Marlena Oregon

The problems of our Education System

I discuss the issues that face all schools from elementary to college. It has facts and personal experience/views. It also has a few ideas on ways you could help the school systems become better.

Dear next President,

In my experience school has been less than what I feel I need. School, from elementary to high school, it has been less than what it was made to be. Every year I heard “It’ll be better next year”. I feel like I shouldn’t hear that ever. The graduation rates are far less than others, according to we have a graduation rate of 77.5% and that's not enough if you supposedly want our country to be number one, Germany, Finland, Greece, and Japan are the top 4 countries when it comes to graduation.

The point is that our education system needs to change. Let’s start at middle school; a place where most start their more important part of life, finding themselves. I was overwhelmed with trying to keep my grades high and understand the material that wasn’t being explained the way I needed it. Classes were unproductive. My social life was even less, because of school and stress I didn’t have friends. Now this isn’t a sob story, it’s an example. My self confidence was almost nonexistent, and since most were in the same position we all went to highschool a mess.

I started high school and certain classes were too easy, others I didn’t understand. We are expected to show up early and do work while we are sleepy. I personally don’t like waking up when it’s still dark out. The food we eat is also not the best, in nutritional ways, let alone it being tasty. All the students are supposed to do the same as the others in every class even if someone excels in one subject and needs help in another. The way that high schools work now are less than the should be or could be.

Now for college. Not to mention the amount of people who don’t go on to college from high school, there is the ridiculous cost of college. The College Board reports that, the average cost of one years tuition without living costs for public two year colleges is $3,347 and for private nonprofit four year colleges it is $32,405. A decade ago it was $2,665 for two year public colleges, and $25,624 for private nonprofit colleges. For only 10 years that’s a big difference, and that’s ONLY the price of tuition, there is also living costs such as dorm room, and food. In order to pay for it we have to work, or get a scholarship. This has also became more over the years, sure minimum wage has gone up, but the price of college more so, the costs and the minimum wage don’t correspond. When you think about it it is hard to be a full time student and work full time, because no part time job will pay enough, and then you have consider their social lives.

That is just skimming the surface of the education system. There is homework which does nothing but take up time, and create stress. Then there is standardized testing, which is unfair for most. It’s like asking a fish and a monkey to climb a tree, and then come back down, it’s easy for the monkey, but impossible for the fish, and then the fish thinks it’s stupid because it can’t climb the tree. I am a good student, i have straight A’s, but even for me the PSAT’s were hard, and confusing. If this doesn't shine some light on the issue then look at the statistics, graduation rates, college tuition, how does standardized testing actually help, and so on. You’ll find that our schools, and our education system needs to change.

The hope for schools is that there is a lessened load of stress, and pressure. Stress doesn’t just come from financials, it comes from the pressure to get absolute A’s and finish everything in time with quality. Politicians can make education better by providing more for them, by changing policies. Recently the news showed that a lunch lady in Pennsylvania quit her job because of the way that the school humiliated the kids by taking away their hot lunches, because the kids parents couldn’t pay for the lunch. There is also the quality of the free and reduced lunches, we should be taught to cook, and how to eat healthy. Politicians shouldn’t just give the schools a budget for every student, they should support our learning and our health, mental and physical. Politicians can help educate the future, and help make the future a better place. 

                                                                 Sincerely, Marlena

Jefferson HS

Jefferson HS Students

10th,11th, and 12th grade students at Jefferson HS in Portland Oregon.

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