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Very thoughtful reply.  Thanks for sending it.
Helen Sabin
Long Beach City College
California

Rosemarie Woodruff wrote:

> As an undergraduate in secondary education, I developed a test for
> students at the highest level in high school ("college prep") in which
> more than half of the students earned a D. In my naivete I had written a
> test which asked them to apply the knowledge rather than just repeat it.
>
> In my current work with college students, every now and then, I encounter
> an high school honor student who is working hard but barely earning a C
> or less in exams. This is where we discuss the importance of going beyond
> the what level of understanding to why, how and suppose. When I ask these
> students if an apple and banana are the same, they often say no. Then when
> I ask, how are they similar, they come up with the category fruit. It is
> not a matter of ability. It comes back to learning style/individual
> perspective. These are the students who may be able to solve the problem
> but cannot justify the approach. In the case of the at-risk students, we
> need to factor in attitude/values which clash with the traditional
> learning environment.
>
> Whether a student chooses to work hard/effectively is beyond our control.
> We can only provide the options/encouragement/support. We all recognize
> that internal motivation is critical, but much of society operates on
> external motivation. No wonder so many students are
> confused/helpless/unmotivated. I like to believe that there are more
> students who are succeeding than not. The good news is that there's plenty
> of work for us to do. Which reminds me...got to get back to work.
>
> Aloha,  Rosie
>
> Rosemarie Woodruff
> Counseling and Student Development Center
> University of Hawaii-Manoa
> 2600 Campus Road, SSC 312
> Honolulu, HI 96822
> 808-965-6114
>
>                 The world is full of obstacle illusions.
>                                                          Grant Frasier
>
> On Fri, 12 Nov 1999, Prof Lorraine Lavorata wrote:
>
> > I agree to some degree but the example of Just Say No is not a good one
> > because that was alot more than just a slogan, it involved going into schools
> > and doing outreach and working with children in groups and projects about drug
> > abuse. Now for this issue of inner city kids, they have to do something to get
> > somethinhg. One cannot rest on their laurels and it is not just like Mager
> > they oughta wanna so to speak, it is reality. If I sat on my derriere I would
> > not be a college teacher pursuing a doctorate. If any one of us sat on our
> > derrieres we would not be the successful educational professionals we are
> > today. Well if innercity kids want a piece of the pie they need to work for
> > it. I blame their culture and families for the way they are since all they see
> > is welfare, drug abuse etc. We need to go into these communities and do
> > outreach and provide education and show role models who have made it because
> > they took the right classs and did the work to get there. IN my doctoral
> > programme Herve Varenne is one of my professors and he is from France and I
> > have heritage from France. MY little France cohort however, feels that the
> > outside needs to be fixed in society and not these innercity kids. Well I feel
> > that the outside sure needs fixing, but most of the fixing is within the
> > innercity culture. We as academics must reverence hard work, money and success
> > and instead of downgrading business and money. We need to teach innercity kids
> > that work is the key to success, not gangs. Have them use their leaderships
> > skills used for gangs in some community service or some work group in the
> > classroom. and most of all make sure they must take more classes and let's
> > stop encouraging remedical education, let's encourage hard work in high
> > school. Thanks France
> >
> >
> > ===== Original Message From Open Forum for Learning Assistance Professionals
> > <[log in to unmask]> =====
> > >The response from "France" is controversial for good reason. The concept
> > >of free will and individual responsibility is widely overdrawn. It may be
> > >possible for us to relieve ourselves of the feeling of responsibility by
> > >suggesting that, in Mager's words, "they really oughta wanta," but in
> > >reality it is about as effective as the "just say no' propaganda effort to
> > >reduce drug use. Evidence suggests that neither is the least effective.
> > >
> > >On the other hand, the fact that these young people have grown up in an
> > >environment that did not lead them to prepare themselves for academia,
> > >should not require society to create a sort of academic special olympics,
> > >where everyone can succeed no matter what their disability. Practicality
> > >demands that we maintain the standards that society requires and at the
> > >same time offer something of value to those who cannot--for whatever
> > >reasons--meet those standards. I think we know how to do the former; I see
> > >no evidence that we have a clue regarding the latter. When half of my
> > >pre-pre-college students fail to pass the arithmetic course for the second
> > >time, what helpful advice can I give them?
> > >
> > >John M. Flanigan <[log in to unmask]>     The equation is the final arbiter.
> > >Assistant Professor, Mathematics                    --Werner Heisenberg
> > >Kapi'olani Community College            The scoreboard is the final arbiter.
> > >4303 Diamond Head Road                              --Bill Walton
> > >Honolulu HI  96816                      History is the final arbiter.
> > >(808) 734-9371                                      --Edward Gibbon
> > >
> > >On Fri, 12 Nov 1999, Prof Lorraine Lavorata wrote:
> > >
> > >> What you say is right. I will add some very controversial yet very true
> > >> observations. If poor, inner-city NYC youths are not motivated enough to
> > take
> > >> the required courses in high school then it is their fault why they are at
> > a
> > >> lower level and cannot pass the regents. They need to start challenging
> > their
> > >> minds instead of their fellow citizens in street gangs. It is not society's
> > >> fault but their own. The education is available and if these students would
> > >> take advantage, we would not need to pile up the remedial classes in
> > colleges
> > >> where students should already have the skills. In France these students
> > would
> > >> not even get the baccalareat and pass the lycee let alone get into a
> > >> university. There is no open enrollment in France and in America, we should
> > >> start modeling after France. France
> > >>
> > >>
> > >> ===== Original Message From Open Forum for Learning Assistance
> > Professionals
> > >> <[log in to unmask]> =====
> > >> >Re the Regents' difficulty level:  As you said, reactions really
> > >> >depend on where one is coming from.  At my specialized high school,
> > >> >we were always glad to take a Regents because it was easier than
> > >> >our school's final exams.  For students in an inner-city high
> > >> >school, they would be difficult.
> > >> >
> > >> >The format in my time was usually a multiple-choice cumulative
> > >> >final, testing subject knowledge.  It was all factual and, as
> > >> >one of the posts said, we got the previous exams to practice on
> > >> >so we knew exactly what to expect.  I used to feel that there
> > >> >was a precise way you had to take the questions--not read too
> > >> >much or too little into them--and if you got a "feel" for that
> > >> >you could do well.
> > >> >
> > >> >In New York City, I suspect that most students who don't pass
> > >> >the Regents have not taken the courses, as opposed to taking the
> > >> >exams and failing them.  E.g. an academic diploma requires 3
> > >> >years of high school math and a general diploma requires 1 or 2.
> > >> >General students take only the minimum required courses.  That is
> > >> >why they jack up the remedial load at a place like CUNY--if they
> > >> >haven't taken intermediate algebra, they simply have to take it
> > >> >at CUNY for no credit.
> > >> >
> > >> >Because the Regents are subject tests, they have no meaningful
> > >> >correspondence to the SAT (except in so far as bright students
> > >> >who test well will do well on all types of tests).
> > >> >
> > >> >Another question was about the Regents College Test.  Years ago
> > >> >there was a Regents Scholarship Test.  I don't recall the content
> > >> >except that it was grueling (I think it took two full days).
> > >> >They were used for awarding merit scholarships, the precise
> > >> >amount of which was then aligned with your tuition.  That was
> > >> >abolished a number of years ago and was replaced by the Tuition
> > >> >Assistance Program which is based solely on financial need.  I
> > >> >assume the reason was that with the advent of open admissions and
> > >> >the imposition of tuition at CUNY (which used to be free), poor
> > >> >and underprepared students became the primary population at CUNY
> > >> >and perhaps at other colleges as well.
> > >> >
> > >> >Again, apologies to the upstate people for my painting such a
> > >> >provincially New York City picture!  I've been accused of being
> > >> >too provincial more than once before, but it's all I know--which
> > >> >means, I guess, that the label fits.
> > >> >
> > >> >Annette Gourgey
> > >>
> > >> Je pense, donc, je suis, Rene Descarte
> > >> Chacun ont deux pays et un de ils est France, Benjamin Franklin
> > >> vive la France
> > >>
> >
> > Je pense, donc, je suis, Rene Descarte
> > Chacun ont deux pays et un de ils est France, Benjamin Franklin
> > vive la France
> >