Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.
 

school budget: "preparing...for global society" vs college prep

Expand Messages
  • Catherine Johnson
    Hi Bob & all - Looking at my copy of the ³Push-Ahead Budget,² I see Goal 2: ======================================= The Challenge: World Class Schools:
    Message 1 of 4 , Jan 28, 2012
    school budget: "preparing...for global society" vs college prep
    Hi Bob & all -

    Looking at my copy of the “Push-Ahead Budget,” I see Goal 2:

    =======================================

    The Challenge:
    World Class Schools: Preparing Students for a Global Society
    International Comparisons of Student Achievement

    =======================================

    I’m thrilled to see the reference to International Comparisons (!)

    At the same time, however, I’m concerned to see our central challenge framed as “Preparing Students for a Global Society.” I would dearly love to see that goal revised to read: “Preparing Students for a Selective College or University.”

    Having just been through the college admissions process with our son, Ed and I are keenly aware of what exactly life in a “Global Society” actually means for a 16-year old and his parents: it means intense competition for admissions to — and merit aid from — selective colleges and universities.

    Every college admissions officer today boasts about the number of international students in attendance. As I recall, the Binghamton tour guide told us there are students from 26 countries currently attending Binghamton. Each one of those prized international students has taken a seat that would have been filled by an American student just a decade ago.

    The competition from international students is getting worse, not better. A friend of mine, whose wife is Chinese, says that his wife’s relatives actually have ‘back-up’ countries in the college admissions sweepstakes. Their first choice is a college or university in the U.S., second choice a college or university in Australia.

    Ed is hearing the same from NYU administrators working at the new NYU campus in Shanghai. Educated families there are intensely focused on getting their kids into American colleges and universities.

    This is what our kids are up against. India and China simply do not have enough university seats for the number of high-achieving students their K-12 schools are producing.

    And many of these kids are very well-prepared for college-level work:

    Squeezed Out in India, Students Turn to U.S.
    By NIDA NAJAR
    Published: October 13, 2011
    NEW DELHI — Moulshri Mohan was an excellent student at one of the top private high schools in New Delhi. When she applied to colleges, she received scholarship offers of $20,000 from Dartmouth and $15,000 from Smith. Her pile of acceptance letters would have made any ambitious teenager smile: Cornell, Bryn Mawr, Duke, Wesleyan, Barnard and the University of Virginia.

    But because of her 93.5 percent cumulative score on her final high school examinations, which are the sole criteria for admission to most colleges here, Ms. Mohan was rejected by the top colleges at Delhi University, better known as D.U., her family’s first choice and one of India’s top schools.

    “Daughter now enrolled at Dartmouth!” her mother, Madhavi Chandra, wrote, updating her Facebook page. “Strange swings this admission season has shown us. Can’t get into DU, can make it to the Ivies.”

    Ms. Mohan, 18, is now one of a surging number of Indian students attending American colleges and universities, as competition in India has grown formidable, even for the best students. With about half of India’s 1.2 billion people under the age of 25, and with the ranks of the middle class swelling, the country’s handful of highly selective universities are overwhelmed.


    Note that Brown University is actually recruiting in India:

    “We’re accepting an increasing number of students, and they’re excellent,” said Matthew Gutmann, the vice president for international affairs at Brown University, which plans to open an office in New Delhi partly dedicated to recruiting students. Undergraduate applications from India have grown from 86 in 2008 to more than 300 for this academic year at Brown.
    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/14/world/asia/squeezed-out-in-india-students-turn-to-united-states.html?pagewanted=all


    Here in Irvington, college preparation has to be front and center. Our previous administration explicitly refused to make college readiness a goal, citing “global awareness,” “global responsibility,” and “21st century skills” as the priorities instead (2008 Strategic Plan).

    We need to move past those years to create a district that takes achievement gaps seriously: not just the gap between suburban kids and disadvantaged students attending urban and rural schools, but also the gap between high-SES kids and their peers in Europe, Asia, and Canada.

    That means focusing squarely and forthrightly on college readiness — and I deeply hope we can do that!

    Thanks so much -

    Catherine

    =============

    The Global Report Card:
    http://globalreportcard.org/

    Irvington student achievement compared to 34 countries:
    Math 69%
    Reading 83%
    (Our students rank at the 69th percentile in math internationally, 83rd percentile in reading. Important: Irvington students are being compared to **all** students inside these countries, not to their same-SES peers.)

    Irvington student achievement compared to Canada:
    Math 64%
    Reading 78%

    Irvington student achievement compared to Singapore:
    Math 49%
    Reading 77%

    For a 16-year old student headed to college, life inside the “global society” means intense competition from well-educated international students for admission to selective American colleges and universities.


  • Stephanie Plaut
    My own alma mater, Bryn Mawr, also happily and proudly touts the very large percentage of foreign students now in attendance (27% of the Class of 2014). In
    Message 2 of 4 , Jan 29, 2012
      My own alma mater, Bryn Mawr, also happily and proudly touts the very large percentage of foreign students now in attendance (27% of the Class of 2014). In fact, it is one of the purported selling points of the College since it screams diversity and globalization. Aside from the intellectual benefits of these two characteristics, there is a real hard economic truth for colleges and universities: simply that foreign students tend to fully pay their way. (One source states that 60% of foreign students pay their own way and another 10% receive funding from outside the US.) No need for student loans. That accepted foreign student is coming to your campus if they choose you because economic factors aren't going to force their hand. This is too tantalizing a population and, I believe, spells disaster for American students and their college acceptances, beyond whatever academic failings we can debate our educational system currently possesses. I congratulate the President for any steps that can be taken to help stem the tide of spiraling college costs (this week's speech at UMich) but I also wonder what can be done to avoid having our students squeezed out of higher education by equally qualified foreign students with deep pockets. Ideas that don't sound xenophobic, anyone? Oh, one more thing, the influx of foreign students is growing more at the undergraduate than graduate level.

      Stephanie

      Sent from my iPad
    • Catherine Johnson
      ... Bryn Mawr - Re: school budget: global society vs college prep On 1/29/12 11:13 AM, Stephanie Plaut wrote: My own alma mater, Bryn
      Message 3 of 4 , Feb 9, 2012
        Bryn Mawr - Re: school budget: "global society" vs college prep


        On 1/29/12 11:13 AM, "Stephanie Plaut" <sjplaut@...> wrote:     

        My own alma mater, Bryn Mawr, also happily and proudly touts the very large percentage of foreign students now in attendance (27% of the Class of 2014).  In fact, it is one of the purported selling points of the College since it screams diversity and globalization.  Aside from the intellectual benefits of these two characteristics, there is a real hard economic truth for colleges and universities:  simply that foreign students tend to fully pay their way.  (One source states that 60% of foreign students pay their own way and another 10% receive funding from outside the US.)  No need for student loans.  That accepted foreign student is coming to your campus if they choose you because economic factors aren't going to force their hand.  This is too tantalizing a population and, I believe, spells disaster for American students and their college acceptances, beyond whatever academic failings we can debate our educational system currently possesses.  I congratulate the President for any steps that can be taken to help stem the tide of spiraling college costs (this week's speech at UMich)  but I also wonder what can be done to avoid having our students squeezed out of higher education by equally qualified foreign students with deep pockets.  Ideas that don't sound xenophobic, anyone?  Oh, one more thing, the influx of foreign students is growing more at the undergraduate than graduate level.  

        Stephanie

        Sent from my iPad
         
           

        Hey Stephanie – You stole my thunder! The very next post I was going to write was about Bryn Mawr. We have a family member who works there. He says 12% of the Bryn Mawr student body is from China. Twelve percent! He also said Chinese students are pretty much keeping Bryn Mawr afloat.



        <<This is too tantalizing a population and, I believe, spells disaster for American students and their college acceptances, beyond whatever academic failings we can debate our educational system currently possesses.>>


        Absolutely.

        People keep writing about a higher education ‘bubble’ ... but I just don’t see it bursting any time soon (not that I know, of course). It looks to me as if college prices can continue to rise as long as the number of full-fare foreign students continues to rise, and I don’t see that number leveling off in the near future ---- (?)




        <<I also wonder what can be done to avoid having our students squeezed out of higher education by equally qualified foreign students with deep pockets.  Ideas that don't sound xenophobic, anyone?>>

        The ONLY thing that can be done is to bring our schools to the level of their peer schools in Europe, Asia, and Canada. Our kids have to be competitive with their international peers. It’s that simple.

        In terms of math, that means adopting Singapore math – AND teaching Singapore Math as it’s intended to be taught, not as a ‘hands-on,’ getting-the-right-answer-doesn’t-matter, Americanized version of Singapore Math.

        In terms of reading, it means adopting a rigorous, “scientifically based reading research curriculum” and abandoning Fountas and Pinnell. I would get rid of Lucy Calkins at the middle school, too, unless the middle school can show real results.

        In terms of K-8 curriculum, I think the best move we can possibly make would be to adopt Core Knowledge — which happens to be free. The Core Knowledge Foundation is actually giving away its scope and sequence, or trying to.

        That’s curriculum. In terms of teaching, the district needs to become ‘data-driven’ (sorry for all the jargon!). We can’t just keep putting out 5-page powerpoints each year showing that, on average, our kids passed the state tests again. Averages don’t tell the story. Each INDIVIDUAL child needs to make at least 1 year’s progress for that child in 1 year’s time, and for Irvington kids that will mean that they need to continue to be as advanced every year throughout their schooling as so many of them are when they first enter school. e.g.: A child who enters 3rd grade reading a year ahead of grade level should still be reading at least 1 year ahead of grade level when he enters 4th grade.

        All this can be done if district leadership has the will ---- !

        The fact is: our kids are in fierce & rising competition with very well-educated and/or very well-heeled international students for a finite number of spots at good colleges and universities. That’s just the way it is, and we can’t expect it to change any time soon.

        I would like to see our district respond to the reality our children face.

        So, for every reason in the book, I think it’s essential for our district to make college readiness a specific, publicly stated, fully acted upon goal.

        Catherine

      • Catherine
        Hi again - Just saw this at the Cost of College blog, which is written by a parent in Eastchester: The goal for America s educational system is clear: Every
        Message 4 of 4 , Feb 9, 2012
          Hi again -

          Just saw this at the Cost of College blog, which is written by a parent in Eastchester:

          "The goal for America's educational system is clear: Every student should graduate from high school ready for college or a career." (President Obama)

          Eastchester has just adopted graduation goals:

          A graduate of the Eastchester Schools will be:

          * A respectful individual
          * A life-long learner
          * An effective communicator
          * A complex thinker and problem solver
          * A competent and responsible user of technology


          College readiness didn't make the list.

          Catherine

          http://costofcollege.wordpress.com/2012/02/07/high-school-graduation-goals-do-not-include-being-ready-for-college-or-career/

          --- In irvingtonparentsforum@yahoogroups.com, Catherine Johnson <cijohn@...> wrote:
          >
          >
          >
          >
          > On 1/29/12 11:13 AM, "Stephanie Plaut" <sjplaut@...> wrote:
          > >
          > > My own alma mater, Bryn Mawr, also happily and proudly touts the very large
          > > percentage of foreign students now in attendance (27% of the Class of 2014).
          > > In fact, it is one of the purported selling points of the College since it
          > > screams diversity and globalization. Aside from the intellectual benefits of
          > > these two characteristics, there is a real hard economic truth for colleges
          > > and universities: simply that foreign students tend to fully pay their way.
          > > (One source states that 60% of foreign students pay their own way and another
          > > 10% receive funding from outside the US.) No need for student loans. That
          > > accepted foreign student is coming to your campus if they choose you because
          > > economic factors aren't going to force their hand. This is too tantalizing a
          > > population and, I believe, spells disaster for American students and their
          > > college acceptances, beyond whatever academic failings we can debate our
          > > educational system currently possesses. I congratulate the President for any
          > > steps that can be taken to help stem the tide of spiraling college costs (this
          > > week's speech at UMich) but I also wonder what can be done to avoid having
          > > our students squeezed out of higher education by equally qualified foreign
          > > students with deep pockets. Ideas that don't sound xenophobic, anyone? Oh,
          > > one more thing, the influx of foreign students is growing more at the
          > > undergraduate than graduate level.
          > >
          > > Stephanie
          > >
          > > Sent from my iPad
          > >
          > >
          > >
          > > Hey Stephanie ­ You stole my thunder! The very next post I was going to write
          > > was about Bryn Mawr. We have a family member who works there. He says 12% of
          > > the Bryn Mawr student body is from China. Twelve percent! He also said Chinese
          > > students are pretty much keeping Bryn Mawr afloat.
          > >
          > >
          > >
          > > <<This is too tantalizing a population and, I believe, spells disaster for
          > > American students and their college acceptances, beyond whatever academic
          > > failings we can debate our educational system currently possesses.>>
          > >
          > >
          > > Absolutely.
          > >
        Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.