Let Teenagers Try Adulthood By Leon Botstein Analysis

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American High schools as presented by Leon Botstein in “Let Teenagers Try Adulthood” are “obsolete and need to be abolished”, while this is one way to look at how to fix high school, it is not the only solution. There are some major concerns with high school, however abolishing them is unnecessary and an overreaction. Instead of using Botstein’s extreme changes to reinvent the helpfulness high schools are capable of, a few small changes that take time would be more beneficial to bring forth the full potential of high school and therefor the students that will attend them. A few changes that could be made include rethinking the attitudes of those associated with high schools, the lack of individualize teachings, and a reappraisal of the effect …show more content…
This creates a chain reaction where progressively more kids talk cynically about their school making high school seem worse than it is. Many kids at my high school don’t find the high school itself distressing, but the people in it. If kids stopped the negative comments about the school they would enjoy it, but instead they follow everyone else’s example and trash talk school to appear “cool” to other kids with the same opinion. In short students care too much about the wrong things. In Ross Douthat’s “Secrets of Princeton”, Douthat is replying to Susan Patton’s letter to the girls in Princeton that informs them of their need to find a spouse before they graduate and that Ivy League schools double as a dating service. Douthat informs Patton that ”Of course Ivy League schools double as a dating service” and that she doesn’t “have to come out and say it!”(Douthat). Kids focus on one idea, such as members of the opposite gender, and forget about everything else. This is just another way that kids need to adjust their attitude. When kids focus one thought, like trying to find a spouse before they graduate they lose focus on school and their grades, then opinions of schools deteriorate …show more content…
This works to a point; kids can pass the test, but what happens beyond that is dismissed as something for their next teacher to consider, to repeat over again until there’s no more time and the student only knows how to pass a test. In “the secret to fixing bad schools” by David L. Kirp, Union City, a school previously thought of as a “factories of familiar” decided to make a change and to fix their school. One of their main beliefs being that “to succeed, students must become thinkers, not just test-takers.” (Kirp) This is a common issue that goes fixed. Schools may talk about it and try to fix it, but they never reach beyond talking to actually taking action like Union City did. They fixed their school by “figuring out what’s best for each child rather than batch-processing them.” (Kirp). It’s unrealistic to hold on to the idea that all students can have an individual plan, but even grouping students into smaller groups that better fit their learning capabilities would be an improvement over “batch-processing” every single one of them. Schools attempt to do this with Advanced Placement classes and classes for those requiring more help, however this is not enough. Making a few classes different in academic level is not the same as making sure those students get into the classes that fit them best. Thinking that one teacher/councilor could keep track of every kid is an impossible

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