By lowering the standards of education, teachers are allowing students to reach the bare minimum requirements to pass each grade level, which does not allow them to be prepared for life, let alone college. Jerry Jesness, an educator and consultant in the ESL profession, wrote about this issue in his article “Why Johnny Can’t Fail”. Jesness called this situation the “floating standard,” where teachers submit to the complaints of parents and teachers (41-42). Teachers, who should be holding students to high standards so they can reach their potential, are unable to uphold this expectation since they received negative comments from parents that the teachers are too harsh on the students, yet ironically, parents wants their students to learn the best to succeed in life. That does not make sense to me at all. Of course, others might say that this is not the teacher’s fault but the parent’s instead. To that, I would reply, “Well, why aren’t the teachers doing more to prevent it, such as publicizing this situation, instead of readily surrendering to the pressure?” I once had an English teacher, who at first seemed ready to make her students reach their potential, but after many students complained to her for being too hard and parents calling in, she became more relaxed on grading and barely cared about teac...
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...ur children, our nation, will be a struggling journey. As long as teachers are able to change their ways, we can still turn this around, but if not, then we can say ‘goodbye’ to that hope, and ‘hello’ to a bleak future.
Goldstein, Dana. "Grading Waiting for Superman." Nation Oct. 2010: 20-23. Academic
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Jesness, Jerry. "Why Johnny Can't Fail." Reason July 1999: 40-45. Academic Search Premier. Web. 10 Nov. 2013.
Kohn, Alfie. "The Case Against GRADES." Educational Leadership 69.3 (2011): 28-33.
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Waiting for 'Superman'. Dir. Davis Guggenheim. Paramount Vantage, 2010. DVD.
Williams, Bronwyn T. "Standardized students: The problems with writing for tests instead of
people." Journal Of Adolescent & Adult Literacy 49.2 (2005): 152-158. Academic Search Premier. Web. 10 Nov. 2013.
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