Friday, September 12, 2008


What do you think should get priority in a school system?

Your choices are:

a) Large High School campuses with room for football and soccer fields*
b) Lots of technology including interactive white boards in every classroom
c) Full-day Kindergarten system-wide

Pick two.

*For extra-curricular team sports ONLY. These fields are not, repeat NOT, for use during recess. Recess not included in HS anyway. Nor are they for use by kids not involved in team sports as places to play, say, Ultimate Frisbee or capture the flag or what not outside of school hours.


3carnations said...

I am in favor of full day kindergarten, but if I can only choose two of them, I guess I will go with one and two.

3carnations said...

errr...I mean a and b. Heh.

jo(e) said...

Two? But I only like one of them.

allison said...

Initially I was all about b and c, but then I realized that having space for kids to run and play was really important, too. I like the idea of full-day kindergarten very much, so definitely c. Although, it is important to make sure that kids are emotionally ready for full day. Then, after balancing the activity benefits vs. the technology benefits, I gotta go with activity. Kids need space and activities that allow them to run and play. Which makes a and c my final answer.

kathy a. said...

definitely full-day kindergarten. and i think kids need space to run and do stuff -- although, i'm not that keen on all the overzealous attention that organized sports gets.

i think kids need some technology -- it's not like when i was growing up, when computers were the size of refrigerators -- but little kids don't need much of that, and i really don't get interactive white boards at all.

kathy a. said...

jo(e), you didn't say which one.

Madeleine said...

Definitely C. Half-day kindergarten creates a huge burden for working parents and I think most kids are able to handle a full day if it is well planned.

For choosing between A and B, it depends which is currently more lacking in your school system. If technology is in a reasonable place and the community sports leagues have nowhere to play, then fields. But if there are already lots of fields and the schools have no technology, then I'd spend some money there.

Eva said...

Actually I'm not into any of those, but since I have to pick, B and C.

I care more about unpressured, fun learning, according to people's interest, and playtime, and especially to well-prepared and paid teachers, in safe environments with a variety of supplies (so, like B).

PS: My husband works for a company that makes those white boards.

KLee said...

My choices are b and c, but I'm a little biased in favor of all-day kindergarten. Our state has had all day programs for years, and there's just no way that we could meet all of the standards if the days were shorter.

kathy a. said...

well, on further thought -- i don't really like large high schools in the first place. and think we put too much into organized, extra-curricular sports, as opposed to things like art, music, active and outdoor activities for everyone, science, field trips, quality after-school programs, etc.

eva, mean no disrespect to your husband -- i'm sure there are so many ways that tech can advance learning. [and i am a dino, myself, having gotten about as far as overheads and never learned powerpoint yet.]

but i worry about putting too much faith in tech, and investing too little in basics. i'm thinking now of my idiot SIL, who kept asking if she should get a computer to help her kindergartener at school, but was unwilling to spend time helping him learn to sound out words and read, or making sure he practiced writing his letters, helping him work with numbers, etc.

Magpie said...

b and c.

sports are overrated, and it's especially galling that you say the fields are to be off limits to non-sanctioned use.

people in my town keep talking about putting in a fake turf field - what the hell is wrong with dirt and grass and mud?

liz said...

Our county's priorities are A and B.

As an additional bonus, the interactive white boards seldom work.

Full-day Kindergarten? Keep dreaming.

I'm frustrated.

Mummy/Crit said...

Wow, when I read your disclaimer on a) i was totally annoyed (but not at you). What is the point of having sporting fields if they're not for the whole community to use, i wonder?

Full day kindergarten is a good thing for "working families" (as our Prime Minister is fond of saying). Choice would be nice.

Technology is the way of the future, but I hear you on the unreliability of the hardware. D'Arcy has an interactive whiteboard in his classroom. it seems to work OK, but the teachers need some more workshops on it. And it only runs on bloody W1nd0w$.

Quinn said...

My sister, who used to teach at our local public school, told me point blank that our district's kindergarten (2.5 hours a day) was worthless and my kids would get nothing from it. Hence, DQ's in private for one more year.

I would choose C and then C again. (We just got the whiteboards at my college, and they are overhyped and underused.)