You can credit liberals with one thing — they are a persistent lot. The Herald and News once again carries their water with this story “Advanced Diploma, fifth-year program pays off.” Sounds like a great success, right? The Advanced Diploma Program allows students who failed to graduate their senior year to attend KCC the following year, earn their high school diploma AND receive credit for their first year of college. The Advanced Diploma Program classes magically count for both their high school and their college education. The Advanced Diploma program propels the Klamath Falls City School graduation rate of 47% and the Klamath County Schools graduation rate of 67% to 90%. Wow. Simply amazing. Isn’ this great?!?
Unfortunately, as with most liberally slanted stories in the Herald and News, this story omits any analysis as to whether this program is truly a benefit for our community or not. This piece does not give the “other side of the story”, so that is what I intend to do. At the end of this article I hope you have a clearer understand of what is really going on and therefore can make an intelligent decision whether to raise your pompoms in praise of this “progress” in our children’s education or not.
Suppose there was a parent of a 13 year old boy. One night at the table, the 13-year old refuses to eat any of his vegetables. He is ready for a fight. He wants to show a little independence and he has decided to stake his flag on not eating vegetables. The parent first tries to reason with with the boy, but he refuses. Next the parent tries an emotional plea but that fails as well. Exasperated the parent resorts to offering him a special desert at his favorite restaurant in exchange for him eating his vegetables. The boy smiles and agrees. A few days later that same parent learns the boy refuses to clean his room. Again reason and emotion fail to persuade him, so the parent offers to pay for him and friends to see a movie, if he would only clean his room. The boy smiles and agrees.
So is this a good parent? The parent is getting the desired results, right? The parent has a son who eats his vegetables and cleans his room. Shouldn't we all be happy? Before you answer, let me ask one other question — at what cost is the parent “suceeding” in raising a son who eats vegetables and cleans their room? What is happening here isn’t good parenting but bribery. This boy is not learning the consequences of poor behavior. The son is not learning to respect authority. Instead, negative consequences that go hand-in-hand with poor behavior have been erased and in its place bribes are the only motivator for common sense and decent behavior. In other words, this parent is creating a spoiled brat, unprepared for the harsh realities of the real world, where poor behavior is rarely offset by bribes but instead accompanied by misery.
When does this end? It ends when the parent can no longer afford in time, money or energy to offer any more bribes. And then what? A massive tantrum. The child has learned not to work hard, not to do what he is expected, not to contribute, not to think of others but to only demand more and more and more. The child only cares about himself, his desires and the “system” has catered to those every whims. Why would he ever change his behavior? Good parenting is more than getting children to eat vegetables and clean their rooms. It is the process that matters as much (if not more) than the results. For in the process the child learns respect for others and the value of hard work. It is not all about them. It is about them living in harmony with others, and not taking advantage of others.
Let’s return to our beloved public education system. Given the current circumstances my recommendation for all parents of children in public high school is not to make them do their home work or to study hard. Look, if they do those things, they might graduate on time. What a shame! Instead have your high schoolers enjoy themselves and their friends. Fail. Do not graduate on time. Then they can get their first year of college paid for by the state (er, the tax payers). This “Advanced Diploma program” (which is leftist-speak to the max) is not an advanced anything. It is a trick to get you and me to pay for a year of college at KCC. It removes the shame and consequences of failing to graduate on time. We, the tax payers, pay very good money ($144,000 per student over 12 years) for public education. And now that system offers incentives not to graduate on time and sticks us with the bill for another year.
If we compare the public school’s “successful” graduation rate of 90% to those students who are in home schools or in private schools, the cost for public education is more than double and the graduation rate still falls 10% short. Think about that for a moment. Over 100% more expensive and still worse graduation rates. What’s more, what are the life-lessons our public education system is teaching our children? Sure the program delivers better results, but what else are these children learning? Moreover, why aren’t the public schools being held accountable for the awful job they are doing in the first place? Is there any real change happening in the K-12 public school system, so we don’t need this “advanced” program — this additional expense to the tax payer? This program puts a bandage on skin cancer and we are all supposed to be elated thinking all is well because we have a bandage!
Don’t be fooled. This is success story is really a liberal lie. Liberals never want you to look at the real effectiveness or the cost of their ideas — only their intentions. When we look at the real effects or costs, these programs are utter disasters. This program (as do all liberal programs) creates the worst kind of citizen — the kind that is spoiled and who expects others to pay for the consequences of their poor behavior. In other words young adults unprepared for the real world.