally took them over. And changed EVERYTHING.

    So, we fought them on all this. And? We came under vile, viscious attacks by the Roman Catholics for doing so and? It changed absolutely nothing. We could not even get a lawyer to sue them over it because? First the RCC contacted ALL the lawyers throughout the state and did a little legal business with them. This essentially? Blocked us from using ANY of them due to “conflict of interest” Once the RCC used the lawyer, even if it was just to sign a legal paper? That essentially blocked us from using them.

    And? This is how they play.

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  7. Here in England the final grades for this year will be based on tests already taken, course work, and the teacher’s assessment. Not perfect but students will be able to graduate and move on to university. Meanwhile education is continuing online.
    Not too bad considering 🌹❤

    Liked by 1 person

  8. In Canada all Grade 12 high school students will graduate based on marks earned at the date of school closures. Any student who falls short of passing grade at time of school closures will graduate with conditional grades on their diploma. Bottom line – everyone graduates.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Here in Southwest Virginia the schools are setting up digital classes. The students and teachers will continue their work from their homes. The SAT is an issue that needs to be resolved, quickly. A lot of colleges are closed as well, so it’s unknown whether there will be a fall semester, or a repeat of this spring semester. Interesting times!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Interesting times, indeed! I wonder if … someday we’ll look back on this and laugh? I doubt it. Where in Southwest Virginia are you? I only ask because I spent the 15 years of my married life in Wise County!

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  10. There was enough health experts arguing for school closures that it was in the end the only option. They only stayed open so long on logistical grounds. Here they are still working out the details but exams assessment will be replaced by course work and school assessment. Whatever we do we have to make sure the kids are not penalised. If that means give them the option to complete in a few months, then give them that option at the governments expense.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, I have to agree that it is the right thing to do, but not as we are doing it in most states in this country, with no forethought, no planning, no consideration for the lives affected. But then, in the U.S., I believe there is more here than meets the eye. I hope that somehow this works out for the best for your son … I think it just might.

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  11. I cannot find anything to disagree with you about in the whole of this post, until ‘Yo…Betsy DeVos’. Besty DeVos is neither up to the tasks that are hers by virtue of the position, nor was she the qualified person for the job to begin with. If the education of the country’s children rests upon some brilliance from her, they are in deeper trouble than they were before this pandemic! Thank-you!

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    • Oh, I know she is not fit for the duty at hand, but it was mostly a way of pointing that out to her and to those who might actually view her as a legitimate Secretary of Education, which she is not. She got her job only because of the amount of money her family donated to Trump’s campaign in 2016, and she is as stupid as they come. Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr. Right now, I’d say if we don’t do a major housecleaning in November, the youth of this nation are definitely doomed. Sigh.

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  12. I wonder if this is not a moot point, Trump and his little gang and where would he be without Fox have decided that the economical health of the country takes precedence over the dangers of Coronavirus and so they should call for an early return to work.Possibly in April. That of course would likely mean that schools would have to reopen to allow working mothers to return to work. One ‘Bright’ Bimbo from Fox says the economy should call the return to work and not the Coronavirus. Unfortunately if it’s nor all gone I can see children getting ill from it with some inevitable deaths but I can see more teachers suffering. Settle for education at home and leave parents be a while longer until the risks are less.
    Cwtch

    Liked by 3 people

    • This is just insanely disgusting. It is like the Republicans and Trump and Fox? Wants this spread around. I have read comments from Trumpsters who state? They are going to purposefully spread this to “demoncrats and libertards” and? Even law enforcement and Jews. The FBI was already warning about this.

      And now? Thanks to Trumps racist comments on the “China Virus”? Oriental people in the US? Are coming under evil attacks by people.

      Our country? Is screwed blued and tattoed as long as Traitor Trump and Repugnants actually control things and I think this is exactly what they want.

      Liked by 2 people

      • I had not heard that there were trumpeters saying they would purposely spread this to democrats! I will check into it tomorrow, but you’re right, that is filthy, disgusting, and inhumane.

        You’re right … Trump continually referring to it as the China virus is racist and is stirring tensions among the Asian-American communities here. The best thing everyone, especially the media, could do is to simply ignore him, not make a big deal of it. Every time someone criticizes him for it, he is more determined than ever to say it, for it has gotten him attention, and it is attention, whether positive or negative, that he craves.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Well, in some instances you’re right, but at least three states have already mandated that the schools will remain closed for the rest of the academic year, and it isn’t within Trump’s power/authority to override that. Frankly, I don’t think Trump will get his way on forcing companies to re-open in April, unless it is deemed safe by the medicos. However, it appears that Dr. Fauci has fallen out of favour after contradicting Trump’s fantasies with actual facts more than a few times, and he may be on the way out. Then, if Trump calls to the fore a hand-picked “expert” who agrees with him … who knows??? All bets are off, at that point. The CEOs and business owners, who wouldn’t be connecting with we the masses, would be happy enough to re-open their businesses to avoid further revenue losses, and the working people would really, at that point, have no choice unless they wished to lose their jobs altogether. This country is so royally screwed up right now that I cannot even hazard a guess as to what the next two weeks will bring, other than to say it will bring grief to many. I know that much factual information is being withheld from us, and I know that there are some highly foolish, ignorant people running the show, and some even more ignorant people cheering them on. Were the borders not closed, I would seriously be considering taking my family and moving either to Canada or Mexico. Sigh.
      Cwtch

      Liked by 1 person

  13. California should look to my state NH. Yes they closed down the schools, but? Teachers? Spent the first week of the shutdown? To start their educating students via web. They gave all students in our state? Chromebooks and? Starting next week? School resumes at homes, with the kids sitting in front of their puters while the teachers teaches them and gives them their regular school subjects. About the only one they cannot compensate for is like gym and the schools that have classes in welding, auto repair or construction cause you really cannot do those things on the puter.

    Seniors? Are still going to be able to take their SAT’s too from what I understand.Our state has really stepped up and did what they needed to to get this done.

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      • It was amazing. I live right next door to the Middle School. For the first week? The teachers were there every day being instructed on how they were going to do this and come up with an educational plan. Each and every kid got a Chromebook, they did place certain limits on the use by programs on those books, ie…they can’t visit a porn site or even Facebook, it is to be used for their school work only and that is the way they set them up.

        The kids are in essence? Literally back in school, but being in a sense home schooled by our teachers.

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  14. The other side on non-graduating students is no freshman in college or university next year. How many professors are going to sit idle while the schools repeat a grade?

    I agree that schools have to be closed phtsically to help stop the spread of the corona virus, but somehow that must be transitioned into continued learning.

    Meanwhile, this is exactly what DeVos wants. No poor people educated to rise up in the ranks. Poor people should be labourers and wealthy ones should manage. No more class movement, if you get my drift…

    Liked by 2 people

    • You know what … I hadn’t even thought about that, but you’re right! No Freshman students next year. Sigh … is this not the stupidest nation on earth???

      Yep, this plays right into not only DeVos’ hand, but those of the rich capitalists who prefer to keep higher education for their own and relegate the rest of us into the blue collar jobs … forever. I want out of this country so badly …

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      • Unfortunately, we cannot afford to leave. In fact, they won’t let us leave right now, because no one else wants what we might have, including our home nations.
        I bought a few lottery tickets, hoping to win passage for New Zealand, but no such luck. Now even that is impossible.

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      • Trump and the Republicans know? The people who actually believe their BS and vote for them? Are uneducated people for the MOST PART. If you look at the majority of these Republican controlled states? They literally destroy real education, often putting mostly a Christian slant on their educational systems. Bible study, prayer, abstinence only sex education, in history classes? They learn the history of their bible and their Christianity, not what we were actually taught in history class.

        I live in the north and after talking to my daughter? I was shocked. Now, I adopted her, so I was not there for most of her education. But once she started telling me what she was taught? I was FURIOUS. She knows NOTHING about the Civil War, WWI or WWII or the Korean conflict of the Vietnam war. She knows NOTHING about how our country was actually founded. She did not even know anything about the Kennedy assasinations, Kent State, not much on Martin Luther King Jr, or the assassinations of Malcolm X and others. She knows NOTHING about Watergate. Pretty much? She and her fellow students? Learned absolutely NOTHING about true history. What did they learn? The history of the bible and Christianity. They literally got away with this up here by proclaiming they are not indoctrinating or pushing Christianity on them, they are just teaching them the history of it and get away with it claiming this is what history lessons are about. NO they are not. True lessons in history is not the bible and Christianity, it is real history of world events.

        We fought this too. We said this is why our school system is now ranked last in our state. Most of our kids cannot even come close to passing their SAT’s because they were not taught what they were supposed to be taught.

        But? This is what DeVos, the Repugnants and Trump actually want. And so do the ChristoFascists who have been constantly invading our public school systems to force their Christian bs into them.

        Again, they know, their base? Is mostly? Sad to say? Ignorant and uneducated and those people Are damn proud of that fact. They believe actually? Education is evil and that real educated people? Are the ones who should be put out of business.

        Sad huh? They are purposefully dumbing down people through forced educational Christian programs because they know? A uneducated person is more going to believe their lies, their BS and vote for them.

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  15. Jill, I completely agree with you on this. being a stay-at-home dad, and one who is blind no less, it’s challenging for me to ensure that the kids are doing what they are supposed to do on their tablets because, not every module has sound with it so I can hear whether they’re screwing off or not.
    I try to help where I can but I feel quite useless since my wife has to sit with them to make sure they’re doing what they’re supposed to do and then work her job where the hours have changed and she’s not a night owl.
    My guess is that the super intendents, and other state officials who make these decisions about school closings aren’t getting their information from medical experts but from statistics, perhaps from the media who we all know exaggerate everything for ratings, sensationalism and profit. Now, I’m not one to downplay this issue but there has to be a balance and, as a society, we are very unbalanced as you well know.

    Someone I follow on twitter said that she applauds the school closings and I replied to her “isn’t it interesting that people who are applauding the school closures seem to be people who don’t have children”, snarky? probably, meant seriously? Maybe towards her as it’s people like that who don’t consider the other side of the equation.

    You’re not in that category obviously, I know you have children and like you, I believe we need to protect them. Like I said above, balance people, where’s the balance?

    what do you say?

    I hope you’re doing as well as you can. hugs.

    Liked by 2 people

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