Thursday, April 9, 2009

Against Vocational Programs J-#9

The opposing side to having more schools with vocational programs, argues that the cost and lack of academics is not worth the trouble of having the programs. Some scholars believe that vocational programs are a waste of student time. They think that students should have more academic classes, instead of vocational programs. A large percent of people that participate in vocational programs do drop out of high school or do not attend college. The cost of the programs are a big issue with some people. The price per student ranges between 2,000 dollars to 14,000 dollars, depending on the program and what state the vocational program is located. They argue that the money should be going to more academic classes. Another issue is that some students get to drive to their vocational program. They think that the students will not go to class or they will go off and get in to some kind of trouble, which is true. These are the main arguments against vocational programs, but there is a lot more good aspects than bad.

Why dry campuses are the way to go.

In college it is a given that students are going to drink alcohol. In order to combat this issue many colleges are instating a dry campus policy. This policy does not allow any alcohol on the college campus at all, regardless of the student’s age. This policy is a very good idea for many reasons. Some of the major ones are there are less alcohol related deaths, the GPA's of the students are higher, and there is less likely a chance of a student to harm himself or others. On "wet" campuses the alcohol related death rate has been proven to be higher than that of dry campuses. Studies have also shown, if students drink it can cause damage to the brain this making the drinking students GPA up to one half of a letter grade lower. Finally, on "wet" campuses, it is a higher chance for a student to get harmed physically or emotionally due to alcohol related issues. Some of these issues may include rape, assault, battery, or police intervention. To conclude, a dry campus is more beneficial in every aspect when compared to a "wet" campus.

Harmful Illicit Use of Prescription Drugs

Many students have a hard time with studying and focusing in classes from day to day. Some students just deal realizing that they are going to have to study harder for the next class. There are some students though that have discovered prescriptions that they believe aide their ability to focus. Some of which may help them stay awake. These drugs however are normally prescribed to assist people diagnosed with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Ritalin being a prescription that is very available is also prescribed for narcolepsy. Ritalin is one of the most commonly illicitly used prescriptions because of what it is used for, to help people stay awake and to help people focus better.
Many students have been surveyed about the use of illicit drugs many have shown shocking results. On campuses students use to just simply drink crazy amounts of coffee and take caffeine pills. Now students are taking prescription that are not prescribed to them to stay awake and study. The effects of these prescriptions are endless. Taking these drugs interrupts sleep even after they have begun to wear-off. Interrupted sleep is only one of the many side effects that can harm a students health. Digestive problems, twitching, paranoia, and overdosing are a few more. Staying awake to study can be hard but why go through all the pain and side effects that are possible when coffee and energy drinks will do the same thing?
Being healthy is important these drugs can cause major complications helping to stop this drug abuse is going to take more than one person to stand up and say stop. Seeing students who are so worried about their grades that they go to these extents has effected many students. Using drugs that aren't prescribed for that individual is very dangerous. To stop this we must take a stand and show students our concern and help them find better ways to get better grades.

Who Needs High School?

It's the same old story year after year. The summer after graduation is coming to a close, Fall Semester begins for universities all across the country, and once agian another group of 18-year-olds is left baffled and confused as to why they are struggling to make C's in college, when they had just floated through high school making A's without even hardly cracking open a textbook. The blame for their poor performance automatically falls onto the shoulders of the colleges and the professors, and the classic complaint becomes, "Why don't colleges make it easier on incoming freshman?" Is that really a valid argument? Isn't college supposed to be the place where students, by choice, pay upwards in the tens of thousands of dollars to recieve the training and knowledge neccessary to get a slip of paper proving they have earned their right to contirbute to society in whatever field they so choose? It's not high school anymore. A degree cannot be earned by simply cruising through four years of nothing but, for lack of a better term, worthless standardized tests that do nothing but satisfy sub-par state and federal education standards so that "No child is left behind." The focus of blame here, needs to be shifted off of the universities and onto the high schools. Numerous studies have proven that the difference between what is taught at the high school level and what is expected at the college level is staggering. High schools need to, for lack of another better term, step up their game, so as to better prepare students for the challenges and expectations that college and life have awaiting them.

Journal #8 Daniel Leist

There is more than 83 billion dollars of financial aid available through our government. The cost of college has increased over recent years, yet financial aid is still only available to families considered low class. The government determines financial aid through a FASFA form. This form asks for a variety of things; the most important of them is the parents income. I don't see how it is possible that the government can judge how much money i need by asking my parents how much they make. My parents haven't given me a dime to attend IPFW. My parents give me as much aid for college as a low class family would give their child to attend college. The government needs to come up with a better way to determine who needs financial aid. Merit based financial aid is aid that is rewarded to students who excel in high school. I believe the cutoff for need based financial aid should be alot stricter and only the very needy students should receive that, and then more aid should go to boosting the merit based financial aid system. We need to come up with a better way of determining who and how much financial aid each student receives.

Sex Education in the classroom

Growing up we are taught that the only safe sex is no sex at all. Of course abstinence is the only way to 100 percent protect ourselves from diseases and child birth, but I believe the rate of pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases would greatly decline if health teachers began teaching students other ways to protect themselves. At a young age, probably around sixth grade, I believe students should be taught how to protect themselves other than by just staying abstinent. We live in a fast past world and the number of teen pregnancies and sexual transmitted diseases are increasing significantly. I believe that if teachers started educating their students about all the risks that come with having unprotected sex and started being more open about other ways to be safe; such as using condoms or being on birth control, then this widespread problem will decrease.
I also believe that teachers should start being more open and honest about the major risks that come with having unprotected sex. Yes, we all learn what sexually transmitted diseases are, but how much do students really know about each STD? As a student that was only taught to be abstinent during high school, I can truthfully say that I do not believe I am as educated about sexually transmitted diseases as I should be. In order for students to understand just how extreme these diseases are, it is my opinion that teachers stop being so vague about sexually transmitted diseases and start really reaching out to students about this topic.
It is my hope that if teachers begin teaching alternative ways to have safe sex that the rate of STD’s and teen pregnancies will drastically decrease.

Stop the insanity!

You don't have to look very hard to find a headline in the newspaper or a story on the nightly news that says "music program cut due to budget cuts. Music and the arts in general have become an easy target in these struggling economic times. Charles Gardner's theory of multiple intelligences lists eight different areas of intelligence that are displayed by human beings. Each one of them is thought to hold equal importance and should be treated equally. Music is one of these areas. Most schools focus on mathematical and linguistics studies due to a push for standardized testing, and often forget about the other crucial areas in of intelligence's in education. Music should be held with the same importance as these other core subjects and it is time stop this injustice and listen to what Gardner has already stated. In addition to Gardner's work, Greek philosophers Aristotle, Plato, and Socrates told us long ago that music is a vital component of our lives and should be taught to everyone. They felt that music was not only important as it relates to other learning, but that music helped to make people better people in society. Music as it relates to society, culture, higher academic achievement and overall happiness are just a few of the areas that prove it's importance and value in our schools.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

The Beginnings Debate

One of the most intrinsic questions we have as human beings is where do we come from?  The two main theories put forth are creationism and evolution.  Creationism states that we were created about 10,000 years ago by God, in the form we are today, along with all the animals and Earth.  Evolution, on the other hand, says Earth came to being several million years ago, and all life forms currently inhabiting it have descended from simpler beings.  As the centuries went by, life forms got more complex and varied, with the weaker ones dying out and the strong ones passing on their traits to the next generation.

Obviously, the two are mutually exclusive, and the question educators and, lately, legislators, have been asking is: what do we teach in public schools?  The short answer, to me, is both.  While both theories of course have their detractors, I think this is an ultimately personal decision.  The students should be told the various views, with the relevant hard data, and then left to decide for themselves.

However, due to the wisdom and foresight of various legislators and concerned citizens, evolution is the only theory to be found in most public schools.  Citing the need for separation of church and state, creationism has been struck down by courts in several states.  Neither theory can truly be completely proven, as we obviously have no witnesses to tell us what exactly happened, although there has been evidence to corroborate evolution.

Journal #8-by Jessica Updike

Violent incidents that have occurred in schools over the past couple of years have caused an uproar over increasing school security measures. In the 2003-2004 school year, there was a total of 2,165 students that have been expelled for bring a firearm to school. In 2005, in a survey of students and teachers, 7.9% of them reported being threatened or injured with a weapon on school property. By increasing security measures, these numbers can decrease dramatically preventing students from possessing firearms at school, along with any other type of weapon. School administrators tend to worry more about the cost of security measures, although they may not realize that there are major costs and aftereffects of school violence that is much greater than the cost of installing different types of security measures. The total amount of money needed to cover the costs of violence is estimated to be around $2 million per episode. Therefore, it would be a better plan to be ready for a security breach rather than waiting for it to happen and pay for the costs later. Schools are meant to be a learning environment, but how can students learn if they are in constant fear? There are different types of security measures that can be installed to decrease the risk of a violent episode happening in a school. Such security measures are closed-circuit television cameras, door security hardware, electronic security panels, metal detectors, and panic buttons. If all schools included these measures in their assessment, there would be no more fear or pain that students can endure due to the incidents that are occurring within schools.


Give your blog posts a title that reflects the content of the entry. "Journal #8" only tells me what assignment you are doing, which is something I will be aale to figure out based on the date range of your post. Giving your post a creative title will also allow you to jump right into your argument, as opposed to beginning with: "My argument is about..."

Try it, you'll like it. :) Your readers will appreciate it, too!

Coffee Shops on Campuses

My argument is for coffee shops on college campuses.

Caffeine is one of the world's most widely consumed stimulants; so popular that coffee houses are popping up all over the world. Caffeine is a naturally occurring substance from the leaves, fruits and seeds of over sixty plants, when consumed the effects are felt within moments. These effects have become almost a necessity in the fast paced, demanding society we live in today.

Since College is such a drastic change in atmosphere, schedules, class loads and stress, many students rely on coffee to get them through the sluggish moments of their day. Studies have shown that students who consume caffeinated beverages such as coffee or tea before class have a better mood and concentration level. Further studies have shown that foods containing caffeine are not harmful when consumed in moderation. The U.S. FDA has classified caffeine as a safe food additive. Most people are able to control the amount of caffeine they consume in order to maximize the positive effects and eliminate the negative ones.

Coffee shops on college campuses not only provide convenient access to coffee and tea, they also provide a great study environment and a place for students to come together and converse.

Journal #8

Vocational programs are just not good for getting out of school, they also are a good learning experience. The people that participate in vocational programs may learn what they want to do for a living or what they don’t want to do. There are all types of programs to interest all sorts of different kinds of people. For those who choose to make a profession out of it, are way ahead of other people who didn’t participate in vocational programs. The programs are taught by an expert in that field of education. Hands- on activities teach the students what and how to do certain things in that program. Most people would rather learn something hands-on, then read in a book and still not know what’s going on. Most of the vocational programs have the students working with very expensive machinery. The programs teach responsibility, respect, awareness and other important aspects. I participated in a vocational program and it made my high school experience more fun and I learnt a skill. There should be more schools that offer vocational programs.

Journal 8

My argument is over whether or not college campuses should be dry. A dry campus is a campus where alcohol is not permitted in any way. I believe that if alcohol was not allowed there would be fewer accidents on campus as well as a lot fewer unwanted sexual advances. Alcohol is a very dangerous substance that should be monitored and should be kept out of the reach of underage students. While a student is in college the number one priority should be getting good grades and progressing towards your degree or certificate. Studies have shown that the more alcohol a college student drinks the worse the grade point average. I don't think it is fair to a student who has a drunk roommate which makes it more difficult to study. When you are paying so much money for an education I really think the school should do it's best to hold of all of the possible distractions. Overall, I don't see any benefits in having alcohol on a school campus.
-Jeff Prentice-

Journal 8

Smaller class sizes have been a controversial issue for many years. By reducing the class sizes in college classrooms the students will be able to achieve and take in more from the professor. It would also be easier on the professors, they would have less to grade, not as many tests to make up, and would be able to make lesson plans to interact with the students more. The institution would also benefit greatly. If the students are happy with their classes and feel they are benefiting students will talk and refer the institution to other people, and they are less likely to drop out or transfer to another school. In my experience in high school and college i have had much larger classes and i feel i didn't benefit in the larger classes. I felt like I was not getting all the information correct i needed, and that the professor did not know how to teach with so many students. When I entered into the smaller classroom the atmosphere was lightened. I was able to interact with the students and the professor more efficiently. Though many argue that many schools do not have the funding to support these smaller class sizes, many low income schools have already found ways to. It is proven that if schools cut down on unnecessary funds they could easily afford this change that is greatly needed. It has been proven many times in many studies that students benefit in smaller class sizes. Class size reduction has been shown to be a flexible tool that helps raise student achievement while reducing the achievement gap between minority and non-minority students.
-Kayla Craig

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Journal 8

My argument is for school dress codes to better enforced. I believe that there should be more strict rules and that they should be enforced more strictly. The only fight that people have against this issue is that the kids wont be able to be themselves and be unique or creative, but i don't think that it matters. When they get a real job the kids are going to have to follow the dress codes that they are given. School is not a place to show off your body or express how you feel through your clothing. School, just like work, is a place to learn and work at improving ones self. There is a time and a place to wear the clothes that you desire but i do not believe that school is the time or place to do it. When going to school you should dress presentably and professional. When you go out with your friends to a movie or the mall, then is the time to show how unique you are and to be a kid.


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Journal #8

Contrary to the belief that home education is detrimental to children, in most cases homeschooling better prepares students for college. This is shown in countless studies and through my own personal experience. Studies from Dr. Brian D. Ray, Ph.D. , founder of the National Home Education Research Institute, claims that the amount of individual learning in a home school environment nurtures traits that benefit that students need to succeed in college, such as, self-motivation, work ethic, and industrious minds. More and more home educated students are getting into top universities, like Harvard. The atmosphere of home education tends to be very similar to college, especially since it allows kids to base their studies around their interests, passions, and goals. Isn’t this exactly what we do in college? Picking a major, and having the rest of our studies build to that. Also, I have seen many of my home schooled friends take classes at community colleges during high school instead of taking a high school class to prepare for a college class. Why not take gen-ed college classes to help prepare for their future in college? One of my friends, a former home schooler, would not have been considered the smartest student, but she decided to take college classes her junior and senior year. She will be graduating from high school in may, and she will also have her Associate’s Degree in Fine Arts. It cannot be denied that the flexibility and personalization of studies in home education closely resemble college, therefore helping home schooled students to fare better once in college.
-Jocelyn Deckard

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