## The Structure of Public School

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### The Structure of Public School

Welcome to another age-defining contest here at the ILP Chamber of Debate!

The contestants are Pavlovianmodel146 and Loren646, debating their respective visions for the public school system. Each contestant will open with a description of his or her vision, and subsequent posts will be dedicated to demonstrating its superiority over that of her or his opponent. Each contestant has 72 hours to respond to their opponent's post, and after three posts each, the judges, d0rkyd00d, Xunzian, and Wonderer, will release their decision(s) as to the winner. The contestants have assured us that they are committed to a respectful debate, and we will expect nothing less.

Without further ado, we turn it over to Loren646, who has opted for the first post.

Ladies and gentlemen, let the debate begin!
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Carleas
Magister Ludi

Posts: 5554
Joined: Wed Feb 02, 2005 8:10 pm
Location: Washington DC, USA

### Re: The Structure of Public School

Many of the current curriculum and courses that a student is required to partake and successfully pass are not meaningful and useful to the general population. Students are often heard saying "when will I need this in life?" To further exemplify my point, the show "Who is smarter than a 5th grader?" takes this meaning and proves that many adults indeed do not remember the material they are taught in school. Adults do not remember this information because it has no bearing or importance in their lives. Although this show is only on a 5th grade level, as we progress in our public school education many of the subjects we are taught are quite meaningless not only in our immediate future but in our whole adult life. I propose that we change the current school curriculum into a modern based curriculum that feature subjects that are not only expanding the mind of these young individuals but are also meaningful to the majority of students and actually useful to them in their own lives. Instead of focusing on the whole education system currently taken by students which would require a lengthy dissertation inappropriate for this forum I will maintain that the current curriculum K-8 remain unchanged and most importantly I believe we should focus our attention as a society on the current high school curriculum.

The current high school curriculum mandated for by each state is generally the same although slightly varying state by state. A typical high school schedule mandated by the state would look something like this:

English: 3 years
Mathematics: 3 years
Social Science: 3 years
Science: 3 years
Foreign Languange: 2 years in same language
Physical Education: 2 years

Many of these courses are irrelevant to the general population. They will never learn anything in these courses that they would use in their future profession nor in their personal lives. I recommend we substitute these required courses with courses either relevant to their profession, personal lives, or well-being.

English should be increased substantially to something more equivalent to 5 or 6 years. English is used everyday by the current general population and reading and writing are becoming more of a necessity as we move towards the digital age of texting and the internet. Information is power and the ability to understand information read is vital. As the communication gap shrinks it is becoming increasingly more important to understand others and convey what we intend to say and mean into words and grammatically legible sentences and paragraphs.

Mathematics should be reduced to Algebra 1. If a student has already taken algebra 1 by this time mathematics should not be required. By requiring 3 years of education in mathematics we are requiring and forcing individuals to pass classes that are quite meaningless. By forcing a student to further in math we are only pushing them into a subject they dislike which will cause disruptions and slow down students who want to further their education and pursue a profession using mathematics. With the current curriculum many students are forced to take classes in Calculus, Precalculus, Trignometry, and Algebra II in order to graduate. None of these are relevant to anyone not pursuing a career in mathematics.

Social Science will be increased another year as it is very important for students to learn about history, government, their rights as a citizen, and subjects that are important to them as useful law abiding citizens in the United States. Learning this will protect them from an unjust political system and to allow them enough understanding in choosing candidates and laws that suite their needs.

Science should be be reduced to 1 year. 1 year is more than enough for any individual to know whether or not they want to further pursue a career in the sciences. Most of the information learned in chemistry, biology, and physics are unnecessary. To know how to calculate acceleration, the molecular biology of plant cells, and the chemical structure of an atom are examples of irrelevant topics for almost all of the general population.

Foreign language should be reduced to a ½ year. A student should know after 1/2 year whether or not they should pursue a foreign language. As we continue to move into a digital age where communication is important for the success of individuals more focus should be on English than Foreign Language. 2 years of high school foreign language will not give them enough to understand, speak, or any way to make that foreign language useful. Moreover, English has dominated the foreign countries and for the average american citizen their need for another language diminishes each and every year - which at the current moment is already at a point where the need of another language is pretty much zilch.

With the diminished requirements of high school education, I recommend we fulfill them with more useful subjects than the currently mandated subjects which are useless to them and offer no utility. I recommend a course on credit, savings, and large purchases. In this course, it will discuss credit cards, apr%, savings, and their first large purchases like a car and a home. This course is extremely beneficial to almost the entire general public and is a necessity for many individuals as many are struggling through debt as we live in a debt society and how our expanding economy is built on debt.

I also recommend students be required to take 1 to 2 years in computer science. Computers are a fundamental part of every persons life and is useful to every individual. In a digital world almost everyone uses computers and this technology has effectively increased output in many of our industries. Computers have also given age to the communication gap where individuals who know how to use computers are in touch with more information and knowledge than one who does not understand how to use one.

Students who decide to pursue a career in a subject that is not mandated (in my curriculum) like foreign language or mathematics will have an advantageous head start going into college. For these individuals, classrooms will be smaller. These classes will also move more rapidly, more productively, and the students would receive more challenging coursework as they will not need to slowed down for those students who do not care for the subject but are required to pass anyway. Challenging students early in a subject like mathematics will increase new technology and innovations in our country as these courses will focus on those individuals who will actually use them.

The crux of my argument is that the current educational system is not preparing the general population for their future and that many of the current courses taught to them are courses they are not interested in taking in the first place (and for good reason). Most of the information they do learn they forget as they never ever use it beyond the classroom. Currently, perhaps 1 student out of 500 students will find a particular subject like advanced mathematics necessary in their entire lifetime (that's 60 more years that each individual will never need something that we required them to learn). So why make a group of 499 students suffer at the expense of 1 student (especially when we can better provide this 1 student in my reformed curriculum)?

My criteria for accepting or rejecting a class that is mandatory is whether or not that class provides utility for the general population to take (either in their personal or professional lives). Public schools should provide skills required in life like understanding money; instead, we teach them how to calculate the area under a curve (no applicable purpose). When choosing classes for these young minds we are dealing with time, which is a finite source for every human being. Each current course that is mandated is an opportunity cost of a more useful course. Courses that a student should be required to take must make knowledge of this opportunity cost and choose courses that provide the most to each and every individual.
Loren646

Posts: 80
Joined: Sat Dec 06, 2008 10:15 am

### Re: The Structure of Public School

Good evening and thank you to all participants, judges, the moderator, Carleas and spectators alike.

First of all, it should be known that many of the course requirements adopted by High Schools in their curriculums are based upon generally accepted college entry requirements. While it is possible to obtain a diploma without such courses as Geometry and Algebra II, these classes are almost universally encouraged because they are what most four-year colleges and universities expect you to have taken. Please refer to the following emboldened section as it contains what the ACT believes to be the average college entrance criteria: (1)

English Four years of English
Mathematics Three years of mathematics, including rigorous courses in Algebra I, Geometry, and Algebra II
Natural Sciences Three years of science, including rigorous courses in Biology, Chemistry, and Physics
Social Studies Three years of social studies
Additional Courses Some colleges and universities require other classes as prerequisites for admission, such as two or more years of the same foreign language or courses in the visual arts, music, theater, drama, dance, computer science, etc.

It is a common goal of most public High Schools to be a launghing pad for a collegiate education and to have as many students as possible from any particular High School to move on the collegiate level. As a result, the majority of High School curriculums are tailored to meet at least the minimum entry requirements of the average four-year college or university.

With that said, it would be inadvisable for a High School to draft and enforce a curriculum that is comprised of classes that do not meet the standards for college entry. If there is any problem whatsoever with the taking of classes that can be viewed as, "Unnecessary," then that problem would be better addressed by the colleges and universities simply re-evaluating their individual admission requirements, but that is not the item of discussion in this particular debate.

The question is: What curriculum should be enforced by High Schools?

The curriculum currently in use by the majority of High Schools contain classes that are generally deemed necessary to advance and be accepted to an average four-year college or university, as a result, the curriculum should be unchanged until such a time that college and university admission requirements are.

There are generally three types of students in every High School and those are:

A.) Students who will graduate and go to college.
B.) Students who will graduate, but will not go to college.
C.) Students who will not graudate.

By necessity, the students who will graudate and plan to go to college should take a courseload that meets or exceeds the average entry requirements for college admission. There are colleges, however, that require math courses of an even higher level such as Calculus or Trigonometry for admission, naturally, students intending to go to those colleges or universities should adjust their courses accordingly.

There has been some debate that students are forced into such classes, but such is not the case. High School graduation can be had, for instance, without Calculus, Pre-Calculus, or even Algebra II. Further, Physics is not a science class that is necessarily a requirement for graduation. As an example, the graduation requirements of Buckeye Local High School (a public High School) located in, Jefferson County, OH, are as follows: (2)

English 4 Credits
Math 3 Credits
Science 3 Credits
Social Science 3 Credits
Health ½ Credit
Physical Education ½ Credit
Electives 14 Credits
Total 28 Credits

The above-referenced courses are indexed to the Ohio State Minimum Graduation Requirements. It should also be noted that one-half of the required courses for graduation are electives, and additionally, no foreign language is required (At the State Level) to graduate in the State of Ohio.

For those intending to graduate high school, but do not intend to go to college there are classes that can be taken which will earn an individual a high school diploma and are relevant to everyday life, which is why they are minimum graduation requirements. For specific course descriptions please refer to link 2, but here are what are possibly the easiest courses that can be taken, yet still result in graduation for each course requirement:

Math (3 Credits):

Integrated Algebra 1-A
Integrated Algebra 1-B
Integrated Geometry

or:

Math 9
Math 10
Math 11

These classes (algebra and geometry) focus on real-world problems and contain labs with focus on real-world applications of the math concepts learned in each respective class. Each of these classes are worth 1 math credit, and as a result, even Algebra I is a higher level math class than what is required to graduate.

The bottom set of classes focus on general mathematical principles as well as consumer and household mathematics. If the bottom set of classes were taken, the student would also have suffcient Math credits to graduate.

Science (3 Credits):
Physical Science (9th Grade Science-Required)
Life Science (Not Upper-level)
Conceptual Physics

In this case, it is relevant to add course descriptions for both life science and conceptual physics:

Life Science

This course is offered as a second science credit for the student who does not have the desire to seek upper level sciences. Life science is a study of life from the simplest one celled organisms of plants and animals proceeding to more complex multi-celled organisms of the plant and animal kingdoms. The course will emphasize the biological factors that influence our day-to-day living. (Pre - Physical Science)

Conceptual Physics

Conceptual Physics develops an understanding of the physics concepts by using a hands-on laboratory approach. This class will include more labs and exercises and less emphasis on calculations. The class may be used for a third science credit or as a skill builder for anyone interested in taking Physics 1. Note: Conceptual Physics is not rigorous enough mathematically to prepare students for college physics.

Again, Life Science focuses on how biology affects our day-to-day living while Conceptual Physics focuses on application and lab-work. Please note the disclaimer, "Conceptual Physics is not rigorous enough mathematically to prepare students for college physics."

Once again, if an individual were to take these three fundamental science classes and pass, it would be enough for graduation purposes.

Health (1/2) Credit:

Health:

The interest in personal health is higher today than ever before. People desire to live higher quality lives. This course is designed to give students practical knowledge that will enable them to maintain a high level of total well being. The course will visit the topics that demonstrate the importance of a wellness life style, nutrition, general aspect of appearance, exercise and fitness, human emotions, mental disorders, the effects of drugs, alcohol and tobacco, chronic infectious disease and (the state of Ohio required) teaching of sexually transmitted diseases, accident prevention and preparedness for emergencies.

The course instruction method will be lecture and discussion, practice exercise material, and student outside research. Grading will be based on by testing, participation, and class assignment completion.

It can be generally accepted that fitness, nutrition, exercise, appearance and many other aspects of this course have an impact on our day-to-day lives and affect us everyday.

Physical Education (1/2 Credit):

Physical Education I (9 Week Course)

Physical Education I is offered to all students to meet the state requirement for graduation. The purpose of this course is to have both boys and girls participate in various indoor and outdoor physical activities and recreational games.

Physical education is designed simply to instruct students as to the importance of exercise. When the current obesity rate in America is taken into consideration, one could argue that the demand of health and physical education courses in terms of credit earned is a little weak.

In terms of electives, which are to comprise one-half of the credits at this particular High School (14 Credits) there are many available that have an effect on our day-to-day lives, to name a few:

Introduction to Technology

Journalism I/Creative Media

Networking I

Information Technology I

Industrial Education I-Woodworking

Oral and Written Communications

Political and Economic Decisions

Accounting

Travel and Hospitality

Marketing

Psychology

Sociology

Home Economics

Foods

Child Care

Graphic Arts

Let it be shown that all of these electives are either technologically-heavy, puruse a specific career field, or can also be good for credits in other venues of study. High-level Math and Science courses are also considered as electives.

Buckeye Local High School is located in Jefferson County, as previously mentioned. All High Schools in Jefferson County as well as most other counties in Ohio combine their students to also form a Joint Vocational School. The concept of a joint vocational school is not only to allow students to take classes that follow a specific career path and are a step toward employment immediately after graduation, it is also recommended for students that do not have the capability to pass many High School level classes and such students are encouraged (not forced) to go there. The Jefferson County Joint Vocational School is also considered a public school and is part of the greater body of Jefferson County Schools.

The Jefferson County JVS offers the following career paths (3):

Auto Body

Auto Service

Computer Aided Drafting and Design

Carpentry

Computer Networking Technology

Cosmetology

Criminal Justice

Culinary Arts

Early Childhood Education

Graphic Arts

Health Technology

Interactive Technology

Multimedia

Power Mechanics

Welding

The Jefferson County Joint Vocational School not only issues a High School Diploma upon completion of requirements, but also issues licenses, work certificates, and has job placement programs to ensure a smooth transition from graduation to the working world. Again, the required courses are even lighter than Buckeye Local High School, a few different academic courses not related to the specific field are offered, but very few are required. However, the Jefferson County JVS does require American Government as well as American History. (4)

In conclusion, the argument that High Schools require an abundance of upper-level (and therefore, unnecessary) courses can be dismissed because it has been conclusively proven that an individual can graduate high school without even having taken Algebra I. The argument that schools do not teach relevant materials can be dismissed because the required course loads are clearly only specific to necessary general knowledge, or pursuit of a specific career or interest. Finally, the argument that the public school system does not do enough to prepare its students for the, "real world," and help them to gain employment after High School can be dismissed as Joint Vocational Schools and other comparable systems exist to do just that.

The High School curriculum is designed to give students the opportunity to take classes and earn credits that they are required to have for admission into many four-year colleges and universities. It is for that reason that such courses should continue to be offered as many students have a desire to further their education past the secondary level. If there are any discrepancies with the generally used High School curriculum, they exist only because colleges set their admissions criteria too high and require that too many classes related to a specific field of interest be taken. There are alternatives to these high-level courses for students that wish to simply graduate High School and proceed into the workforce.

No system can be perfect, but I believe the system used by the Buckeye Local High School, located in Jefferson County, Ohio, in conjunction with the Jefferson County Joint Vocational School is an excellent system currently in place which supports the needs of as many students as possible.

1. http://www.actstudent.org/college/courses.html
2. http://www.omeresa.net/schools/buckeye/hscourse.htm
3. http://www.jcjvs.k12.oh.us/Programs/JVS_PROGRAM.html
4. http://www.jcjvs.k12.oh.us/ (click on 'Academics')
"Love is the gravity of the Soul" - Abstract -/-/1988 - 3/11/2013 R.I.P

PavlovianModel146
Ringing The Bell

Posts: 7084
Joined: Tue Jul 03, 2007 4:56 am
Location: Ohio

### Re: The Structure of Public School

Pavlovianmodel146 wrote:Good evening and thank you to all participants, judges, the moderator, Carleas and spectators alike.

First of all, it should be known that many of the course requirements adopted by High Schools in their curriculums are based upon generally accepted college entry requirements. While it is possible to obtain a diploma without such courses as Geometry and Algebra II, these classes are almost universally encouraged because they are what most four-year colleges and universities expect you to have taken. Please refer to the following emboldened section as it contains what the ACT believes to be the average college entrance criteria: (1)

English Four years of English
Mathematics Three years of mathematics, including rigorous courses in Algebra I, Geometry, and Algebra II
Natural Sciences Three years of science, including rigorous courses in Biology, Chemistry, and Physics
Social Studies Three years of social studies
Additional Courses Some colleges and universities require other classes as prerequisites for admission, such as two or more years of the same foreign language or courses in the visual arts, music, theater, drama, dance, computer science, etc.

It is a common goal of most public High Schools to be a launghing pad for a collegiate education and to have as many students as possible from any particular High School to move on the collegiate level. As a result, the majority of High School curriculums are tailored to meet at least the minimum entry requirements of the average four-year college or university.

They say that a freudian slip is caused by the true thought of the subconscious mind. Maybe you already concede and subconsciously already agree that the current high school curriculum is a "laughing pad for collegiate education"?

Whether or not the universities actually do follow the high school curriculum or vice versa should not dictate what is actually useful in a childhoods education. If all universities required and forced every student to learn meaningless information we should not sit helplessly agreeing with them. Just because everyone else does it - does not mean we sheepishly follow. We are not arguing "should universities dictate what we teach our children?" We are arguing "whether or not the current system is flawed by forcing students to take useless classes." Most universities goal is to attract more students. The more students that the university gets the more money it obtains. Of course they are going to require students to take more courses and be in the university as long as possible by taking a variety of courses and in much depth as possible as it means more money to them.

Again the argument is not "Should universities be dictating what we teach but more on topic is the current high school education teaching individuals useless information?" We, as a general population deem what is appropriate and useful for our children. When we realize as a society that these courses offer no real term value we will dictate what universities teach by dictating what high schools teach. Either way, if we already establish that these students are not finding any use for these courses ever in their lifetime in high school why are we forcing them to take it in college too? Is it so these organizations could make more money? Just because they tell us to? Are we suppose to just do something totally irrational and wrong just because they say so? Does that make it right?

We as americans should hold ourselves to a higher standard and we should not just follow the herd mentality and orders of large companies - we should be doing what's right - and that's teaching our future generation things that are necessary in their lives (like credit and savings - who wants to have a foreclosed home? who wants their child to be an indentured servant to the credit card companies cause of debt?). Instead we fill their heads with much less important information - knowing geometry isn't going to help them when they are living paycheck to paycheck (but knowing about savings will). If a child wants to pursue a subject more deeply such as mathematics he is also able to without the interference and disruption of those who do not care for it. We should not waste these children's time on futile endeavors when they could be focusing on more important and life impacting courses in their lives. There is an opportunity cost here.

With that said, it would be inadvisable for a High School to draft and enforce a curriculum that is comprised of classes that do not meet the standards for college entry. If there is any problem whatsoever with the taking of classes that can be viewed as, "Unnecessary," then that problem would be better addressed by the colleges and universities simply re-evaluating their individual admission requirements, but that is not the item of discussion in this particular debate.

Exactly. What universities require is not necessarily correct. And in fact wrong and should be changed as well. But only as a society can we dictate what is taught and not taught at the university level. At many of the leading private institutions it would cost over $160,000 to graduate (not including graduate school or law school could rack up a total of$250,000). Why are we forcing our children to live in unnecessary debt? We force them to pay for so many courses that are trivial and useless to them. Why are we forcing these individuals to take these classes? Why are we forcing them into their adult lives with such an absurd amount of debt ($250,000 for school +$200,000 for a house – this is almost a half a million dollars of debt!)?

Many young individuals are overwhelmed by debt and I can see why. I do not want my child to live in an absurd amount of worrisome debt his whole life, do you? It is not right and as americans if we dictate what is required and we understand this - universities will follow as they want and need our money to survive. So if we dictate what high school requirements are it should follow that we require the same standard at our universities.

The question is: What curriculum should be enforced by High Schools?

The curriculum currently in use by the majority of High Schools contain classes that are generally deemed necessary to advance and be accepted to an average four-year college or university, as a result, the curriculum should be unchanged until such a time that college and university admission requirements are.

There are generally three types of students in every High School and those are:

A.) Students who will graduate and go to college.
B.) Students who will graduate, but will not go to college.
C.) Students who will not graudate.

By necessity, the students who will graudate and plan to go to college should take a courseload that meets or exceeds the average entry requirements for college admission. There are colleges, however, that require math courses of an even higher level such as Calculus or Trigonometry for admission, naturally, students intending to go to those colleges or universities should adjust their courses accordingly.

So by your logic, if some colleges requires them we force each and every students to take it. So why don't we force trigonometry and calculus on every student like we force these other subjects?

We do not because it is not necessary for most individuals. And that's my argument, that if it's not useful for most of the students - we should not require it. Again this points to the little comic above posted on why the kid should learn algebra and the teacher replies because it's on the test in six weeks. Same situation here. Why should they learn this course? Cause it's required of the college? That does not make it right. And again as people who pay for universities and taxes as a whole we dictate what universities as well as high schools should teach.

There has been some debate that students are forced into such classes, but such is not the case. High School graduation can be had, for instance, without Calculus, Pre-Calculus, or even Algebra II. Further, Physics is not a science class that is necessarily a requirement for graduation. As an example, the graduation requirements of Buckeye Local High School (a public High School) located in, Jefferson County, OH, are as follows: (2)

English 4 Credits
Math 3 Credits
Science 3 Credits
Social Science 3 Credits
Health ½ Credit
Physical Education ½ Credit
Electives 14 Credits
Total 28 Credits

The above-referenced courses are indexed to the Ohio State Minimum Graduation Requirements. It should also be noted that one-half of the required courses for graduation are electives, and additionally, no foreign language is required (At the State Level) to graduate in the State of Ohio.

I love how you have chosen a state in the middle of nowhere and one that is not heavily focused on their education. The state of Ohio is not renowned for their public education system - i think it's more of their sports program (Go Buckeyes!), don't you agree? I know it is commonly listed very low on a state by state comparison even when compared with the bottom half ([1] Ohio is ranked 41 out of 50 states)? Why didn't you choose a state like MA, NJ, or even NY?

Are you conceding that foreign language is not a course that should be deemed necessary since you are basing the curriculum requirements on this high school? Because if you are, you are agreeing it is not useful to most individuals. And as such they should not include it. Yet, many high schools do require foreign language as a requirement. And many more states are following this trend as the No Student Left Behind Act (2) that Bush signed focuses heavily on foreign language. And every year more and more states are pushing for foreign language requirements.

You said there is a debate whether classes like algebra 2, trig, precalc, calc, ect. are forced among students. There is no debate to this. They are forced upon millions of individuals. Even in the odd example high school you have chosen, what are the requirements? It says 3 credits of math. It does not say "once you take algebra 1 you are done with math." If they meant only up to an algebra level they would have clearly stated that in the requirements. Instead, they stated 3 credits. Many students go into High School having already taken geometry and algebra 1. And as such, when they enter high school they are required to take 3 more math credits. If they have already taken these lower level math classes then when they enter high school they would be forced to take these high level classes by default.

For those intending to graduate high school, but do not intend to go to college there are classes that can be taken which will earn an individual a high school diploma and are relevant to everyday life, which is why they are minimum graduation requirements. For specific course descriptions please refer to link 2, but here are what are possibly the easiest courses that can be taken, yet still result in graduation for each course requirement:

Math (3 Credits):

Integrated Algebra 1-A
Integrated Algebra 1-B
Integrated Geometry

or:

Math 9
Math 10
Math 11

Again, you have chosen the easiest courses - not required courses. Just because some individuals can get away with these easy courses does not mean all individuals can get away with it. Again, if someone comes in with algebra and geometry already taken in middle school they must take a higher level.

I don't understand why you decide to debate fact.

This is taken from a Kentucky High School – frequently asked questions (FAQ) that would apply to this high school as well as the requirements are the same “3 credits of math”:

"What mathematics courses are required for the graduating class of 2012? Answer: Students are required to have three credits in mathematics and to take mathematics every
year."

Again, they are required every year to take a math course and must pass three of them. Next question.

"Question: If students receive credit for Algebra I or Geometry in middle school, do they still need to
take mathematics every year in high school?
Answer: 704 KAR 3:305 states that students must take mathematics every year of high school. That is
different than a requirement that students receive four years of high school math credit. If a student is
enrolled in a high school for any given year, he/she must take mathematics that year."

Would you like to continue to debate over facts? We can do this all day. We can debate whether or not Obama was elected president or how about whether or not Paris is the capital city of France?

These classes (algebra and geometry) focus on real-world problems and contain labs with focus on real-world applications of the math concepts learned in each respective class. Each of these classes are worth 1 math credit, and as a result, even Algebra I is a higher level math class than what is required to graduate.

Very esoteric of you - “real word” problems. Care to name when I might need to geometrically prove that triangles with the points ILP and XYZ are congruent given that LP bisects XY? And when I would need to solve for the Pythagorean theorem in a “real world” application?

The bottom set of classes focus on general mathematical principles as well as consumer and household mathematics. If the bottom set of classes were taken, the student would also have suffcient Math credits to graduate.

Science (3 Credits):
Physical Science (9th Grade Science-Required)
Life Science (Not Upper-level)
Conceptual Physics

The requirements you have posted must include 3 credits of mathematics AND 3 credits of science. Not either or so it is not sufficient math credits to graduate.

In this case, it is relevant to add course descriptions for both life science and conceptual physics:

Life Science

This course is offered as a second science credit for the student who does not have the desire to seek upper level sciences. Life science is a study of life from the simplest one celled organisms of plants and animals proceeding to more complex multi-celled organisms of the plant and animal kingdoms. The course will emphasize the biological factors that influence our day-to-day living. (Pre - Physical Science)

Conceptual Physics

Conceptual Physics develops an understanding of the physics concepts by using a hands-on laboratory approach. This class will include more labs and exercises and less emphasis on calculations. The class may be used for a third science credit or as a skill builder for anyone interested in taking Physics 1. Note: Conceptual Physics is not rigorous enough mathematically to prepare students for college physics.

Again, Life Science focuses on how biology affects our day-to-day living while Conceptual Physics focuses on application and lab-work. Please note the disclaimer, "Conceptual Physics is not rigorous enough mathematically to prepare students for college physics."

Once again, if an individual were to take these three fundamental science classes and pass, it would be enough for graduation purposes.

Affects our day to day living? There are millions of things that affect our day to day living. Cars affect our day to day living. Pets affect our day to day living. What is the standard here? There has to be a standard that we measure our courses and decide whether or not they should be taught in school. Their application to real life could be one standard. And one that I strongly support in my position.

Health (1/2) Credit:

Health:

The interest in personal health is higher today than ever before. People desire to live higher quality lives. This course is designed to give students practical knowledge that will enable them to maintain a high level of total well being. The course will visit the topics that demonstrate the importance of a wellness life style, nutrition, general aspect of appearance, exercise and fitness, human emotions, mental disorders, the effects of drugs, alcohol and tobacco, chronic infectious disease and (the state of Ohio required) teaching of sexually transmitted diseases, accident prevention and preparedness for emergencies.

The course instruction method will be lecture and discussion, practice exercise material, and student outside research. Grading will be based on by testing, participation, and class assignment completion.

It can be generally accepted that fitness, nutrition, exercise, appearance and many other aspects of this course have an impact on our day-to-day lives and affect us everyday.

Interesting... “impact on our day-to-day lives” This is exactly what my position supports – courses that have a true impact on our day to day lives.

Physical Education (1/2 Credit):

Physical Education I (9 Week Course)

Physical Education I is offered to all students to meet the state requirement for graduation. The purpose of this course is to have both boys and girls participate in various indoor and outdoor physical activities and recreational games.

Physical education is designed simply to instruct students as to the importance of exercise. When the current obesity rate in America is taken into consideration, one could argue that the demand of health and physical education courses in terms of credit earned is a little weak.

again this has a direct impact on the lives on individuals. Actually a very important impact as many life threatening diseases are linked to obesity levels such as heart disease and diabetes which are extremely prevalent in the U.S.

Oddly, classes with such impact and importance in our lives - classes such as health and physical education are only ½ credit each...

In terms of electives, which are to comprise one-half of the credits at this particular High School (14 Credits) there are many available that have an effect on our day-to-day lives, to name a few:

Introduction to Technology

Journalism I/Creative Media

Networking I

Information Technology I

Industrial Education I-Woodworking

Oral and Written Communications

Political and Economic Decisions

Accounting

Travel and Hospitality

Marketing

Psychology

Sociology

Home Economics

Foods

Child Care

Graphic Arts

Let it be shown that all of these electives are either technologically-heavy, puruse a specific career field, or can also be good for credits in other venues of study. High-level Math and Science courses are also considered as electives.

That's good. Electives do not pertain to our discussion. Only requirements.

Buckeye Local High School is located in Jefferson County, as previously mentioned. All High Schools in Jefferson County as well as most other counties in Ohio combine their students to also form a Joint Vocational School. The concept of a joint vocational school is not only to allow students to take classes that follow a specific career path and are a step toward employment immediately after graduation, it is also recommended for students that do not have the capability to pass many High School level classes and such students are encouraged (not forced) to go there. The Jefferson County Joint Vocational School is also considered a public school and is part of the greater body of Jefferson County Schools.

The Jefferson County JVS offers the following career paths (3):

Auto Body

Auto Service

Computer Aided Drafting and Design

Carpentry

Computer Networking Technology

Cosmetology

Criminal Justice

Culinary Arts

Early Childhood Education

Graphic Arts

Health Technology

Interactive Technology

Multimedia

Power Mechanics

Welding

The Jefferson County Joint Vocational School not only issues a High School Diploma upon completion of requirements, but also issues licenses, work certificates, and has job placement programs to ensure a smooth transition from graduation to the working world. Again, the required courses are even lighter than Buckeye Local High School, a few different academic courses not related to the specific field are offered, but very few are required. However, the Jefferson County JVS does require American Government as well as American History. (4)

At least this vocational school can see the importance of government and american history and the irrelevance like upper level mathematics for most individuals. However, vocational schools are for people who want a vocation after school typically in a labor intensive field. That is not what I'm debating here. I'm not arguing whether the course offers them these professional skills. Again most of these skills are not necessary for the general population. I'm arguing that schools teach individuals only pertinent and useful information to the general population. For example, we should not be teaching useless information to the general public like how many elements are in the periodic table of elements.

Vocational schools do not take into account the guy who wants to pursue mathematics but not take biology. It does not take into account the biologist who doesn't want or need to take calculus. It does not take into account the politician who does not need chemistry. Vocational school is not a replacement for a high school education – it is an alternative and should be deemed as such.

In conclusion, the argument that High Schools require an abundance of upper-level (and therefore, unnecessary) courses can be dismissed because it has been conclusively proven that an individual can graduate high school without even having taken Algebra I.

I'm not debating that fact anymore as I've already proven my point. But I wanted to point out how you've been making exaggerated claims and illogical and incorrect conclusions based on your reasoning.

For example:

An asthmatic person who has to take several puffs of the inhaler to survive can be dismissed because it has been conclusively proven that an individual can survive without even taking 1 puff. Don't you see the illogical conclusion? Just because an individual can survive without even taking 1 puff does not mean ALL asthmatic people can survive by taking no puffs.

From your premise you can not “conclusively prove” that statement (even if you were correct) as you've incorrectly stated.

The argument that schools do not teach relevant materials can be dismissed because the required course loads are clearly only specific to necessary general knowledge, or pursuit of a specific career or interest.

Clearly specified as necessary general knowledge? That's backward reasoning. General knowledge is whatever we teach to the general population. If we stop requiring one subject and then forced them another then that would be general knowledge instead. Just because something was done in the past does not mean it is correct. And if it's pursuit of a specific career then again it does not pertain to everyone just by the mere word specific in front of pursuit and not the word general.

Finally, the argument that the public school system does not do enough to prepare its students for the, "real world," and help them to gain employment after High School can be dismissed as Joint Vocational Schools and other comparable systems exist to do just that.

Does not prepare individuals for the real world? What about the use of credit cards? Savings? There is a problem with debt in this country. Also, real world includes more than just gainful employment. Vocational schools are an alternative not a replacement. If they were I would have just recommended all schools be replaced by vocational schools and I have not.

The High School curriculum is designed to give students the opportunity to take classes and earn credits that they are required to have for admission into many four-year colleges and universities. It is for that reason that such courses should continue to be offered as many students have a desire to further their education past the secondary level. If there are any discrepancies with the generally used High School curriculum, they exist only because colleges set their admissions criteria too high and require that too many classes related to a specific field of interest be taken. There are alternatives to these high-level courses for students that wish to simply graduate High School and proceed into the workforce.

Everything that is wrong with college persists in high school. Just because universities are wrong does not mean we have to make high school wrong. Colleges will have to follow high schools. State colleges will obviously follow by nature and private schools would follow suit as individuals realize the futility in taking useless meaningless classes. Private schools will do whatever the public demands. If they do not they will not survive and a school that meets the demands will. Again, we are arguing the current curriculum of high school is correct – not whether heavily biased higher institutions in seek of money find the high school curriculum correct.

No system can be perfect, but I believe the system used by the Buckeye Local High School, located in Jefferson County, Ohio, in conjunction with the Jefferson County Joint Vocational School is an excellent system currently in place which supports the needs of as many students as possible.

Students being forced to take unnecessary, meaningless, and futile classes in replace of classes that are meaningful and useful is not an excellent system by any means. I do not see how an individual could even rationally argue otherwise.

Ohio has one of the worst foreclosure rates in the country. And many of the individuals had no idea about loans, savings, or anything about future interest rates. How can one conclude that the current system in place supports these students for the future when it has not worked in the past? History repeats itself unless individuals learn from their mistakes - and having a course on something so trivial instead of something meaningful and useful in our country like understanding money seems bizarre in our current economic situation.

1. Ohio (http://www.morganquitno.com/edrank02.htm)
2. No Students Left Behind (http://www.ecs.org/clearinghouse/39/83/3983.pdf)
Loren646

Posts: 80
Joined: Sat Dec 06, 2008 10:15 am

### Re: The Structure of Public School

Whether or not the universities actually do follow the high school curriculum or vice versa should not dictate what is actually useful in a childhoods education. If all universities required and forced every student to learn meaningless information we should not sit helplessly agreeing with them. Just because everyone else does it - does not mean we sheepishly follow. We are not arguing "should universities dictate what we teach our children?" We are arguing "whether or not the current system is flawed by forcing students to take useless classes." Most universities goal is to attract more students. The more students that the university gets the more money it obtains. Of course they are going to require students to take more courses and be in the university as long as possible by taking a variety of courses and in much depth as possible as it means more money to them

First of all, if the question is, "whether or not the current education system is flawed by forcing students to take useless classes," I have already proved and will continue to prove that the High Schools do not force the students to take these, "useless," upper-level classes to whcih you refer. Secondly, these classes are geared toward college entrance requirements, if being admitted into college is a useless endeavor, then the classes would be useless, however, over half of the High School students aspire to go to college, therefore taking classes that will get a student into college is not a useless thing to do.

Let us assume for the moment that the college and university entrance requirements remains unchanged. This being the case, let us also imagine a high school where the highest level Math class that is offered is Algebra I. I call for speculation here, but I do not imagine that very many students coming out of this High School (whose highest Math class is Algebra I) are going to proceed to prestigious colleges. In fact, if we assume that this same school only requires one year of Science (as my opponent suggests school systems should) and that class not being upper-level, it can be assumed that very few students from this school will be admitted to four-year colleges or universities at all as very few entrance requirements will be satisfied.

To answer to the goal of the Universities to attract more students, and as a result, more money, one can assume that the softer a specific colleges entrance requirements, the easier for a student coming out of High School to be admitted to said college, so by softening entrance requirements, the college or university could very easily make more money.

As far as the course load of any specific college or university is concerned, I will not answer to that because it is both off-topic and irrelevant to the discussion of High School curriculum.

Ultimately, the usefullness of the upper-level classes is based on the fact that they are necessary should one wish to be admitted into college, and the higher the level of the class is, generally the better the college one can be admitted to.

We, as a general population deem what is appropriate and useful for our children.

When we realize as a society that these courses offer no real term value we will dictate what universities teach by dictating what high schools teach.

By my opponent's own standard, if the general population felt that the current classes, requirements, and course loads were not, "Appropriate and useful," then we, the general population would have changed them by now. Since I argue that the education system is at its best the way it currently is, my opponent's statements, by definition, are indicative of the fact that the general population must agree with my standpoint, or we would have already dictated to the High Schools that something else must be taught.

Either way, if we already establish that these students are not finding any use for these courses ever in their lifetime in high school why are we forcing them to take it in college too? Is it so these organizations could make more money? Just because they tell us to? Are we suppose to just do something totally irrational and wrong just because they say so? Does that make it right?

I will not respond to any of these questions because all statements regarding the current course load as required by colleges and universities are irrelevant to the discussion, which is, our ideal vision of the high school curriculum.

The fact that the High School curriculum is based upon college entrance requirements is nothing more than an intelligent and advisable decision made by the high school. If colleges and universities ceased to require upper-level science and mathematics for admission, I would agree with my opponent that the course offerings and requirements of High School should be softened, since this is not the case however, a High School must put its students in a position where they can get into colleges and universities.

Whether or not the college and university entrance requirements need to be changed is completely irrelevant to this discussion.

We as americans should hold ourselves to a higher standard and we should not just follow the herd mentality and orders of large companies - we should be doing what's right - and that's teaching our future generation things that are necessary in their lives (like credit and savings - who wants to have a foreclosed home? who wants their child to be an indentured servant to the credit card companies cause of debt?). Instead we fill their heads with much less important information - knowing geometry isn't going to help them when they are living paycheck to paycheck (but knowing about savings will). If a child wants to pursue a subject more deeply such as mathematics he is also able to without the interference and disruption of those who do not care for it. We should not waste these children's time on futile endeavors when they could be focusing on more important and life impacting courses in their lives. There is an opportunity cost here.

Knowing geometry will not help individuals who work at levels where they are living paycheck-to-paycheck, I agree with my opponent regarding that point. Knowing Geometry will, however, assist an individual with getting accepted into a college or university where they can take the steps necessary to get a Degree and subsequently a job where they make enough money not to be required to live from paycheck-to-paycheck.

In terms of Math classes that stress credit and savings, I would ask that my opponent, judges, and spectators alike be referred to the curriculum that I have posted a link to, it is the second link of my thesis. On that link you will see the following class which the High School I am citing as an example offers:

Math 10
The goal of this course is to provide students with the tools that they will need to function as independent, employable and contributing citizens. Students will learn life skills such as shopping, maintaining a home, budgeting and paying taxes. Emphasis will be placed on skills necessary to prepare students for the Ohio Graduation Test. Note - Sophomore Math course.

Math 11
This course combines the skills learned in Math Skills and Consumer Mathematics to function as independent, productive members of society. Previously learned skills will be applied in real life situations such as home improvement, adjusting recipes, spending and earning money, travel and leisure activities, insurance, and us­ing energy. Note - Junior Math course.

Exactly. What universities require is not necessarily correct. And in fact wrong and should be changed as well. But only as a society can we dictate what is taught and not taught at the university level. At many of the leading private institutions it would cost over $160,000 to graduate (not including graduate school or law school could rack up a total of$250,000). Why are we forcing our children to live in unnecessary debt? We force them to pay for so many courses that are trivial and useless to them. Why are we forcing these individuals to take these classes? Why are we forcing them into their adult lives with such an absurd amount of debt ($250,000 for school +$200,000 for a house – this is almost a half a million dollars of debt!)?

First of all, I never directly stated or insinuated in any way that the entrance requirements of colleges and universities are or are not correct, I simply stated that much of the high school curriculum is based upon getting a student into college, which is the next logical step for the majority of students who choose to further their education after High School.

I would also like to point out that the cost of attending a college or university is completely irrelevant to this debate which is supposed to be on the ideal High School curriculum. Also, the debt that students have against them coming out of college is equally irrelevant to the topic of the High School Curriculum.

So by your logic, if some colleges requires them we force each and every students to take it. So why don't we force trigonometry and calculus on every student like we force these other subjects? !)?

My logic has nothing to do with that. I have already conclusively proven that at least one High School does not even force its students into taking Algebra I. My opponent has suggested that there are High Schools that force students to take Algebra II, but has failed to cite any examples of such.

We do not because it is not necessary for most individuals. And that's my argument, that if it's not useful for most of the students - we should not require it. Again this points to the little comic above posted on why the kid should learn algebra and the teacher replies because it's on the test in six weeks. Same situation here. Why should they learn this course? Cause it's required of the college? That does not make it right. And again as people who pay for universities and taxes as a whole we dictate what universities as well as high schools should teach.

Upper-level math and science classes are necessary for individuals that intend to go to a good college or university. For students not intending to go to college or to a university they are by no means forced to take such classes.

I love how you have chosen a state in the middle of nowhere and one that is not heavily focused on their education. The state of Ohio is not renowned for their public education system - i think it's more of their sports program (Go Buckeyes!), don't you agree? I know it is commonly listed very low on a state by state comparison even when compared with the bottom half ([1] Ohio is ranked 41 out of 50 states)? Why didn't you choose a state like MA, NJ, or even NY?

I would ask my opponent how can Ohio be considered, "The Middle of Nowhere?" According to the April 2000 census report, Ohio is the seventh most populous of any U.S. state. As of 2000, Ohio also has five of the Top 100 most populous cities in America (Columbus, Cleveland, Cincinnati, Toledo and Akron.) While it is true that the State of New York boasted (as of 2000) the third-highest population of any state and has six cities representing the Top 100 Biggest Cities, Massachusettes and New Jersey are the thirteenth and ninth most populous cities, respectfully, and each only have one of the Top 100 most populous cities as of 2000.

By definition, in terms of both general population and populous city strength, Ohio is, "bigger," than both New Jersey and Massachusettes.

I would also like to add that the Ohio State Buckeyes field various teams at the collegiate level, which is completely irrelevant to High School or this discussion.

Are you conceding that foreign language is not a course that should be deemed necessary since you are basing the curriculum requirements on this high school? Because if you are, you are agreeing it is not useful to most individuals. And as such they should not include it. Yet, many high schools do require foreign language as a requirement. And many more states are following this trend as the No Student Left Behind Act (2) that Bush signed focuses heavily on foreign language. And every year more and more states are pushing for foreign language requirements.

I stated that Buckeye Local High School is my model for what I deem to be a school system that benefits the most indivduals. If my opponent, the judges and spectators alike will please refer to the second link in my thesis it will be shown that three credits in the same foreign language are necessary to achieve an Honors Diploma.

I concede nothing with respect to foriegn language, except for the fact that it is offered by this High School, and is a requirement of many colleges (Link one of my thesis) for admission. I will agree with my opponent, however, that foreign language is not useful to many individuals, for instance, individuals who are not planning to go to college or to a university do not need a foreign language because it is not a requirement.

I would also like to add that my thesis is based upon my model, Buckeye Local High School which is located in Jefferson County, Ohio. Buckeye Local High School does not presently require that a foriegn language be taken in order to graduate. What other states, counties, or school districts are doing (whether it be in the majority or not) is not relevant because it discredits in no way my stance that Buckeye Local High School is a good model.

If anything, my opponent should agree that BLHS is a good model because they do not require a foriegn language to graduate.

You said there is a debate whether classes like algebra 2, trig, precalc, calc, ect. are forced among students. There is no debate to this. They are forced upon millions of individuals. Even in the odd example high school you have chosen, what are the requirements? It says 3 credits of math. It does not say "once you take algebra 1 you are done with math." If they meant only up to an algebra level they would have clearly stated that in the requirements.

If you will refer to my second link and look under Physical Science, you will note that there is a statement which specifically says, "This course is required for all freshmen," that having been said, if Algebra I, or any other upper-level math class was a, "requirement," the website would clearly state as much.

Of course it does not say, "Once you take Algebra 1 you are done with math," there are two reasons it does not say this:

1.) Three math credits are required to graduate, therefore, you could not simply take
Algebra I, without taking any other math class, and expect to graduate.

2.) As I previously stated, Algebra I is not a required course for graduation at Buckeye Local High School.

Many students go into High School having already taken geometry and algebra 1. And as such, when they enter high school they are required to take 3 more math credits. If they have already taken these lower level math classes then when they enter high school they would be forced to take these high level classes by default.

This is blatantly incorrect. Three math credits are required to graduate from Buckeye Local High School regardless of whether or not you obtained those credits prior to entering High School, or the Buckeye Local website would have specifically stated that you are to take, "Three math classes," as opposed to, "3 math credits."

To answer to the statement of being forced into taking higher level classes, my opponent seems to make the assumption that when an individual takes Algebra, that individual (for example) would have no alternative but to proceed into Geometry. This is blatantly untrue. An individual could take Algebra I and choose to take Math 10 the following year, or this individual could take Integrated Geometry.

A credit is a credit, just because an individual takes a certain class does not mean that they (by necessity) have to move to the next class up.

Again, you have chosen the easiest courses - not required courses. Just because some individuals can get away with these easy courses does not mean all individuals can get away with it. Again, if someone comes in with algebra and geometry already taken in middle school they must take a higher level.

There are no required math courses at this High School, an individual is required to have three math credits, if any specific courses were required the website would have said so just as it did with the Physical Science example.

Once again, an indivdual that took Algebra in Middle School is not forced to take higher level math classes in high school. If that individual did well in Algebra it may be something to consider, but they are not forced into it. These lower-level Math classes exist so that individuals who are unable or unwilling to take higher-level math classes can earn the necessary math credits for graduation. And all of these classes are practical to everyday life.

This is taken from a Kentucky High School – frequently asked questions (FAQ) that would apply to this high school as well as the requirements are the same “3 credits of math”:

"What mathematics courses are required for the graduating class of 2012? Answer: Students are required to have three credits in mathematics and to take mathematics every
year."

Again, they are required every year to take a math course and must pass three of them. Next question.

"Question: If students receive credit for Algebra I or Geometry in middle school, do they still need to
take mathematics every year in high school?
Answer: 704 KAR 3:305 states that students must take mathematics every year of high school. That is
different than a requirement that students receive four years of high school math credit. If a student is
enrolled in a high school for any given year, he/she must take mathematics that year."

Would you like to continue to debate over facts? We can do this all day. We can debate whether or not Obama was elected president or how about whether or not Paris is the capital city of France?

Can you please cite your source? Your first link goes to the Smartest State information where you found that Ohio is the fourty-first smartest state. By the way, did you happen to check out the criteria by which Ohio is the forty-first smartest state, because here it is from the same website:

1. Public Elementary and Secondary School Revenue per $1,000 Personal Income (Table 60) + 2. Per Pupil Public Elementary and Secondary School Current Expenditures (Table 114) + 3. Percent of Public Elementary and Secondary School Current Expenditures used for Instruction (Table 136) + 4. Public High School Graduation Rate (Table 177) + 5. Percent of Population Graduated from High School (Table 183) + 6. Percent of Public School Fourth Graders Proficient or Better in Mathematics (Table 197) + 7. Percent of Public School Eighth Graders Proficient or Better in Mathematics (Table 205) + 8. Percent of Public School Fourth Graders Proficient or Better in Reading (Table 213) + 9. Percent of Public School Eighth Graders Proficient or Better in Reading (Table 221) + 10. Percent of Public Elementary and Secondary Teachers Who Received Training on How to Teach Students with IEP's (Table 298) + 11. Average Salaries of Public School Classroom Teachers (Table 340) + 12. Average Teacher Salary as a Percent of Average Annual Pay of All Workers (Table 342) + 13. Percent of School-Age Population in Public Schools (Table 416) + 14. High School Drop Out Rate (Table 190) - 15. Percent of Public School Teachers Who Stated that Physical Conflicts Among Students Were a Serious Problem in Their Schools (Table 257) - 16. Percent of Public School Teachers Who Reported Being Physically Attacked in the Past 12 Months (Table 260) - 17. Percent of Public School Teachers Who Stated that Routine Duties and Paperwork Interfere with Their Job (Table 357) - 18. Percent of Public Elementary and Secondary School Staff Who are School District Administrators (Table 359) - 19. Estimated Pupil-Teacher Ratio in Public Elementary and Secondary Schools (Table 369) - 20. Average Class Size in Public Elementary Schools (Table 392) - 21. Average Class Size in Public Secondary Schools (Table 394) - Please let it be noted by judges, spectators and my opponent alike that curriculum does not play any role whatsoever into the determination of what State is the smartest.(1) Your second link goes to foriegn language requirements, so can you please site your source for the Kentucky statistics? When you do, I will respond to that information. Very esoteric of you - “real word” problems. Care to name when I might need to geometrically prove that triangles with the points ILP and XYZ are congruent given that LP bisects XY? And when I would need to solve for the Pythagorean theorem in a “real world” application? Pythagorean theorem, I must have missed that in the course description because it isn't there. Did you go to Buckeye Local High School? You must have because you seem to think you have a good idea of what specifically is taught in their classes. The bottom set of classes focus on general mathematical principles as well as consumer and household mathematics. If the bottom set of classes were taken, the student would also have suffcient Math credits to graduate. The requirements you have posted must include 3 credits of mathematics AND 3 credits of science. Not either or so it is not sufficient math credits to graduate. I listed two sets of three math classes. By, "The bottom set of classes," I was referring to the set that was listed on the bottom of the two sets. Affects our day to day living? There are millions of things that affect our day to day living. Cars affect our day to day living. Pets affect our day to day living. What is the standard here? There has to be a standard that we measure our courses and decide whether or not they should be taught in school. Their application to real life could be one standard. And one that I strongly support in my position. There are standards, yours: "When will I need this in my life?" "...actually useful to them in their own lives..." "...relevant to profession, personal-lives or well-being..." "...provides utility for the general population..." All of those statements when combined break-down to, "Affects our day-to-day living." Buckeye Local High School offers courses that teach us how to handle things that affect our day to day living, Buckeye Local High School is doing the right thing by your standards. Buckeye Local High School does not force a foreign language on people, require upper-level math classes, require upper-level science classes nor does Buckeye Local High School force students to take, "Useless," classes that they do not want to take. Health (1/2) Credit: Health: It can be generally accepted that fitness, nutrition, exercise, appearance and many other aspects of this course have an impact on our day-to-day lives and affect us everyday. Interesting... “impact on our day-to-day lives” This is exactly what my position supports – courses that have a true impact on our day to day lives. Absolutely. That is why I included both health and physical education as courses required to graduate when selecting my school of choice. In addition to that, I also stated that I felt only having to earn a half credit in these courses is a little soft. In short, I was agreeing with you regarding one aspect of your opinion, the need for physical education courses, I am allowed to agree with aspects of your opinion, am I not? Physical Education (1/2 Credit): Physical Education I (9 Week Course) Physical Education I is offered to all students to meet the state requirement for graduation. The purpose of this course is to have both boys and girls participate in various indoor and outdoor physical activities and recreational games. Physical education is designed simply to instruct students as to the importance of exercise. When the current obesity rate in America is taken into consideration, one could argue that the demand of health and physical education courses in terms of credit earned is a little weak. again this has a direct impact on the lives on individuals. Actually a very important impact as many life threatening diseases are linked to obesity levels such as heart disease and diabetes which are extremely prevalent in the U.S. Oddly, classes with such impact and importance in our lives - classes such as health and physical education are only ½ credit each... Physical education class is only worth one half of one credit because it is only nine-weeks long. Other classes that are worth a full credit are one-semester long. Nine weeks is one half of one semester, hence, a half credit. That's good. Electives do not pertain to our discussion. Only requirements. It is a requirement at Buckeye Local High School that fourteen electives be taken. As a result, when I discuss electives I am still discussing requirements as electives are required. That is pertinent to our discussion. At least this vocational school can see the importance of government and american history and the irrelevance like upper level mathematics for most individuals. However, vocational schools are for people who want a vocation after school typically in a labor intensive field. That is not what I'm debating here. I'm not arguing whether the course offers them these professional skills. Again most of these skills are not necessary for the general population. I'm arguing that schools teach individuals only pertinent and useful information to the general population. For example, we should not be teaching useless information to the general public like how many elements are in the periodic table of elements. Are job skills suddenly not necessary for the general population? Do you suggest that a high school curriculum be comprised exclusively of general knowledge without any career-related avenues of study? Vocational schools do not take into account the guy who wants to pursue mathematics but not take biology. It does not take into account the biologist who doesn't want or need to take calculus. It does not take into account the politician who does not need chemistry. Vocational school is not a replacement for a high school education – it is an alternative and should be deemed as such. Biology and Calculus are both not required courses at Buckeye Local High School. Chemistry is not a required course at Buckeye Local High School. If Joint Vocational School is an, "Alternative," then why do they issue High School Diplomas as opposed to, "Alternative to High School Diploma?" In conclusion, the argument that High Schools require an abundance of upper-level (and therefore, unnecessary) courses can be dismissed because it has been conclusively proven that an individual can graduate high school without even having taken Algebra I. I'm not debating that fact anymore as I've already proven my point. But I wanted to point out how you've been making exaggerated claims and illogical and incorrect conclusions based on your reasoning. For example: An asthmatic person who has to take several puffs of the inhaler to survive can be dismissed because it has been conclusively proven that an individual can survive without even taking 1 puff. Don't you see the illogical conclusion? Just because an individual can survive without even taking 1 puff does not mean ALL asthmatic people can survive by taking no puffs. From your premise you can not “conclusively prove” that statement (even if you were correct) as you've incorrectly stated. Not every individual can survive without an inhaler. Every student that goes to Buckeye Local High School can graduate without even taking Algebra I. Does not prepare individuals for the real world? What about the use of credit cards? Savings? There is a problem with debt in this country. Also, real world includes more than just gainful employment. Vocational schools are an alternative not a replacement. If they were I would have just recommended all schools be replaced by vocational schools and I have not. Feel free to read the course descriptions, there are courses available at Buckeye Local High School that teach just those things. Everything that is wrong with college persists in high school. Just because universities are wrong does not mean we have to make high school wrong. Colleges will have to follow high schools. State colleges will obviously follow by nature and private schools would follow suit as individuals realize the futility in taking useless meaningless classes. Private schools will do whatever the public demands. If they do not they will not survive and a school that meets the demands will. Again, we are arguing the current curriculum of high school is correct – not whether heavily biased higher institutions in seek of money find the high school curriculum correct. The high school curriculum is based on the college entrance requirements, not the other way around. High Schools have to follow what the colleges go by, high school students graduate high school and go to college, not the other way around. Students being forced to take unnecessary, meaningless, and futile classes in replace of classes that are meaningful and useful is not an excellent system by any means. I do not see how an individual could even rationally argue otherwise. I agree to an extent. At what point are you going to show me where Buckeye Local High School forces students to take, "unnecessary and meaningless," classes? Ohio has one of the worst foreclosure rates in the country. And many of the individuals had no idea about loans, savings, or anything about future interest rates. How can one conclude that the current system in place supports these students for the future when it has not worked in the past? History repeats itself unless individuals learn from their mistakes - and having a course on something so trivial instead of something meaningful and useful in our country like understanding money seems bizarre in our current economic situation. [/quote][/quote] The Ohio foreclosure rate is irrelevant to this discussion. First of all, not everyone that lives in Ohio is originally from Ohio or was educated in the State of Ohio. Secondly, not everyone that lives in Ohio and has been foreclosed on is from Jefferson County or the Buckeye Local School District. Finally, of all the people in Ohio who have been foreclosed on very few attended either Buckeye Local High School or the Jefferson County JVS. To conclude my first rebuttal, much of what my opponent has argued has either been irrelevant to the topic, an assumption or has related to statistics taken from the State of Ohio, but not specifically to Buckeye Local High School or the Jefferson County JVS. My opponents opinions regarding college entrance requirements are irrelevant to the topic because we are not here to discuss what should or should not be required for college entry, we are here to debate what should or should not be on the High School curriculum. My standpoint remains firm that if there are classes offered on the High School curriculum that are contingent with college and university admission, then those classes should remain until college admission standards are changed. A High School that does not offer a course load that will enable its students to get into a college or university is not at all beneficial to those wishing to pursue higher education. My opponent has made assumptions about the State of Ohio being a, "middle-of-nowhere," state. Not only to I consider these statements disrespectful to myself and to others from Ohio, but that statement is also statistically incorrect as I have proven that Ohio is the seventh most populous state in the U.S. and have also proven that the State if Ohio includes five cities that are among the United States of America's Top 100 most populous cities. My opponent has assumed that the Ohio foreclosure rate can be directly attributed to Buckeye Local High School and the Jefferson County Joint Vocational School and those statements are incorrect. My opponent, Loren646, has also assumed awareness of the specific items taught in classes at Buckeye Local High School, unless my opponent has attended Buckeye Local High School and taken such classes, such assumptions should not be made. In the event my opponent has attended Buckeye Local High School, I would ask that my opponent make a transcript available to myself and the judges proving such. My opponent has assumed that classes at Buckeye Local High School do not teach people about savings and loans, foreclosures, money management and other day-to-day things when the curriculum (which I have posted a link to) directly states otherwise. My opponent has assumed, based on the website that my opponent posted a link to, that the rank of the State of Ohio as it relates to the, "Smartest State Award," is reflective directly of Buckeye Local High School and the Jefferson County Joint Vocational School. Moreover, if anyone is to look at the link that I posted, they will see that the basis of the, "Smartest State Award," indicates that of twenty-one categories, only four are exclusively related to High Schools and zero are in anyway related to High School curriculums. For what few statistics my opponent has mentioned that are relevant to the topic, none of them relate to Buckeye Local High School or the Jefferson County Joint Vocational school, specifically, but rather to the State of Ohio as a whole. I would remind my opponent that my thesis is based on the education curriculum of Buckeye Local High School and the Jefferson County Joint Vocational School, and not on the State of Ohio as a whole. My opponent so far has used general statistics to critique my very specific educational model. Where I have provided actual facts, figures, curriculums and examples, my opponent has given you cartoons and assumptions. I will agree that my opponent makes a very good case for softening college entry requirements, my opponent also makes a fair case for the State of Ohio education on the whole. However, I am here to discuss the curriculum of the Buckeye Local High School in conjunction with the Jefferson County Joint Vocational School. The State of Ohio is not my model for doing so, nor are we here to discuss college entrance requirements. To this point, I believe I have provided a viable educational model that is of benefit to many students and caters to many different types of students. I further believe that I can defend every class that is offered on that curriculum and what few are required. The mere stating of the opinion that college entrance requirements are too high-level has no bearing on the fact that the goal of a High School is (and should be) to provide a gateway to college for those that wish to further their education and my model offers classes that do just that. I challenge my opponent not only to prove otherwise, but to do so by attacking the merits of the curriculum, not the State of Ohio's graduation rate. I challenge my opponent to accept the fact that a High School that has students that want to go to college tries to get those students into college, without going off-topic and discussing the unrelated point of what college entrance requirements should or should not be. I challenge Loren646 in the conclusion to refrain from disrespecting the state of Ohio by using terms such as, "Middle of Nowhere," and by extension, disrespecting me. EDIT: My apologies to all concerned, this post has been edited because I made a mistake with my quoting where my statements appeared to be Loren646's and vice-versa in one section. "Love is the gravity of the Soul" - Abstract -/-/1988 - 3/11/2013 R.I.P PavlovianModel146 Ringing The Bell Posts: 7084 Joined: Tue Jul 03, 2007 4:56 am Location: Ohio ### Re: The Structure of Public School Pavlovianmodel146 wrote:First of all, if the question is, "whether or not the current education system is flawed by forcing students to take useless classes," I have already proved and will continue to prove that the High Schools do not force the students to take these, "useless," upper-level classes to whcih you refer. Secondly, these classes are geared toward college entrance requirements, if being admitted into college is a useless endeavor, then the classes would be useless, however, over half of the High School students aspire to go to college, therefore taking classes that will get a student into college is not a useless thing to do. I never stated that college itself was useless only that many of the required courses they teach are useless. Just because universities currently require something does not in fact make the course practical and useful. Just because the school system is a certain way does not mean we can not change it. And if we went by your standards that students should take courses to get into college then we should require all students to take very advanced courses like Calculus and Physics. This would help them get them into college. Yet, in your position, you you are arguing that we require them to take courses that are useless and moreover which are not enough to help them get into good universities. Which do you want? 1. Force them to get into a good university by making them take the most advanced courses currently available or 2. Force them just to take the some of these useless courses that colleges require but not enough to get into a good university You seem to be arguing for number 2 here over and over by your examples of math courses and such yet you keep maintaining you want them to get into good colleges. You can't use examples that support 1 argument and erroneously try to use them to support the opposite argument. For example, in this case in your argument you are using examples to support the minimum to currently graduate high school but not the minimum to meet the good universities standards. Let us assume for the moment that the college and university entrance requirements remains unchanged. This being the case, let us also imagine a high school where the highest level Math class that is offered is Algebra I. I call for speculation here, but I do not imagine that very many students coming out of this High School (whose highest Math class is Algebra I) are going to proceed to prestigious colleges. In fact, if we assume that this same school only requires one year of Science (as my opponent suggests school systems should) and that class not being upper-level, it can be assumed that very few students from this school will be admitted to four-year colleges or universities at all as very few entrance requirements will be satisfied. You've been stating numerous times in your argument that a student only needs Algebra 1 or some other course to graduate. And you only want to require them the minimum. Yet your requirements are NOT enough to get into a top university. So why would you require them to make only a half-assed attempt to get into college? One either goes to college or they do not. There is no half way here. So why are you requiring half-assed requirements that do not help them get into a good university? And if you want to go ahead and assume things and make up situations. We'll go with the counter example. Let's assume colleges did not require students to take these courses to get into the university. Would you then say change the high school system so they wouldn't have to take these courses? If so, you are finally coming to terms with my position. To answer to the goal of the Universities to attract more students, and as a result, more money, one can assume that the softer a specific colleges entrance requirements, the easier for a student coming out of High School to be admitted to said college, so by softening entrance requirements, the college or university could very easily make more money. Are we debating whether Paris is the capital city of France again? You are trying to argue against a fact. Your conclusion no matter how reasonable you think it sounds is very incorrect. You are trying to argue against the law of supply and demand. Good luck with that. By softening entrance requirements the schools actually make less money. Compare a community college with really low requirements to a top university with very strict requirements. Which one is making more money? There are only a finite amount of kids in any given year who are going to go to college. But each university can control how many students they admit. By making it tougher and allowing fewer students in they actually make more money by charging more. Just take a look at the difference from tier 1 to tier 4 in usnews (1). What the universities are doing is making something rare so they could inflate the prices just like many corporations. By making something rare the price can be inflated for more of a profit – some companies or groups like De Beers or OPEC take it to the extreme where it would be illegal if they did in the U.S. Both these groups cut the supply to artificially increase their profit. Now let's look at another aspect why if they made it easier to get in they would make less money. Why do people go to universities in the first place? Most go to get a good job. A good company will only select universities that are difficult to get into because then it gives them more of an assurance that the student is hardworking and intelligent. So what does a university do? They make it so the requirements are higher which attracts the top companies and thus they can charge more to their students. It should be clear to you now that universities are in it for the profit and not necessarily always in it for the best interest of the student. So again we should not use them as the best indicator of what we should teach our children. Ultimately, the usefullness of the upper-level classes is based on the fact that they are necessary should one wish to be admitted into college, and the higher the level of the class is, generally the better the college one can be admitted to. “Ultimately the [usefulness] of upper-level classes... are [for]...college” That's the ultimate point? Should we not base merits on a class whether or not the actual material is useful? That would seem like the wise decision. By my opponent's own standard, if the general population felt that the current classes, requirements, and course loads were not, "Appropriate and useful," then we, the general population would have changed them by now. Since I argue that the education system is at its best the way it currently is, my opponent's statements, by definition, are indicative of the fact that the general population must agree with my standpoint, or we would have already dictated to the High Schools that something else must be taught. Obviously this is the system in place right now. Again, it doesn't mean it's correct. For example, society deemed slavery was okay a few hundred years ago. Did that make it correct? Nope. The fact that the High School curriculum is based upon college entrance requirements is nothing more than an intelligent and advisable decision made by the high school. If colleges and universities ceased to require upper-level science and mathematics for admission, I would agree with my opponent that the course offerings and requirements of High School should be softened, since this is not the case however, a High School must put its students in a position where they can get into colleges and universities. So you are starting to agree with me, already, excellent. But be careful with your words as I never said they should be softened. We should still demand a lot of our students but with usefulness in mind. Whether or not the college and university entrance requirements need to be changed is completely irrelevant to this discussion. Actually it's very relevant because you say the only reason to not change the high school requirement is because of colleges and universities. We could obviously just change both requirements at the same time. Knowing geometry will not help individuals who work at levels where they are living paycheck-to-paycheck, I agree with my opponent regarding that point. Coming to the light side, I see. Knowing Geometry will, however, assist an individual with getting accepted into a college or university where they can take the steps necessary to get a Degree and subsequently a job where they make enough money not to be required to live from paycheck-to-paycheck. By your logic here why don't we require them to take a higher level course because that would lead to degree from a better university and more pay? (I'm just pointing out the illogicalness of your point here) In terms of Math classes that stress credit and savings, I would ask that my opponent, judges, and spectators alike be referred to the curriculum that I have posted a link to, it is the second link of my thesis. On that link you will see the following class which the High School I am citing as an example offers: Math 10 The goal of this course is to provide students with the tools that they will need to function as independent, employable and contributing citizens. Students will learn life skills such as shopping, maintaining a home, budgeting and paying taxes. Emphasis will be placed on skills necessary to prepare students for the Ohio Graduation Test. Note - Sophomore Math course. Math 11 This course combines the skills learned in Math Skills and Consumer Mathematics to function as independent, productive members of society. Previously learned skills will be applied in real life situations such as home improvement, adjusting recipes, spending and earning money, travel and leisure activities, insurance, and us­ing energy. Note - Junior Math course. So formal, especially when asking everyone to observe your mistake. Nowhere above does it mention credit, loans, or even borrowing Yet you say these math classes stress it. First of all, I never directly stated or insinuated in any way that the entrance requirements of colleges and universities are or are not correct, I simply stated that much of the high school curriculum is based upon getting a student into college, which is the next logical step for the majority of students who choose to further their education after High School. So you agree the material they teach are things that are not useful to students? My logic has nothing to do with that. I have already conclusively proven that at least one High School does not even force its students into taking Algebra I. My opponent has suggested that there are High Schools that force students to take Algebra II, but has failed to cite any examples of such. *slams head against a rock* you did not conclusively prove it to any degree (and again even if you were correct, which you are not, your conclusion can not come from the premises you made) just because some students can pass the bare minimum math requirements in high school does not mean all students fit this model. I don't see why you would keep arguing this when I have proven that it may be required of some. However, you keep wanting to argue this point and put it in writing and making it obviously blatant to our readers that you are outright wrong on another fact. Not only do thousands of schools around the country require and force algebra 2 on some students but the ENTIRE state of Michigan requires Algebra II. Couldn't you have done a simple google search and save yourself the embarrassment of trying to go against facts? “The Michigan Merit Curriculum requires that while in high school a student complete four credits of math (including algebra I, geometry and algebra II, or an integrated sequence of this content, and also a fourth year of mathematics taken in the senior year of high school) “(2) And to personally add insult to injury even the high school you mention will require ALL students to complete Algebra II soon (3). Upper-level math and science classes are necessary for individuals that intend to go to a good college or university. For students not intending to go to college or to a university they are by no means forced to take such classes. read above... I would ask my opponent how can Ohio be considered, "The Middle of Nowhere?" According to the April 2000 census report, Ohio is the seventh most populous of any U.S. state. As of 2000, Ohio also has five of the Top 100 most populous cities in America (Columbus, Cleveland, Cincinnati, Toledo and Akron.) While it is true that the State of New York boasted (as of 2000) the third-highest population of any state and has six cities representing the Top 100 Biggest Cities, Massachusettes and New Jersey are the thirteenth and ninth most populous cities, respectfully, and each only have one of the Top 100 most populous cities as of 2000. By definition, in terms of both general population and populous city strength, Ohio is, "bigger," than both New Jersey and Massachusettes. interesting... let's actually find ohio on a map... I will agree with my opponent, however, that foreign language is not useful to many individuals, you're like a butterfly on a bright sunny day that's tearing away that ugly cocoon. And finally seeing the light If anything, my opponent should agree that BLHS is a good model because they do not require a foriegn language to graduate. Actually, since I stated my post and my position first you are by definition coming to an agreement on my position that we should not teach a futile class. But nice try though. . Once again, an indivdual that took Algebra in Middle School is not forced to take higher level math classes in high school. If that individual did well in Algebra it may be something to consider, but they are not forced into it. These lower-level Math classes exist so that individuals who are unable or unwilling to take higher-level math classes can earn the necessary math credits for graduation. And all of these classes are practical to everyday life. Again, you have failed to supply how algebra and geometry are sufficient to every day life. I'll wait. Pythagorean theorem, I must have missed that in the course description because it isn't there. Did you go to Buckeye Local High School? You must have because you seem to think you have a good idea of what specifically is taught in their classes. Where is the usefulness of this particular topic that is taught in algebra? And why did you blatantly ignore the geometry question as well? All of those statements when combined break-down to, "Affects our day-to-day living." Buckeye Local High School offers courses that teach us how to handle things that affect our day to day living, Buckeye Local High School is doing the right thing by your standards. Buckeye Local High School does not force a foreign language on people, require upper-level math classes, require upper-level science classes nor does Buckeye Local High School force students to take, "Useless," classes that they do not want to take. You are agreeing with me that they should not be teaching useless classes. However, they do teach a few – as I've already posted out. Absolutely. That is why I included both health and physical education as courses required to graduate when selecting my school of choice. In addition to that, I also stated that I felt only having to earn a half credit in these courses is a little soft. In short, I was agreeing with you regarding one aspect of your opinion, the need for physical education courses, I am allowed to agree with aspects of your opinion, am I not? Of course. You can always agree with my position in this debate. It is never to late to concede. Physical education class is only worth one half of one credit because it is only nine-weeks long. Other classes that are worth a full credit are one-semester long. Nine weeks is one half of one semester, hence, a half credit. Lol, I had a cartoon about the irony of it. They force several long years of useless courses into students yet a course that has so much impact in our lives that could reduce the risk of life threatening diseases like diabetes and heart disease is reduced to a requirement of only 9 weeks. Are job skills suddenly not necessary for the general population? Do you suggest that a high school curriculum be comprised exclusively of general knowledge without any career-related avenues of study? Where is this coming from? I've been extremely favorable of courses that pertain to usefulness. If Joint Vocational School is an, "Alternative," then why do they issue High School Diplomas as opposed to, "Alternative to High School Diploma?" It's an alternative now too. It's an alternate choice for an individual. My opponent, Loren646, has also assumed awareness of the specific items taught in classes at Buckeye Local High School, unless my opponent has attended Buckeye Local High School and taken such classes, such assumptions should not be made. In the event my opponent has attended Buckeye Local High School, I would ask that my opponent make a transcript available to myself and the judges proving such. Do you want my bank statement and social security number as well? [I have given you blah blah blah while] my opponent so far has used you cartoons and assumptions. Cartoons make it more entertaining. I took the time out to search for them to make the text more enjoyable to read. They are my gifts to the readers for taking their precious time in helping in this matter. To conclude my first rebuttal, much of what my opponent has argued has either been irrelevant to the topic, an assumption or has related to statistics taken from the State of Ohio, but not specifically to Buckeye Local High School or the Jefferson County JVS. My opponents opinions regarding college entrance requirements are irrelevant to the topic because we are not here to discuss what should or should not be required for college entry, we are here to debate what should or should not be on the High School curriculum. My standpoint remains firm that if there are classes offered on the High School curriculum that are contingent with college and university admission, then those classes should remain until college admission standards are changed. A High School that does not offer a course load that will enable its students to get into a college or university is not at all beneficial to those wishing to pursue higher education. My opponent has assumed that the Ohio foreclosure rate can be directly attributed to Buckeye Local High School and the Jefferson County Joint Vocational School and those statements are incorrect. For what few statistics my opponent has mentioned that are relevant to the topic, none of them relate to Buckeye Local High School or the Jefferson County Joint Vocational school, specifically, but rather to the State of Ohio as a whole. I would remind my opponent that my thesis is based on the education curriculum of Buckeye Local High School and the Jefferson County Joint Vocational School, and not on the State of Ohio as a whole. However, I am here to discuss the curriculum of the Buckeye Local High School in conjunction with the Jefferson County Joint Vocational School. The State of Ohio is not my model for doing so, nor are we here to discuss college entrance requirements. To this point, I believe I have provided a viable educational model that is of benefit to many students and caters to many different types of students. I further believe that I can defend every class that is offered on that curriculum and what few are required. The mere stating of the opinion that college entrance requirements are too high-level has no bearing on the fact that the goal of a High School is (and should be) to provide a gateway to college for those that wish to further their education and my model offers classes that do just that. I would like to remind the readers and judges that it is my opponent, Pavlovianmodel146, who is gone completely off tangent in this debate. This opponent outright challenged me and my position. But in fact my opponent has not even replied to my original post above nor even offered to counter my original position. Whether pavlovianmodel146 believe Buckeye is the perfect example for all schools is irrelevant. As an opponent who specifically challenged me with the intention to disprove my belief and my educational system pavlovianmodel146 has not done so in any real manner (poster did not even reply and give counterarguments to my original post). My position from the start has been we should not teach a class if it is useless to almost the entire general population and we should be teaching classes that are relevant to them instead. And from that – pavlovianmodel146's challenge to me was “I argue that such is not the case [with the current system]. My position is that we should take classes regarding specific subjects and complete certain academic tasks because it helps us determine what careers we would like to pursue and where our interests are. I further argue that it helps make us more well-rounded individuals and increases our open-mindedness.” By irrelevantly mentioning Buckeye and how it meets college demands my opponent has not proven against my case or even the basics of providing arguments for their own case. No where in my opponent's arguments has this individual stated and protected their school structure on “how classes determine career choice or interests.” Nor has my opponent proven the fact that these classes provide these individuals to be more well-rounded or increase their open mindedness (as stated by my opponent's challenge). Not once has my opponent replied to my original post nor stance. Instead this poster has decided to ignore my original position, ignore their position that they challenged me on and switched to an extremely meaningless position of “teach in high school cause college requires it.” In my opponent's posts they reiterate this over and over again yet it has no relevance to our discussion as they have not used it to defend their outright intentional challenge to me. It is my belief that my opponent went off tangent because they knew that they originally had a very weak position and argument against me (as I have been giving my points and reasoning my opponent has gradually started to agree with me). So I challenge you, pavlovianmodel146, to make a real argument against me and to really support your challenge that the current material and curriculum taught is useful to the general population (not whether the courses are needed for college. There is a huge distinction between these two sentences and the focus should be on - the “usefulness of the material” as per the challenge). As of now, you, pavlovianmodel146, have failed to provide evidence supporting your argument and position* and more importantly to this debate failed to attack my position which you have challenged me on. And as such, disbarring a miraculous final posting by you where you stay on topic, defend your position, and most significantly (the reason for the whole challenge and debate), be able to convincingly deconstruct my position, I should be declared the official winner of this debate. 1. USNews (http://colleges.usnews.rankingsandrevie ... nal_tier+1) 2. Michigan Law Requiring Algebra 2 (http://www.legislature.mi.gov/documents ... 6247-4.htm) 3. Algebra II in Ohio (http://www.tribtoday.com/page/content.d ... 13906.html) *pavlovianmodel146's “position is that we should take classes regarding specific subjects and complete certain academic tasks because it helps us determine what careers we would like to pursue and where our interests are. I further argue that it helps make us more well-rounded individuals and increases our open-mindedness.” Loren646, Consider Yourself Challenged (viewtopic.php?f=33&t=166483) Loren646 Posts: 80 Joined: Sat Dec 06, 2008 10:15 am ### Re: The Structure of Public School I would like to start off by addressing a point that Loren646 made regarding a Freudian Slip. Loren646 stated that I referred to High School as a, "laughing," pad for getting into college. If Loren646 had properly read the content of my first post she would see that my mistake was in typing, "launghing pad," not, "laughing," that is not a Freudian slip, that would be known as a typing error. Loren646 rebutted with a plethora of assumptions and statements completely unrelated to the actual curriculum that I described in my thesis. In addition to that Loren646 both insulted and disrespected the State of Ohio and by extension, disrespected me. I use the term disrespected because Loren646 referred to Ohio as a, "Middle of nowhere," state which I proved o be blatantly untrue. To make a truthful and accurate statement that is based in fact may often be harsh, but is not disrespectful depending on the tone of that statement, however, to dismiss an entire state because of a perceived and inaccurate notion is disrespectful. Loren646 has posted a very strong conclusion and final rebuttal that serves to hammer Loren646's point home. At the same time, though, the rebuttal tends to call for assumption in many aspects and takes many of the statements that I have previously made out of context. Loren646's previous statements have also been somewhat irrelevant to my curriculum as she has cited examples concerning the State of Ohio as a whole, many of which are completely immaterial to the Buckeye Local High School in conjunction with the Jefferson County Joint Vocational School and the curriculum thereof. In addition to that, Loren646 inaccurately refers to Massachusettes and New Jersey as states, "bigger," than Ohio and asks me why I do not use those states as an example. She later follows this by using the education system of the State of Kentucky as one of her examples. I intend to conclude by first acknowledging and defending my position against my opponents rebuttals. In so doing, I will further expand upon the points that I have made regarding my ideal curriculum as well as call into question specific aspects of Loren646's viewpoints with which I disagree. I never stated that college itself was useless only that many of the required courses they teach are useless. Just because universities currently require something does not in fact make the course practical and useful. Just because the school system is a certain way does not mean we can not change it. You are right in that you never did state that college itself is useless, however you are wrong for implying that I said or insinuated any such statement on your part because I did no such thing. I am well-aware that you called into question the entrance requirements of colleges and universities and not the existence of colleges and universities in general. I also agree that not every course taught by a college or university is practical and useful, however that is not what we are here to debate, we are here to debate High School curriculum. Finally, I never argued that the school system cannot be changed. I gave my example regarding Buckeye Local High School in conjunction with the Jefferson County JVS and stated that the system I gave (except for increasing the Health and Physical Education requirements) should not be changed, I did not say it cannot be changed. And if we went by your standards that students should take courses to get into college then we should require all students to take very advanced courses like Calculus and Physics. This would help them get them into college. Those are not my standards. My standards are that we should offer not require courses that will assist a student in getting accepted into a college or a university. While I do agree that Calculus and Physics can often assist a student in being admitted into a college or university, not all students should take those classes. For example, a student that does not intend to go to college would have little use for those classes, therefore, that student should only take those classes if that student wants to. Another example is a student that intends to go to a college or university that does not cite Calculus or Physics as an entrance requirement, in which case, that student should only take such classes if that students desires to do so. My standards are simply that courses that assist students that wish to go to colleges or universities (in general) or to a specific college or university should be offered, not required. My standards are also that a High School should cater to students that wish to further their education after High School Graduation. Simply put, a High School that does not at least offer courses that can lead to college admission is not going to serve to benefit the most students as many (more than half) of all High School students at least consider going to college. Yet, in your position, you you are arguing that we require them to take courses that are useless and moreover which are not enough to help them get into good universities Which do you want? 1. Force them to get into a good university by making them take the most advanced courses currently available or 2. Force them just to take the some of these useless courses that colleges require but not enough to get into a good university. It seems that what you are trying to do here is take an opinion regarding a specific point in my argument and apply it to my argument as a whole. Of course, you have shown a history of doing this by using the entire State of Ohio's academic record to discredit one specific High School in Ohio. First of all, I have never explicitly or implicitly stated that I want any group of students or individual student to be required to take advanced level classes. My argument is simply that provided the college entracnce requirements do not change (as they likely won't) that the High Schools continue to offer advanced level classes in order to give its students the opportunity to go to college. That is why I cited the Jefferson County Joint Vocational School. If you have an individual that exhibits a strength in welding, is interested in welding and intends not to go to college but rather to go straight into the job force after graduation, then that individual can go to the JVS, take welding, graduate High School and also obtain job pertinent licenses and certificates in the course of so doing. I would not suggest that this individual be forced to take any advanced level math classes, and in my ideal educational curriculum, the individual is not forced to do so. The simple fact is that not all High School students desire to go to college, and not all of them have the intellectual capability to do so. Some go to a traditional four-year college or university immediately, some go to a two-year or Community College, some go directly into the work force and some graduate and go to a trade school. My suggestion is simply that the required courseload of High Schools be such that an individual can gain knowledge that at the very least affects an individual's day-to-day life. I also argue that at the same time, the High Schools should continue to offer, on a strictly optional basis, as Buckeye Local High School does, advanced level classes that are indexed to college entrance requirements. By the way, some colleges have lower requirements than others, it is for that reason that the High School not force any students to take specific upper-level classes. A student can take whatever classes meet the entrance requirements to the specific college (s) to which he or she will be applying. In other words, my education curriculum serves the most possible people. The education curriculum cited by my opponent would not serve the most people. My opponent's education curriculum would result in a significant decrease of upper-level classes even being offered, and as a result, students would not necessarily be able to take the classes they need for admission into the college they desire. You've been stating numerous times in your argument that a student only needs Algebra 1 or some other course to graduate. And you only want to require them the minimum. Yet your requirements are NOT enough to get into a top university. So why would you require them to make only a half-assed attempt to get into college? One either goes to college or they do not. There is no half way here. So why are you requiring half-assed requirements that do not help them get into a good university? The tables seem to have turned, in this debate. Now, am I to believe that you are the one who is arguing that classes be offered that are indexed to the entrance requirements of colleges and universities? I am only requiring a courseload that is less than what the average college entrance requirements are because not every student intends to, or indeed is intellectually able to, go to college. There is no good reason for my system to force a mediocre student into taking Algebra II, if that student does not intend to go to college. With my system, students have the ability to dictate their futures for themselves, the student chooses how high he or she will aim. The student chooses whether he or she plans to pursue college by meeting entrance requirements, and if so, the student chooses what colleges' or universities' requirements he or she wants to meet. The student chooses whether he or she would like to learn a trade and obtain licenses and certifications to proceed with greater ease into the workforce from High School. In my system, a student can choose to learn only the basics of consumer math while becoming a certified and licensed cosmotologist, or a student has the opportunity to take the necessary courseload required to meet the entrance requirements of Ivy-League schools. My system gives students the power to decide what is best for them, your system dictates to them what is best for them. And if you want to go ahead and assume things and make up situations. We'll go with the counter example. Let's assume colleges did not require students to take these courses to get into the university. Would you then say change the high school system so they wouldn't have to take these courses? If so, you are finally coming to terms with my position. First of all, you previously in your conclusion argued that I am incorrect for not recommending that all students take classes indexed to college entrance requirements, now you are stating that they already have to take such courses, which by the way, you earlier said they do not. Anyway, in my model, the students already do not have to take a course load indexed to the average entrance requirements of a college or university. I would not say any such thing. I believe that the Ivy-League schools would continue to maintain a model for entrance requirements greater than that of the average college or university, since this is the case it would be best if the High Schools continue to offer courses that give students the ability to meet the entrance requirements of Ivy-League schools if the students should choose to do so. By the way, what assumptions have I made and what situations have I made up? Buckeye Local High School is a real High School with a real curriculum with which I have provided you, not a figment of my imagination. Are we debating whether Paris is the capital city of France again? You are trying to argue against a fact. Your conclusion no matter how reasonable you think it sounds is very incorrect. You are trying to argue against the law of supply and demand. Good luck with that.. I understand the law of supply and demand. There is no shortage of colleges and universities in the United States of America or abroad. Additionally, colleges and universities by softening entrance requirements (provided all of them took such action) would collectively give more students the opportunity to go to college, and as a result, make more money. Even though it is irrelevant to this topic I would also like to state that colleges and universities do not all exist solely for the purpose of making money, as my opponent seems to believe. Many colleges and universities are non-profit public colleges and universities who receive a substantial portion of their funding from states and from the national government. I would also like to add that Loren646 originally elected to bring up the amount of money made by colleges and universities which is in no way relevant to the topic of my specific model for a High School curriculum. By softening entrance requirements the schools actually make less money. Compare a community college with really low requirements to a top university with very strict requirements. Which one is making more money? There are only a finite amount of kids in any given year who are going to go to college. But each university can control how many students they admit. By making it tougher and allowing fewer students in they actually make more money by charging more. Just take a look at the difference from tier 1 to tier 4 in usnews. This whole line of discussion is completely irrelevant to the point of this debate, yet I will answer my opponent's statement. Top universities make more money because of a concept commonly referred to as, "exclusivity," there will very rarely be a shortage of students who desire to go to Harvard, Yale or Princeton, just to name a few. It is comparable to shoe brands, compare Nike with a generic shoe brand. Nikes are commonly accepted to be high-quality shoes which are a symbol of wealth and prestige, it is for that reason that many people desire to own Nikes and wear them proudly. Contrastly, the generic shoes which may cost as low as 20% the cost of a pair of Nikes are not a specifically demanded item, but the company producing the shoes will make more money if they are able to sell more shoes. In much the same way, Yale will still be Yale regardless of what the average college entrance requirements are. Yale will still have entrance requirements that are significantly more difficult to obtain than the average college or university and it will still be a sought after institution of academia for more students than it can possibly hold. Contrastly, a school like West Virginia Northern Community College is not specifically sought after on a nationwide basis, it is not considered amongst the elite. However, the more students West Virginia Community College admits, the more money West Virginia Northern Community College will make. What the universities are doing is making something rare so they could inflate the prices just like many corporations. By making something rare the price can be inflated for more of a profit – some companies or groups like De Beers or OPEC take it to the extreme where it would be illegal if they did in the U.S. Both these groups cut the supply to artificially increase their profit. De Beers and OPEC do not sell their goods in the U.S., where have I been? The universities such as Yale and Princeton are not cutting their supply to increase profit, a school can only physically maintain a certain amount of students. In addition to that, the size of classes is a huge factor when many students are determining where they wish to go to college, therefore, it is not to a school's benefit (in all cases) to increase class size. Yale, Princeton, Harvard and others are not rare because they intentionally made themselves rare. They are rare because they have a tradition of excellence, they have a tradition where students that go to those colleges succeed financially after they graduate and they are rare also because they are among America's most respected and oldest institutions. They are rare because by their own merits, they have created an atmosphere that is highly sought after and considered an honor to be a part of. They are rare because they accept only the best of the best and offer extremely high-level classes which you so arduously oppose, that is why they are rare, they just happen to make money in the process. Now let's look at another aspect why if they made it easier to get in they would make less money. Why do people go to universities in the first place? Most go to get a good job. A good company will only select universities that are difficult to get into because then it gives them more of an assurance that the student is hardworking and intelligent. So what does a university do? They make it so the requirements are higher which attracts the top companies and thus they can charge more to their students. I do not understand why we are debating the irrelevant topic of whether or not colleges should make their entrance requirements softer. Furthermore, I do not understand why you have switched your position from colleges making their requirements softer because their requirements entail the taking of unnecessary classes to insisting that entrance requirements should remain the same because it assists the colleges in making money. Anyway, not all colleges have the same entrance requirements. The entrance requirements posted on my link in my thesis related to the average entrance requirements for a college or a university. Some colleges have stiffer requirements, some colleges have softer requirements which is why a student should take courses appropriate for the admission requirements of the college that he or she wishes to attend. Once again, my model for the High School education system makes that possible. [/quote] It should be clear to you now that universities are in it for the profit and not necessarily always in it for the best interest of the student. So again we should not use them as the best indicator of what we should teach our children.[/quote] Non-profit universities by definition are not in it for the profit. You are also assuming that it is not possible to do what is best for the student simultaneous with making a profit which is assumption, incorrect assumption at that. “Ultimately the [usefulness] of upper-level classes... are [for]...college” That's the ultimate point? Should we not base merits on a class whether or not the actual material is useful? That would seem like the wise decision. Excellent, now instead of taking my statements out of context you have decided to take my individual words out of context. I refuse to dignify this paragraph with any further repsonse. Obviously this is the system in place right now. Again, it doesn't mean it's correct. For example, society deemed slavery was okay a few hundred years ago. Did that make it correct? Nope. My system is not in place right now. It is at Buckeye Local High School in conjunction with the Jefferson County Joint Vocational school, specifically, but not every school operates under my system. I believe that comparing my model for the education system to slavery is a little extreme. Especially when you consider the fact that my education system gives students the opportunity to pursue whichever life path they so choose when coming out of High School. I do not believe that many of the Confederate slave masters went to their slaves and asked, "Hey, would you prefer to pick cotton or would you rather harvest the corn, or if you want, you can learn to read so that you can become a teacher for the children?" So you are starting to agree with me, already, excellent. But be careful with your words as I never said they should be softened. We should still demand a lot of our students but with usefulness in mind. No, the further this debate has progressed the less I find myself agreeing with you. All that my statement means is that High Schools are wise to offer a variety of courses that will get their students into college. Whether or not the college entrance requirements are useful I stated is irrelevant because we are not here to debate what the college entrance requirements should or should not be. My statement is only that High Schools should give their students the opportunity to get into whatever college or university that they choose to attend, eliminating upper-level math or science courses would not satisfy that goal in any way. Actually it's very relevant because you say the only reason to not change the high school requirement is because of colleges and universities. We could obviously just change both requirements at the same time. I am very interested in hearing how this could be done, it's a shame that this debate cannot be extended. First of all, the private colleges can make their entrance requirements whatever they want their entrance requirements to be and no agency can change that. Secondly, the collective Boards of Education on all levels for High School do not operate directly with colleges, and for the most part, are not managed or in any way linked to the agencies that determine what entrance criteria should be for each individual college. The only way that both requirements could arbitrarily be changed simultaneously is if the United States Government decided to declare eminent domain on every college and university in the United States of America, (including the private ones) further decide that all of these individual entities are to be managed by the Federal government and to act as one and then decide to change the entrance requirements of the colleges. At the same time, the Federal government would have to declare that the public education system (typically micro-managed by states and counties) is completely under their control and will operate in accordance to and offer a curriculum that is indexed to college entrance criteria. I will now say to you, "Good luck with that." Knowing geometry will not help individuals who work at levels where they are living paycheck-to-paycheck, I agree with my opponent regarding that point. Coming to the light side, I see. No, I am not coming to your light. My educational system model does not require geometry to graduate, I am by no means agreeing with your side, here, that statement only serves to defend my model for the education system. It may be mute, at this point, but I would also like to mention that the statement was taken out of context. By your logic here why don't we require them to take a higher level course because that would lead to degree from a better university and more pay? (I'm just pointing out the illogicalness of your point here) The point is not illogical. We do not require students to take higher level courses in my model because not all students intend to go to college, nor are all students capable of going to college. Once again, in my model the student decides what he or she is capable of and what path he or she wants to pave for his or her life. In your model, what a student will or will not take in High School is still dictated to them. For instance, "The equivalent of five or six years of English," I can assure you that not everything learned in this classes will be applicable in day-to-day life. An individual can become literate with far less formal English study than what your model prescribes. I would ask you, if an individual can compose an intelligible and literate sentence and read at a respectable level, than what is the point of being able to define a past participle? So formal, especially when asking everyone to observe your mistake. Nowhere above does it mention credit, loans, or even borrowing Yet you say these math classes stress it. I call for speculation here, but I imagine that credit, loans and borrowing would be covered in consumer mathematics, after all, those are the kind of things a consumer would need to know about. By the way, budgeting is covered in Math 10, budgeting is inclusive to credit, loans and borrowing, is it not? So you agree the material they teach are things that are not useful to students? Wrong. I agree that it is useful for the purpose of meeting college entrance requirements. *slams head against a rock* you did not conclusively prove it to any degree (and again even if you were correct, which you are not, your conclusion can not come from the premises you made) just because some students can pass the bare minimum math requirements in high school does not mean all students fit this model. I agree that not all students can pass the bare minimum math requirements in my model, even though the bare minimum math requirements in my model do not require Algebra I, which you have not conclusively disproved. I have, however, conclusively proven it because Algebra I would be listed as a required class which it is not. Anyway, the model serves the most students, in my opinion, I never insinuated that it serves, "all," of them. Besides, if all students could pass the bare minimum math requirements, the graduation rate would be 100% and as such, graduating high school would mean absolutely nothing. I don't see why you would keep arguing this when I have proven that it may be required of some. However, you keep wanting to argue this point and put it in writing and making it obviously blatant to our readers that you are outright wrong on another fact. Not only do thousands of schools around the country require and force algebra 2 on some students but the ENTIRE state of Michigan requires Algebra II. Couldn't you have done a simple google search and save yourself the embarrassment of trying to go against facts? It would be required of some. It would be required by those who wish to meet the average entrance requirements of colleges and universities, but it is not a class that the High School itself requires you to take. I would make it known to the judges, spectators and especially to my opponent that the requirements of thousands of schools around the country individually or in combination with the requirements of the ENTIRE state of Michigan have exactly nothing to do with the requirements of Buckeye Local High School in conjunction with the Jefferson County Joint Vocational School located in the State of Ohio. I am not going against facts. I did not argue in any way what Michigan and, "thousands of schools around the country," do or do not require. I argued what Buckeye Local High School does or does not require, it is you who are going against facts. “The Michigan Merit Curriculum requires that while in high school a student complete four credits of math (including algebra I, geometry and algebra II, or an integrated sequence of this content, and also a fourth year of mathematics taken in the senior year of high school) “(2) And to personally add insult to injury even the high school you mention will require ALL students to complete Algebra II soon (3). I suppose it is a little late, but maybe I should let you know that your objective should be to discredit the curriculum of Buckeye Local High School located in Jefferson County, Ohio, anything Michigan does is unrelated and irrelevant. interesting... let's actually find ohio on a map... I give my opponent statistical facts regarding the State of Ohio, my opponent continues to disrespect my State of Ohio and disrespect me by extension. The irony here is that Loren646 accuses me of completely disregarding facts. Actually, since I stated my post and my position first you are by definition coming to an agreement on my position that we should not teach a futile class. But nice try though. I did not say foreign language should not be taught, what I said was foreign language should not be required. I also did not make any statement whatsoever describing foreign language as, "futile," or any word closely resembling futile. Again, you have failed to supply how algebra and geometry are sufficient to every day life. I'll wait. Loren, let's say that my checking account balance was$1,302.64 on December 17th, and between December 17th and today I wrote four checks. I was able to call my bank to obtain my current checking account balance, but I did not originally write down how much the third check was for and that is not on the bank's automated system. Although, I know the value of the first, second and fourth checks that I wrote. The problem is, I need to know how much that specific check was for because it was a purchase that I made for someone else and that person needs to reimburse me and I am going to see this person today (A Sunday) so the bank is closed. I do know that my new balance after writing these four checks is $373.24 Value of Check 1:$321.82
Value of Check 2: $172.12 Value of Ckeck 3: x (Unknown) Value of Check 4:$298.76

I could determine how much the check was worth with the following algebraic formula:

$1302.64 - ($321.82 + $172.12 + 298.76 + x) =$373.24

Which breaks down to:

$1302.64 - ($792.70 + x)= $373.24 Which is further reduced to:$1302.64 -$792.70 - x=$373.24

Further:

$509.94 - x =$373.24

Subtract $509.94 from both sides and: - x = -$136.70

Divide out the negative behind x and

x = $136.70 Hence,$136.70 is the value of the check.

Here is a use for geometry:

I am going to Lowe's to purchase some carpet because I plan to carpet a dining room. Carpet is sold by the square foot. If I do not know how to compute square footage I can very easily buy either too much or not enough carpet.

Where is the usefulness of this particular topic that is taught in algebra? And why did you blatantly ignore the geometry question as well?

What difference does it make, I have already proven that Algebra I is not necessary to graduate, nor is geometry.

You are agreeing with me that they should not be teaching useless classes. However, they do teach a few – as I've already posted out.

Here is my logic as simply as I can put it:

People that go to college and graduate have been statistically proven to generally make more money than people that do not go to college. Most colleges and universities have entrance requirements which are related to classes taken in High School. These High Schools offer the classes to help their students get accepted into colleges, hence, the classes are useful because graduating college (which first requires acceptance into a college) is useful.

Of course. You can always agree with my position in this debate. It is never to late to concede.

A very wise man once told me that the delivery of sarcasm is all about form. Don't worry, you'll get better with practice. Oh yes, and your statement above also takes my statement out of context where I stated that I agree with you regarding one specific aspect of your argument.

Lol, I had a cartoon about the irony of it. They force several long years of useless courses into students yet a course that has so much impact in our lives that could reduce the risk of life threatening diseases like diabetes and heart disease is reduced to a requirement of only 9 weeks.

I agree with you here, I believe I may have said as much already. I remember where I said that, in my thesis, when I stated that the lack of health and physical education requirements was the only aspect of Buckeye Local's system with which I disagree.

It's (Joint Vocational School) an alternative now too. It's an alternate choice for an individual.

As is going to college as opposed to going straight into the job force, or vice-versa, depending on how you look at it.

Do you want my bank statement and social security number as well? .

No, I requested your transcript from Buckeye Local High School because you give the impression that you know about what specific items are addressed in their classes.

Cartoons make it more entertaining. I took the time out to search for them to make the text more enjoyable to read. They are my gifts to the readers for taking their precious time in helping in this matter.

You should send them Christmas cards instead. I took out the time to search for actual facts and figures relevant to our topic for the readers for taking their precious time in helping in this matter.

I would like to remind the readers and judges that it is my opponent, Pavlovianmodel146, who is gone completely off tangent in this debate. This opponent outright challenged me and my position. But in fact my opponent has not even replied to my original post above nor even offered to counter my original position. Whether pavlovianmodel146 believe Buckeye is the perfect example for all schools is irrelevant. As an opponent who specifically challenged me with the intention to disprove my belief and my educational system pavlovianmodel146 has not done so in any real manner (poster did not even reply and give counterarguments to my original post).

I have both replied to my opponent's original post and countered my opponent's original position. My opponent probably did not notice because I did not use any cartoons, make nearly as many assumptions nor did the majority of my statements ring of sarcasm. In addition, at no point did I blatantly and flagrantly disrespect my opponent or where my opponent comes from. It can clearly be seen in my opening post in the conclusion where I gave my arguments against my opponents position and in subsequent posts defended same.

The basis of my argument is the fact that High Schools offer the courses that they offer to get students into college by offering courses relevant to college entrance guidelines. Furthermore, I argued that Buckeye Local High School has a viable educational system because it caters both to students who plan to go to college and students who will enter directly into the workforce without forcing any student to take a, "useless," class.

The students have the choice and take what classes they wish.

My position from the start has been we should not teach a class if it is useless to almost the entire general population and we should be teaching classes that are relevant to them instead.

Getting into college is not, "Useless to almost the entire general population," the schools teach classes that are generally required in college entrance criteria. There is no need to take the time to find an exact number, but I imagine that the number of colleges that will admit a student who only has one Math credit and one Science credit (as my opponent suggests High Schools should mandate) is dreadfully low.

And from that – pavlovianmodel146's challenge to me was “I argue that such is not the case [with the current system]. My position is that we should take classes regarding specific subjects and complete certain academic tasks because it helps us determine what careers we would like to pursue and where our interests are. I further argue that it helps make us more well-rounded individuals and increases our open-mindedness.”

I can promise the judges that if they peruse this debate thread with the utmost scrutiny that they will not find this statement except for as quoted by my opponent. That statement was made by me in an entirely different thread, is in no way relevant to this specific debate or my thesis for this debate and should be completely disregarded.

By irrelevantly mentioning Buckeye and how it meets college demands my opponent has not proven against my case or even the basics of providing arguments for their own case.

My mention of Buckeye Local High School is not irrelevant because Buckeye Local High School is my educational model as shown in my thesis! Does my opponent suggest that the very fact that I have an educational model is irrelevant?

Buckeye Local High School in conjunction with the Jefferson County Joint Vocational School is my case and my opponent has done nearly nothing to argue against it, as a result, I have not been put in a position where I have had to argue for it.

I have had to argue for the State of Ohio.
I have had to argue population size.
I have had to argue whether or not colleges are in it just for the money.
I have had to argue regarding the curriculum of other states.
I have had to argue what college entrance requirements should or should not be.

But, I have been very rarely put into a position where I had to argue in favor of my curriculum.

No where in my opponent's arguments has this individual stated and protected their school structure on “how classes determine career choice or interests.” Nor has my opponent proven the fact that these classes provide these individuals to be more well-rounded or increase their open mindedness (as stated by my opponent's challenge).

That quote used by my opponent was taken from another thread completely unrelated to this debate. That quote cannot be found anywhere in this debate forum and should be disregarded as not relevant to this debate or part of this debate.

Not once has my opponent replied to my original post nor stance. Instead this poster has decided to ignore my original position, ignore their position that they challenged me on and switched to an extremely meaningless position of “teach in high school cause college requires it.” In my opponent's posts they reiterate this over and over again yet it has no relevance to our discussion as they have not used it to defend their outright intentional challenge to me.

That position is not meaningless. College requirements are a big factor in why Buckeye Local High School offers the classes that it does. I also stated that the majority of colleges would not accept an individual who only has one Math and one Science credit. In short, if there was a High School that offered the curriculum my opponent suggests, very few, if any students would go to college after attending such a school as they would not be admitted.

Further, I do not understand why my opponent seems to resent being challenged to a debate, I suppose it is not relevant, but it may say something about my opponent and my opponent's confidence in his/her position.

Also, Loren646 acts as though the academic statistics (which were, once again, taken from an independent webiste and based in no way on High School curriculum) from the State of Ohio have any relevancy or bearing whatsoever on Buckeye Local High School. Buckeye Local High School contributes in a very small way, roughly 1/750th, to that result.

Loren acts as if the statistics and curriculums from completely different states have any relevancy or bearing on Buckeye Local High School, which they do not.

Loren acts as though changing the college entry requirements somehow pertains to this debate, which it does not.

And after all of this, Loren646 accuses my positions as being irrelevant. Due to the statements made by Loren646, I have spent the majority of my end of the debate arguing irrelevant positions initially brought up by Loren646.

It is my belief that my opponent went off tangent because they knew that they originally had a very weak position and argument against me (as I have been giving my points and reasoning my opponent has gradually started to agree with me).

I have not gradually started to agree with my opponent, my positions have gradually been further and further from those of my opponent. The tangents I have went off on have all been in response to initial statements by my opponent that are not relevant to this discussion and in no way discredit my vision for an ideal educational curriculum.

I would also like to add that my opponent has made a habit of sarcasm and disrespect throughout the course of this debate. I pointed out such disrespect in my rebuttal, and instead of apologizing or at the very least ignoring my statement, my opponent further disrespects my position, the State of Ohio, and myself by posting a chart stating Ohio is the, "Middle of Nowhere," as if it somehow constitutes a fact.

I have approached my opponent with census findings, an actual example of a curriculum, legitimate web-sources that have been used to illustrate facts and have even countered one of my opponent's points, with my opponent's own websource. In exchange, my opponent has brought assumption, sarcasm, insult and disrespect to this debate. Initially, if my opponent had not intended to disrepsect me, I would have simply brushed it off and left it for the judges to decide, but when I informed my opponent that I found statements made regarding the State of Ohio, "Middle of nowhere," disrespectful, my opponent willfully and maliciously continued to disrespect me.

So I challenge you, pavlovianmodel146, to make a real argument against me and to really support your challenge that the current material and curriculum taught is useful to the general population (not whether the courses are needed for college. There is a huge distinction between these two sentences and the focus should be on - the “usefulness of the material” as per the challenge).

Being admitted to college is useful to the general population, therefore, courses that will get an individual admitted to college are useful, I am certain the judges will find that to be simple logic.

I have made a real argument against my opponent, I have argued the following:

1. That my opponent's educational system is not currently satisfactory to college entrance requirements.

2. That my curriculum (a curriculum currently in use) does not force students to take, "Useless," classes.

3. That my curriculum assures freedom of choice for students where my opponent's curriculum does not as it dictates to a greater extent what classes will or will not be offered. My opponent's curriculum calls for a reduction of classes that are available to students.

4. I have argued that students in my curriculum are not forced to take, "Unnecessary," math or science courses.

The list goes on.

As of now, you, pavlovianmodel146, have failed to provide evidence supporting your argument and position* and more importantly to this debate failed to attack my position which you have challenged me on. And as such, disbarring a miraculous final posting by you where you stay on topic, defend your position, and most significantly (the reason for the whole challenge and debate), be able to convincingly deconstruct my position, I should be declared the official winner of this debate.

I have not failed to provide evidence supporting my opinion. My opinion is that a school sytem is best when it gives students the freedom to decide what they wish to do with their lives. My opinion is that a school system is best when it caters to all types of students. My opinion is that a school that does not meet college entrance requirements would not be beneficial to its students that wish to proceed to the next level.

My opponent suggests that I have failed to provide evidence supporting my argument and position because I have not supported my argument and position to my opponent's liking. A standard, I dare say, that is impossible to meet.

I do not understand why my opponent insists that the reason for the whole challenge and debate is most significant, but I will do as my opponent insists. The reason for this debate is because we had a fundamental disagreement regarding a very important issue and I believed that this would be a positive way to have a formal discussion with one another regarding that issue.

Finally, I have not failed to attack my opponent's position (s), my opponent has failed to attack mine in a relevant way. My opponent has cited examples that have absolutely nothing to do with the curriculum of Buckeye Local High School in conjunction with the Jefferson County Joint Vocational School. My opponent has very rarely, attacked my actual curriculum, and when my opponent has, the attacks have been based entirely on assumption or facts that are not relevant to my ideal curriculum. I have attacked my opponent's position on very basic, fundamental terms, that should be easy to see.

I made an attack on my opponent's curriculum in the conclusion of my thesis when I stated that certain arguments could be dismissed regarding my opponent's position.

I argued that my opponent's curriculum does not serve to ensure college admission for students wishing to go to college, and rather than prove that it does, my opponent challenged what college admission should or should not be. The fact remains that if all other things remain the same, my opponent's curriculum will not assure that students desiring to go to college will. Furthermore, my opponent suggests that in changing the High School Graduation Requirements the colleges would be forced to change their admission requirements. Nothing could be further from the truth, a good many colleges and universities are private, what the public school system does has no influence whatsoever on their requirements.

I argued that my opponent's curriculum does not teach enough Math. While I felt it unnecessary to state what type of Math my opponent's curriculum should teach, I did give examples of various possible math curriculums for high school and pointed out how they either pertain to college entry, or their utility to an individual.

My opponent argued that I could not prove that any aspect of Geometry or Algebra is useful and I did for both. Additionally, I would also like to point out that my curriculum does not require that every or any student take Algebra or Geometry.

I argued that there is not enough Science in my opponent's curriculum for college admission, and my opponent failed to acknowledge my argument in any relevant way just like in the Math example.

My posting the guidelines for college entry is my argument against my main argument against my opponent's educational system. Rather than my opponent proving that said system will successfully get individuals who wish to go to college into college, my opponent simply argued that college admission standards are wrong.

In regards to the debate:

A. My opponent has disrespected me.

B. My opponent has often stated that my believes are wrong without conclusive supporting argument.

C. My opponent has used statements/sources against me that are completely irrelevant to my position.

D. My opponent has taken my statements out of context, and has even went as far as to take individual words of mine out of context.

E. My opponent has attempted to use quotes against me that did not come from this debate.

A debate is ideally an academically challenging and enjoyable affair conducted by two parties that disagree with one another, but simultaneously respect one another. My opponent has elected to pull every punch and use under-handed tactics to attempt to win this debate.

In short, my opponent has removed every scrap of enjoyment and much of the academic challenge from this debate by willfully and maliciously being disrespectful toward me and going off-topic.

Again, I would like to reiterate my thanks to my opponent for accepting my challenge, to Xunzian, Wonderer and DorkyDood for voluntarily judging this debate, to Carleas for moderating this debate and to all spectators who have read this debate.

EDIT: Edited to fix my quotes.
"Love is the gravity of the Soul" - Abstract -/-/1988 - 3/11/2013 R.I.P

PavlovianModel146
Ringing The Bell

Posts: 7084
Joined: Tue Jul 03, 2007 4:56 am
Location: Ohio

### Re: The Structure of Public School

I would first like to say thank you to both participants for an outstanding debate! I was delighted to be chosen as a judge, and kept an open mind throughout the entire debate. I have the utmost respect for both parties. The hard work that each of you put into each post is overwhelmingly evident. So again, thank you both for your efforts. That being said, on to the judging. If you want to skip ahead to see who won, scroll down to the bottom of this post.

I liked Loren's opening post, where she went into specifics regarding what kind of courses should be required, how long they should be taught for, etc. I personally would've liked to see many more in-depth examples of what the curriculum should look like, as that is what the entire debate is about. Additionally, I would've liked to see arguments regarding what criteria would be used to determine which, out of the "millions of things that affect our day to day living," would be chosen to be taught in school.

Loren wrote:Affects our day to day living? There are millions of things that affect our day to day living. Cars affect our day to day living. Pets affect our day to day living. What is the standard here? There has to be a standard that we measure our courses and decide whether or not they should be taught in school. Their application to real life could be one standard. And one that I strongly support in my position.

Loren raised the question, "What is the standard?" She then states that the application to real life could be one standard, but this doesn't resolve the dilemma of which things, out of millions, to teach.

In the beginning of the debate, Pav stated:

Pavlov wrote:In conclusion, the argument that High Schools require an abundance of upper-level (and therefore, unnecessary) courses can be dismissed because it has been conclusively proven that an individual can graduate high school without even having taken Algebra I.

I don't think the arguments regarding other high schools criteria can be dismissed, just because of the example at one high school. Loren makes a relevant counter-argument about other schools' criteria which are much different than that of the high school in Ohio. Later in the debate, Pav changed his position on this, saying he was only referring to one specific high school as his model, contradicting his above statement.

It seems Pav had two main positions: that a college's requirements for coursework completed in high school should shape the high school curriculum, and that the high school in Ohio is a worthy model.

The latter position was the stronger of the two, in my humble opinion. I don't think a college's requirements are relevant to the discussion, as Pav himself pointed out:

Pavlov wrote:My opponents opinions regarding college entrance requirements are irrelevant to the topic because we are not here to discuss what should or should not be required for college entry, we are here to debate what should or should not be on the High School curriculum.

But Pav continuously stated that high school curriculum should be shaped around college entrance requirements:

Pavlov wrote:With that said, it would be inadvisable for a High School to draft and enforce a curriculum that is comprised of classes that do not meet the standards for college entry.

Unless I'm missing something, this contradiction seemed to further weaken Pav's position.

I did think Pav made great points regarding his model high school. He showed some courses that did seem to fit Loren's requirements, although the exact content of the course cannot be determined. He also made a great point with the vocational school as serving as an alternative that can be utilized in every day life after school.

Loren did a great job in her first post talking about what the courses should look like, but I do wish she would've gone more in depth. As I said before, this is what the debate should've centered around, which most of it wasn't.

Although this vote was extremely difficult for me to decide on, as both sides had their strengths and weaknesses, I am going to vote that Pavlov has won this one due to his model high school arguments, evidence, etc., and due to the lack of specifics regarding what the curriculum should look like, in detail, by Loren.

"My "faith," if truly I have any, is in the idea that methodically applied science increases our knowledge of the Universe." -Phaedrus
d0rkyd00d
Philosopher

Posts: 2495
Joined: Tue Sep 26, 2006 3:37 pm

### Re: The Structure of Public School

So i just finished reading everything... it took me a good bit of time...

It wasn't what i had expected, but i think there are some important questions raised and settled in this debate.

Here are my notes. may they be some interesting comic relief.

Loren: School teaches useless shit and should only teach useful shit.

Pavlovian: the "useless" shit is useful for people going to university.

Loren: University is not the dictator of use.

Pavlov: If university sucked, we would have changed it by now

Loren: so we should tap dance to the universities?

Pavlov: The universities dances esoteric qualities are irrelevant

Loren: that's why we should not need them

Pavlov: I have provided a decent enough model proviging usefulness to many people, school is still about university

Loren: When most people do not attend university, explain the use of forced university prep courses

Pavlov: i said offer, not force, only those planning to go to university should persue them

I'm sure that Loren did not deny offerring university prep courses, so i am left puzzled on the differences between your two positions.

Pavlovian provided an example of a useful vocational school, Loren agreed that it was useful.

The only tentacle that really pierced pavlovians' position was that he claimed basic courses in his model contained mostly relevant things.

I remain convinced by Loren that much of what we learn is completely irrelevant to not only university but to life.

And even though that encrouches on suggesting that the k-8 cirriculum remain unchanged, it is particularily stinging when it comes to many basic courses.

A good question that was raised in this debate is wether universities offer as much knowledge as they say they do, and not just superfluous crap they cash in on...

Another good question (the only one that was settled) was that the high school cirriculm should offer useful stuff.

Personally i would have said that if we spent all the money on teaching kids very very early, they would be able to teach themseleves...

I was supised that the current education system was not criticized further. class sizes and all that low funding jazz.

i expected the debate to be between two different ideal visions of an education system, and then an argumetn over whose was better. It was a bit more general than that.

Anyway, been a pleasure to read and judge your arguments.

I fault pavlov only for not providing adequate assuranc ethat the basic requirements in his system have use. Loren did not really go into a proposition but rather an attack on the current system, which is in many ways similar to the one pavlov proposed.

The main discussion which was actually an agreement that usefulness is good and university requirements should be available and optional.

Despite the underlying synicism in my words, bother debaters did a good job. There are a few things i would have done differently but when i have been in an ILP debate i found that the pressure was too much for me to perform how i would have liked.

I Think perhaps Pavlov should deserve the victory because he was the one who presented the most defined system, but in that he was unable to attack Lorens position of usefulness, which was indeed not that built upon,

So though pavlovians thesis was a fair bit more explained, Lorens remained unmarred, where Pavlovians was slightly dented.

I lay my vote with Loren.
Whatever makes you happy.

Wonderer
Wonderer

Posts: 6217
Joined: Tue Dec 25, 2007 10:06 pm

### Re: The Structure of Public School

I think both debaters did a fine job. There were points that I think would have helped both sides that were not brought up, but both sides also managed to bring up points which I hadn't considered at all! That is the joy of watching a debate, I suppose. Watching arguments transform themselves in ways you never would have imagined.

Ultimately, I think Pavlov did a good job of demonstrating that High School does not necessarily entail a focus on 'ornamental knowledge' and that such focus is really an artifact of the desire of the students' (and their families') desire to get into a good college. Loren was entirely correct that such a focus needn't be, but Pavlov countered that with his example of tech school.

So it boils down to what we conceive ought be. In arguing for a more limited set, Loren seemed to argue for a restricted freedom, since Pavlov managed to demonstrate that should students choose they can experience what is essentially Loren's system. And I guess I didn't feel that Loren managed to fully address that. It's a pity, since I think there were a variety of openings. But since those weren't taken, overall, I think Pavlov managed to take the day.

Though I would point out that a lot of that is due to superior rhetoric and sophistic tactics. As others have already pointed out, there was some free-wheeling with regard to the topic at hand by Pavlov. But through those tactics, I think Pavlov managed to control the language of the debate. At a couple of points, I think Loren could have deflated Pavlov's control -- but she didn't.

I'll go with Pavlov, but I do think both sides did a fantastic job.

Xunzian
Drunken Master

Posts: 10437
Joined: Mon Jan 02, 2006 9:14 pm

### Re: The Structure of Public School

To All Parties Involved,

Once again, I wish to extend my thanks to our judges, our moderator, and especially to my opponent, Loren646, for accepting my challenge.

"Rhetoric and Sophistry," as Xunzian said, in other words, the ability to bullshit won me the best two out of three. I would have preferred to flat out be right, but I'll take it all the same.

Regarding that, the reason that I challenged you to this debate, Loren646, is because you described my argument as completely, "Baseless and wrong," and I wanted to show you that while possibly wrong, my argument was not baseless.

Also Loren646, I wanted to show you, through the process of a formal debate that our positions are actually very close to being in agreement. Which, of course, was indicated when you read the judgments from our three judges.

Finally, Loren646, I want to tell you that I have been convinced, after all of this that you are right about the college entrnce requirements thing. I still believe that a High School has to offer the courses that are required for entry into most colleges, but at the same time I think that the average college entrance requirements are completely absurd. (Obviously, I couldn't say that in the actual debate...lol)

You are right, Loren646, that of all places, colleges and universities should have less strict entrance requirements, and that the curriculum required by colleges is completely ridiculous. I just said in a private message to someone the following:

After all is said and done, it turns out that myself and Loren646 are much closer in opinion than we originally would have believed. As far as the particulars are concerned, I must admit...

I agree with Loren646.

Why the hell are colleges of all places teaching subjects irrelevant to the degree that someone is getting?

Why did I have to take either Goddamn Plant Biology or Chemistry in college when I was an economics major?

It's true, I had to take either Plant Biology or Chemistry which has absolutely nothing to do with Economics, unless I wanted to become an economist for a biotech firm or something like that. Instead, I am a hotel manager, perhaps if I could have focused on Economics and Business classes like my degree intended, I would be running a bank right now.

I took Economics in College along with Business Administration because that is where my interests and abilities lie. That stupid Plant Biology class took all of my time that I could have otherwise spent learning more about the Business/Economic world because I had to focus all of my energy on passing that stupid class with a, "C."

In addition to that, I was also forced into taking one other Science class (which one I don't remember, but I barely passed it) as well as, Sociology, Psychology and Philosophy while in college. I am glad I took the last three, even though they related in no way to my Degree, except maybe Sociology.

Anyway, Loren646, you win my vote regarding the college curriculum being completely ridiculous argument, a fact that I did not originally disagree with anyway. However, I still contend that classes tht will get people into college must be taught.

By the way, I take no offense whatsoever to you calling this pathetic excuse for a State what it is, "Middle of Nowhere," but I do think BLHS/JeffCo JVS have an excellent system.

Also, you did not sap the fun out of this debate for me, I think it was great fun and hope you enjoyed it equally.

Thanks again to my opponent, Loren646, our judges, D0rkyD00d, Wonderer, and Xunzian and our moderator, Carleas, for an excellent time and a fantastic debate.
"Love is the gravity of the Soul" - Abstract -/-/1988 - 3/11/2013 R.I.P

PavlovianModel146
Ringing The Bell

Posts: 7084
Joined: Tue Jul 03, 2007 4:56 am
Location: Ohio

### Re: The Structure of Public School

Wonderer, D0rkyD00d, and Xunzian:

Thank you and I give you guys my utmost respect and gratitude. I appreciate that you have taken the time not only to read all of this but to thoroughly analyze and critique. And for this, I am indebted.

Pavlovianmodel146:

I did not like your approach at all. Challenging me on one subject yet arguing on another subject. In all honesty, after I read what you wrote, I was not even going to reply to your first posting - I was appalled because this was not the subject we were discussing in my thread nor in the description you challenged me. I felt this was very underhanded and a way to win a debate rather than seek out truth.

If changing the subject was your tactic to win, congrats - clever move.

Aside from this all this negativity, everything about Ohio was said in jest (some of my best childhood memories are in Ohio). I hate to say it but I will, i think you are rather observant, intelligent, and write eloquently. Enjoy the rest of the holidays.
Loren646

Posts: 80
Joined: Sat Dec 06, 2008 10:15 am

### Re: The Structure of Public School

Loren646 wrote:I did not like your approach at all. Challenging me on one subject yet arguing on another subject. In all honesty, after I read what you wrote, I was not even going to reply to your first posting - I was appalled because this was not the subject we were discussing in my thread nor in the description you challenged me. I felt this was very underhanded and a way to win a debate rather than seek out truth.

I don't understand this statement, I think we are supposed to each have one after the fact post here, so if you could talk to me either in the debate discussion thread or PM on how I changed the subject, I would be willing to discuss this perspective. I understand that I did not make any of the points I made in this debate in the initial thread or the challenge thread, but it would be kind of dumb for me to give you more time to prepare for my argument, wouldn't it?

I agree that it was not in the description of my challenge, though, but Carleas made a suggestion which I accepted and then you accepted.

Loren646 wrote:If changing the subject was your tactic to win, congrats - clever move.

Aside from this all this negativity, everything about Ohio was said in jest (some of my best childhood memories are in Ohio). I hate to say it but I will, i think you are rather observant, intelligent, and write eloquently. Enjoy the rest of the holidays.

I will never be able to convince you winning and losing had nothing to do with this, will I?

I appreciate your compliments, by the way. I find you both witty and extremely intelligent, I also thought this debate would be a push-over victory for me, but you brought the house and clearly, very nearly won.

By the way, I did like most of your cartoons.
"Love is the gravity of the Soul" - Abstract -/-/1988 - 3/11/2013 R.I.P

PavlovianModel146
Ringing The Bell

Posts: 7084
Joined: Tue Jul 03, 2007 4:56 am
Location: Ohio

### Re: The Structure of Public School

Thanks all for your participation! Pavlovianmodel146 wins two to three by judges decision. but the discussion and popular voting continue in the discussion thread!
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Carleas
Magister Ludi

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