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Re: exception: very tiny one

>My son has been unfortunate in having to study in the public school system
>of USA, and I assure you that this system - while HEAVILY FUNDED by the US
>tax payer - is the pits.  Any ordinary Indian private school is ten times
>better than these schools in building essential skills of language and
>maths. Particularly in inner cities, where we are located in Los Angeles.
>The problem with inner cities is that many parents do not take full
>responsibility for their children's education. They seem to think that
>they produce children as a 'favor' to the society.
>Also, the teachers in public schools, not being accountable, try their
>best to MINIMIZE their work, by reducing the homework given, etc. In India
>if a school were to NOT give lots of homework, we would withdraw our child
>and shift to another school. Unfortunately one can't afford that luxury

I am afraid your conclusion is not true of the entire U S public educational
system. Unfortunately, your experience is in one of the toughest areas of
the country -  inner city Los Angeles. ( Frankly, I wouldn't live in that
area even if I am offered the best paying job in the world!). The quality of
U S public school education varies greatly from state to state and community
to community and not all the good schools are in rich areas. Also, while
some teachers may have the attitude you describe, I am  sure not all of them
even in  Los Angeles schools are totally jaded. For instance. my grandson
attended a public school in Chicago suburbs. Although the school system
itself was considered very good, my grandson was unfortunate to have a
teacher who didn't care much for gifted youngsters. He had a bad year and
ended up disliking school. Now they live in Birmingham, Alabama, a State
with not exactly a good reputation for public education. My grandson has had
two excellent teachers  - last year and this year - and is very happy and
doing extremely well.

I also have  personal experience of three American public school teachers -
both of my wife's parents and one of my closest friends. Although all three
would be the first to tell you that there are many bad teachers in America
(whether in public or private schools), the three  represent what is good
about  American public education - mastery in their respective fields and
deep caring and concern for children.

Of course, parental involvement is of extreme importance. A child may go to
the best school in the world - private or public - but if the parents don't
take an active role in the child' education, the child may not get  full

Ram Narayanan

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