Monday, April 01, 2019

Civics, Who Needs It?

     Not Indiana high school graduates, I guess.  The state legislature had considered adding the test required of prospective U. S. citizens as a requirement to graduate high school, but decided not to because it would be too much of a burden on the schools.

     That's right, turning out graduates with the basic knowledge required to become a naturalized U. S. citizen is too much to ask of our high schools.

     And yes, they'll be voting.


FrankC said...

I've tried the citizenship test here in the U.K. and failed spectacularly.
Grouch Marx had it right - don't join a club that allows you in.

pigpen51 said...

And so we end up with our colleges teaching the things that our high schools used to teach. And then wonder why our college costs continue to rise, and it takes 5 years to earn a 4 year degree.
We seem to be teaching to the least common denominator in student intelligence, instead of teaching to an average of their intelligence. I don't know if that is a very real idea or useful one, but I understand what I mean. We can't always wait until each and every student in class has a firm grasp of each concept, if we want to ensure that every other student is able to gain a grasp on the major concepts that they need to continue onto the next grade.
I know that for myself, I never seem to remember having to study much, but I always somehow was able to keep up, and maintain a B average. My secret was an exceptional memory. So I would take notes in class, and then I would remember what I wrote down, never again referring to them. I could not read them anyway, my hand writing to this day is horrific.
I do know that the girl, rather, woman, who was valedictorian in our class studied all the time, and the one time she got a B on a paper, cried about it all afternoon. She was a very sweet girl, and well liked, but just had a drive to excel.
My parents did not force or push our family of 5 kids to get all A's on our report cards, but rather they simply encouraged us to do the best that we could do. A solid C obtained with maximum effort was celebrated just as much as an A gotten with no effort at all. I know that in many homes, no encouragement or observation of the kids schooling is made at all. That is perhaps the biggest factor in success or failure, not the school or their methods.

Roberta X said...

FrankC, if I had to know the full depth and breadth of UK history -- how Henry V got rid of his wives, that 1066 thing and the trouble King John got into, not to mention the troublesome Mr. Cromwell -- and the rules for cricket, I'd fail, too, long before we reached the silly mid off or why the Queen has to ask permission to Parliament's Tea Interval or whatever it is. ;)

Pigpen51, point me to a U. S. college with a Civics class -- extra points if it's not based on Howard Zinn's take on U. S. history.

pigpen51 said...

I know that few colleges are concerned with civics today. But perhaps Hillsdale college might have one. It might not be labeled as such, but they have many classes which are related to the theme.
I doubt that it is at all related to Howard Zinn's thoughts. And it is a very conservative school, of course. I just took a look at their website, for fun, and their cost for a resident, full time student, for one year, is a little over 38,000$. They said that most of their students get financial aid, although not from the government, since they don't accept money from the federal or state government to maintain their independence. They instead have donors from hundreds of thousands of supporters nationwide.
The average financial aid package given in 2015 was 16,700$, so that is quite a large amount given, and if a student could get a few private scholarships, they could probably do quite well at financing their college costs.
But again, Hillsdale is a very conservative school. It would lead you to a career in a lot of conservative professions, as it is well respected in that area, but in more liberal fields, it might be a red mark against you, even though it is a liberal arts school.