Why are we addressing only 1/2 the issue of school reform?

As a teacher today I have often heard colleagues, parents, and administration talk of the apathy and lack of work ethic from students today.  I know there have been times in class that I have wondered that myself.  When I think of this subject, I often wonder is it the students or is it the education system.  Kids are often bored at school. We all know this and, as a teacher, I see it every day.  Teachers try to engage students and keep their motivation and interest, but it does not always work.  No matter what teachers do, the structure of the school is still the same. Every 50 minutes their is a bell, and after a couple of classes there is lunch, then a couple more classes, then they go home. While teachers can alter what happens in their rooms quite effectively, in many cases the atmosphere of the school does not change.

For true education reform we have to change the way students go to school.  A series of classes and heavily structured day may have worked in the past, but are they working today? With all of the talk of school reform and what happens in the classroom ,should we not consider also how the overall day is structured for the students?  All educators know that an atmosphere can have a profound effect on student achievement.  Reform in the classroom is only part of the equation.  Home life and the educational system as a whole is the other half of the equation.  Without addressing all of the issues affecting our schools, true reform will not happen.

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