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Our Educational Issues - Research Paper Example

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The American school system Author Instructor Date The American education system is different compared to many countries such as Germany, Britain or China. Education is the primary responsibility of the local government and the state. This is because over time, the federal government values local governance of each state leading to a lack of a country level education system…
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Download file to see previous pages Due to this, there is a great variation in terms of subjects, courses and other activities between schools of different states. Despite the variations, there are some common features in all schools regardless of their location. One of the common points is the three level division of the education system. The three levels include the elementary or primary education, the secondary education and the higher education. Formal schooling lasts for an average of 12 years when an individual is around the age of 18. This is not the case though in most states as compulsory schooling may end when an individual is 16 years. All American children have access to the free public education American educators use the term K-12 and sometimes PK-12 to refer to primary and secondary education. Most of US children start their education prior to entering the PK-12 education. The parents of such children have to privately finance these institutions. After pre-school and elementary school, the children then enter formal school at the average age of six. Although most American schools are well funded, they are still performing poorly based on the standardized testing, graduation rates, college admissions and national rankings. Many scholars and individuals have tried to look at the issues as to why schools are performing poorly and most of them agree that money is not one of the issues (Friedman25) A report from the International summit of Teaching rated America as an average compares to other nations. This is despite the fact that US invests in education more compared to other countries such as Canada. In the report, it was noted that America spends over $800 billion in a year. This amount is five times more than Japan which is the second highest spender. However, evidence from the summit revealed that one of the major causes of problem in the education system is the spending of the allocated money ((Peter26) American teachers have been obtaining little support in terms of money. Most of them go into debts so as to start their career. They are not motivated in terms of their salary making them to be less productive in school. Productivity of teachers is partially reflected in the grades of his or her students. Teachers who end up working in poor communities usually make less than those in more affluent areas. As a result, most of this teachers end up paying for many of their supplies. Additional evidence shows that the US is willing to lower educational standards rather than raising teachers’ salaries. In addition, the teachers of American schools have very little opportunities for collaborating with each other making most of them quite within their first five years. Countries such as Finland and Singapore pay their teachers very well and provide an enabling environment for them to collaborate effectively. One of the good news for America is that this problem is in the public eye and Obama’s administration is trying to stimulate improvements. In order to solve this problem, teachers need more support from the government and the local administration. The support should not only come in form of higher salaries but also in form of grants for those pursing teacher-related careers as well as providing a supportive environment for teacher collaboration ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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