Abby M. Mississippi

No Child Left Behind

Problems with our educational system and treatment of students

        To the Leader of Our Nation,

      For as long as I can remember, our governments have talked about change and making the world better and more advanced. Everything has been modernized except one thing: our education system. In 1873, the school system was created. Looking at the school environment now and then, yes, many things have changed, but the basics are still the same. Students are herded from room to room where they are taught the same levels of the simple subjects the same way. Yet we wonder why the same groups of students are excelling and the same groups are failing.

      Ever since I was a little girl I worked hard at school and most of the time I did well. I knew the information required and I did my work. I was just fine sitting in the same place doing the same thing over and over for months. However, my brother is very different. He is street smart and has skills I will never have, but he simply isn’t good at school. His teachers didn’t care and used to say he wasn’t trying. They said it was all up to him and they couldn’t do anything for him. Most days he sat in a desk in the corner of the room, where the teacher put him, struggling all by himself. Eventually he stopped asking for help and stopped caring. He moved up to the next grade level due to the “no child left behind” rule, with only the bare minimum in the last and continued to struggle without help. My mom recently had a meeting with some of his teachers and our principals. They told my mom they were only allowed to help my brother with one of his problems: ADHD or his lack of reading comprehension. In Mississippi, you are only allowed one learning disorder; only one you are allowed to get help with. Today his high school teachers work with him more than his elementary and middle school teachers ever did, but he still struggles. School simply doesn’t cater to everyone’s needs.

      There are seven different types of learning styles and our teachers are only teaching in one or two styles. Although, teachers are not the only ones at fault. The entire system has more faults than positive procedures. The system fails to help each student reach their full potential. We waste time with standardized tests and “teaching fish how to climb trees”. A way to think about it is each student is a different animal, from giraffes, to turtles, to dogs, to sharks and asking them all to do the same thing like swim to the bottom of the ocean or climb a tree is helping one small group and letting the others fall flat on their faces. We need to create a system where everyone can excel and actually learn instead of just memorizing for the test.

                                                                                                         Thank you for your time and consideration,

                                                                                                                                                                Abby Marek