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6 years ago  ::  Sep 08, 2008 - 7:08AM #61
Laura78
Posts: 2,774

Mareczku wrote:

I just looked up Washington DC and found some interesting facts.  These are 2004 figures.  In 2004, the average teacher pay for DC teachers was $58,456., this was higher than any state, the national average was $47,750, the average for Utah was $39,965, the lowest was South Dakota at $34,040.  Expenditures per pupil were $12,959, this was second only to New Jersey's $13,338, the national average was $8,310, Utah was the lowest at $4991.  Pupils per teacher were 14.2, California was 21.1, Utah was 22.6, the national average was 15.8.  DC's enrollment at 76,714 was lower than any state, Wyoming had 84,733 enrolled and Vermont had 98,352 enrolled.   DC however had the worst high school graduation rate at 51.5%.  It was worse than the worst state,  South Carolina at 51.7%.  Utah, with far lower teacher salaries, far lower per pupil expenditures and far larger class sizes had a graduation rate of 82.1% ranking them 5th among the states.  It seems that DC's biggest problem is that most of their school students come from single parent families.  The biggest help for DC schoolkids would be to encourage men to marry women when they get them pregnant.  Kids from 2 parent families do a lot better in school.   

Peace - Mareczku



You figures are right, but there are several things that they do not take into account.
The major things are:

1) As you say, kids that come from struggling families are in a worse position that kids who come from a well-educated well-adjusted family.
That means they need more from us, way more, not less.

Article from Newsweek;
Nothing could have prepared me for the dysfunction and tragedy of working at one of Washington, D.C.'s failing schools.

It was my first day as a part-time journalism teacher at Washington, D.C.'s Cardozo Senior High School in the fall of 2006, and as I came through the front door, I was greeted with so much noise that I assumed the kids must be switching classes. But after passing through the metal detector, I realized the uproar was emanating from the dozen or so students ditching class just outside the principal's office. I looked around, naively assuming that an administrator or at least the security guard I'd just passed would intervene to quiet this hullabaloo. But—no. I was clearly the only person who thought something unusual was going on. As I soon learned, the halls of Cardozo High were quiet only once a day: during the daily hall sweep, which was announced via the intercom before it commenced.

...

Cardozo had hundreds of students, yet the administration decided to lock all the student bathrooms except one girls' and one boys' on the first floor, as a security measure.

...

On the day before I returned to my regular job, I assured them that I would come back when I could. "You won't come back," one student told me bluntly. "No one ever comes back." Clearly, that challenge couldn't go ignored. But I wasn't prepared for the reception I got when I showed up a few weeks later. When two of my toughest students spotted me coming down the hall, they let out a scream and threw their arms around my neck. I was surprised and touched, but also realized how little they had come to expect. >>


2) the school system is so failing apart that revamping is going to need millions of extra-dollars. There is new lady here in Washington, featured in Newsweek here, who comes from Teach for America. She has asked 40 million dollars to repair shabby dangerous building, provide school supplies, etc.

"Not long after Michelle Rhee took over as head of the Washington, D.C., public schools a year ago, she announced a plan to shut down almost two dozen schools in D.C.'s decrepit, shrinking, public-education system.
...
She says she wakes up every morning with a "knot in my stomach," and that she is "angry," though "angry in a good way." She is angry at a system of education that puts "the interests of adults" over the "interests of children," i.e., a system that values job protection for teachers over their effectiveness in the classroom. Rhee is trying to change that system.
...
" Not sure what she wanted to do with her life as she graduated from Cornell in 1992, Rhee joined Teach For America, a then brand-new organization, created by a Princeton student, to get Ivy Leaguers to work in poor inner-city schools for a couple of years. The experience, she says, "has shaped every single day of my life since then."           Rhee was placed in one of the lowest-performing schools in Baltimore as a second-grade teacher. "It was a total culture shock for me," she recalls. While she was talking to her students as they lined up for lunch, one of the students fell down on the floor. "Each kid, as they were walking by, kicked the kid that was down," Rhee says. "I was, like, 'What are they doing?' But it was like second nature to them. The kid is down. Kick him."



3) In many affluent suburbs PTA raise money "under the table" to support art and music programs and extra-curricular activities. They do it under the table so that the money is not re-directed  to those districts who are poorest. I  understand they want it spent for their kids, but that doesn't change that kids from poor families do in fact get less.


In addition, although we can not change what happen to these kids-being born out of wedlock, which I agree with you makes a huge difference- there is something we can change. here and now, for the kids who already here.
It scientifically proven that programs like pre-school education-see a recent study published in Science last week- do work.

Not surprisingly, these programs make the biggest difference for kids who are from "at risk" backgrounds, with parents having had a poor education themselves.
I mean, I was lucky, my family was great, i would have been successful in school regardless...even when I had bad teachers, I was fine because I had support at home....but more money has to be spent for kids who do not have a supportive family...
Yet, the federal funding for these programs in the US has been cut since Regan.

Are we saying that, we are pro-life at conception and death, but we are pro-choice the rest on the time? i.e. leave the parents to make their own choices about how their kids are going to be left on their own and uneducated?

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6 years ago  ::  Sep 08, 2008 - 6:46PM #62
johnnyjoe
Posts: 2,218
IF you vote for Barack Hussein Obama, you are voting for a man who stanchly believes not even an aborted child who survives the process has a right to live.

Voting for Obama could, and I think will, mean voting for a man who will materially cooperate in the deaths of children inside and outside of the womb.

Do you want to vote for a man who gives every indication of being willing to MATERIALLY COOPERATE with abortion?
"If Samson could slay 1000 Philistines with only the jawbone of an ass,
think what God could do with a complete ass."
St. John Vianney
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6 years ago  ::  Sep 08, 2008 - 7:21PM #63
Mareczku
Posts: 2,220
That was an excellent post Laura.  It is surely hard work for the teachers in those schools.  The big problem that I see is how do we get dads to love their kids.  How many kids in DC schools don't have a dad in their home that loves them and cares for them.  A lot of their dads are gone and don't care.  Look at Utah, they have the largest class sizes, the lowest spending and one of the lowest teacher's salaries but most of the kids live with their moms and dads so this is the big difference.  All the government spending in the world can't force a dad to love his kids.  It is hard for many schools because the teachers have to try to parent their students and they end up with one hand tied behind their back because they aren't supposed to talk about God or morality or right and wrong.  Many of the teachers are real heroes. 

Peace - Mareczku
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6 years ago  ::  Sep 12, 2008 - 10:01PM #64
Laura78
Posts: 2,774
Hi Mareczhu....there are heroes...and then there are slackers as well who sleep in class or don't show up ever or let the kids watch movies...they can hardly be fired so they get moved around until they hit a district so crappy and so low performing that the principals are  either forced to take those kind of teachers or no one...guess who goes to school in those districts?

Kids born from single mothers on welfare who would need the best and the brightest teachers in order to have a real chance :(
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6 years ago  ::  Sep 18, 2008 - 7:30PM #65
azulsea
Posts: 1
Laura, I agree with all you have said. I am a cradle Catholic who is so frustrated with the only issues that my conservative parish seems to feel are important-abortion and euthanasia.  Voting conservatively seems so easy.  You vote for the person who says they are prolife but doesn't do anything to give people better options, ie healthcare, better education, more support to have an unwanted baby and to give the baby up for adoption.  Your taxes don't go up for things such as healthcare, better schools in poor areas.  AS a Catholic growing up in the 50's and the 60's, I loved that Catholics cared about the poor, the elderly, children, education etc.  When programs to help the disadvantaged were cut, the Catholic Church protested.  Yes churches and other organizations can help but we also need the help of government to make this a better country.  Not everyone was born with marvelous parents like I was, whose life was centered around their children and our education, (including the Catholic Faith) and our future.   The children that we are saving if we are prolife, do we care about whether they will have healthcare, whether they have a roof over their head and a safe, loving environment to live in?   I am not saying that we need to support everyone from cradle to death but we need to try to improve their lives.  IF your Dad is in jail and your Mom is a junkie and a hooker, your life is just survival on the streets.  We have to care about this too.  We need to care about the elderly person who is living solely on Social Security and has to choose between food, heating and the drugs they need for their heart, lungs or diabetes.  Isn't this being prolife too?


A comment on the number of births going down.. about the time Roe VS Wade went into effect, birth control also made huge gains.  How many of the statistics of lower births were as a result of birth control?  I know Catholics who are fervently prolife as a single issue, but use birth control and decide not to have children.
We also don't know how prevalent abortions were before Roe VS Wade.  the wealthy could find and pay a doctor to do a D & C, the poor had back alley abortions sometimes the Mom and Baby died.  No one is for abortion or the killing of babies- lets give people more options and support to have their babies not just vote prolife and feel we are prolife.  I want to vote for the person who I feel is going to make the lives of people better.  Who once again cares for the middle class and the poor. 

Comment to JohnnyJoe.  The email that is going around about Obama being for infanticide isn't true.  It was already on the books in Illinois that if a baby, for any reason- was born alive they were to begin medical treatment and be cared for.  Voting against this do not change that.  What Obama was voting against was wording that would have begun to overturn Roe VS Wade.  Now you may say that you would like to have it overturned and that is fine but to say that he is for infanticide is a lie.  I'm not saying you are lying, I'm saying that what is being sent as true is a LIE.
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6 years ago  ::  Sep 19, 2008 - 8:26PM #66
Laura78
Posts: 2,774
Yeah, it is hard...I think the official position of the RCC, to safeguard life "from conception to death" is the right one. It means at all times, including DURING the lifetime!

No party is going to do that. You can also make the claim that voting republican you will be a complice in letting poor children from uncaring parents die spiritually and often physically (look at the statistics).

What Maretzku said, it is true. The family is crucial. But WE are their family as well. That child from a single mother IS my brother. I AM just every bit responsible for him or her as the father who walked away. So if the father is not there it is our MORAL responsibility to take care of that child. Leaving that child to his/her destiny is JUST AS BAD as having that child aborted, IMO.

The reason why I am for Obama is this: I feel that I have more power in fighting abortion by counseling and spreading the Gospel, than I will ever have by acting on those big things such as health care, social security and welfare. I just don't have enough money for that.

So those are my reasons.
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6 years ago  ::  Sep 19, 2008 - 8:34PM #67
Laura78
Posts: 2,774
My Catholic upbringing was in the school founded by Santa Maria Giuseppa Rossello...she went around poor neighborhood picking up little girls on their way to destitution and founded a free school for them...I feel very strongly about those sorts of things.
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6 years ago  ::  Sep 21, 2008 - 3:43PM #68
Tamayo
Posts: 236
Cheers for Laura!

Also Azulsea!
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6 years ago  ::  Oct 15, 2008 - 6:37PM #69
redroses098
Posts: 22
Kay, I haven't read every single post, but it doesn't seem has though anyone has stated the obvious. Our government may be a democracy, but the Catholic Church isn't. Believing that abortion is murder, homosexual sex is disordered, that to end a life before natural death is evil, and that we must live (and that includes vote) these beliefs are NOT options.

Separation of Church and State isn't "let's get rid of all the religious people in government because not everyone shares their views"; it's ONLY a constitutional promise that the federal government will not FORCE anyone to belong to a religion, i.e. to have a state religion. THAT'S IT!! The term "separation of church and state" isn't even in the Constitution by the way. It was ripped from a letter of somebody (I think it was Jefferson) trying to explain it to somebody else and slapped on a bumper sticker.

Now, you can be registered Democratic, in that way you will of course be a Democrat, but to vote like one simply isn't acceptable. I don't like everything about the Republican party either, but at least they don't further the evil that's being pushed by democrats. So I do the only thing I can do in an that instance, I vote for the only slightly more reasonable candidate there is and pray, pray, pray!

(Hi everyone! I'm new, by the way!)
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5 years ago  ::  Oct 22, 2008 - 9:24AM #70
derose107
Posts: 1
I am taking RCIA now.  I refer to a  website, www.catholicdemocrats.org, whenever I wonder about the faith and my political stance
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