Let the Kids Spell! Lincoln, RI School Board and NCLB Act, Fuck You!

Spelling Bee cancelled because adminstrators fear it will violate the No Child Left Behind Act

Fuck this feel-good, everybody is special bullshit. Some kids ARE smarter. Some kids who aren’t smarter in math or history or gym are better spellers and love to be able to show off a little when they’re typically the butt of retard jokes between students. A little consequence free competition is a great motivational tool, and essential practice for a real world where not everybody can get their dream job, or even their second or third choices. Kids need to learn that things are competitive, and they need to be able to try and impress.

And who says it doesn’t make all the kids reach high standards? I remember spelling bees when I was in elementary school. For the few weeks leading up to it, the teachers tried teaching us the tricky words, more importantly, tried teaching us some of the syntactical rules to explain why ph sounds like f and irregular pluralization rules, and the kids who were interested (there were a good number) learned them with zeal, and genuinely learned something about English. The kids who really didn’t care about the spelling bee, or about grammar in general, didn’t learn, and the great fallacy that the NCLBA makes is that we can force these kids to care if we spend enough time with them at the sacrifice of the kids who will really want to learn and succeed. It was GREAT for the kids who wanted to learn, and no skin off the backs of the kids who didn’t.

No Child Left Behind has a different meaning among myself and my friends (many of whom are young recently hired or aspiring teachers): No Child Allowed To Get Ahead. No Child Able to Fulfill Their Potential (unless it’s at the standard mediocre level). The inevitable end of this miserable fucking atrocity is to make teachers teach to a test, not toward comprehension, and for kids to become robots who can perform on said test, and not at all learn critical thinking or real world performance. For the kids, it’s crushing any chance they have to learn what they’re good at and pursue it with zeal. Instead of a couple of genuine A kids in a class, a handful of Bs, a good number of mediocre Cs and the remaing sub-par Ds, we seem to just want every kid to be a solid C+. An improvement on the average? Maybe. An improvement for the kids that will one day run my government (talking behind the scenes, not the politicians. They’re definitely C material already), research disease, and make settling another planet viable before the big meteor destroys all life on earth? Hell no. It’d be SO MUCH BETTER to make them fucking mediocre like the rest, that way we won’t HURT THE FEELINGS of the underachievers.

In short, kids need to worry a little that they’re inferior to other students so they’ll try harder. Kids need to know that society will reward effort and achievement. Kids need to know, in the words of Fight Club’s Tyler Durden, “You are not special. You are not a beautiful or unique snowflake. You’re the same decaying organic matter as everything else.” Make some worth of the time you have and make your hulking meatsack learn more than your predecessors.

Fucking sensitive coddling bullshit.

I thought this part was interesting.

Nobody at the school wanted to keep it?
Personally I hated the spelling bee, big suprise I’m sure, but it wasn’t a bad thing, In my school, if the winner was a guy, then he got all the beatings from the bullies for the next week. So, it was a week off for me.

Actually, this kind of “Let’s make everybody win!” feel-goodism is more of an offshoot of the left (teacher’s unions, in particular) than of the right. Case in point: the banning of dodgeball in almost all public schools because kids can lose.

As a student in a high school in New Jersey, a bastion of liberalism, I see this mentality all the time. In fact, our school abolished class rank to avoid offending those who can’t make the cut, and allowed the best public speaker, rather than the top student, to give the valedictory speech.

This works the other way, too - one English teacher (not the one that I pitted, btw) does not give a grade higher than a 95 on essays because “no essay is perfect”. NCLB, as I see it, is more of a matter of holding schools accountable for the performance of their students. Considering the lack of accountability for public schools, I think that that’s a good thing.

These people have college degrees, right? Some of them likely could be addressed as Dr., right? How can they be so fucking stupid?

Really? When I won my school spelling bee in 3rd grade, my friends carried me out of the auditorium on their shoulders. :slight_smile:

So yeah, spelling bees are cool. And let’s not forget the moral of “The Incredibles”: “Everyone is special” is just another way of saying no one is.

Time for a data check. Approximately how many public schools in the United States will be participating in this year’s National Spelling Bee? Approximately how many are declining to participate and citing NCLB as the reason? If the ratio of decliners to participatants is small (oh, let’s say, 1/(really big X)), on what basis do you conclude that the decliners are the ones correctly interpreting NCLB?

Oh yes, more of this, “It’s all the fault of the Left!”

Jesus Christ. Just shut up already. I’m so sick of this crap. “It’s all the leftists!” “All these right-wingers are jerks!”

Give it up already. The fact that NCLB is fucked up is not about left or right.

I aree. While there is possibly a little fluff in the bill - that’s all; it is, fluff. The meat of it and the entire point of it is simply to demand statistics comparison and open acknowledgement. Teachers already teach-to-the-test, and most states already have standardized tests anyway. NCLB simply expands that and enforces it. Frankly, the administrators here are simply using it as an excuse.

In any event, the purpose of the NCLB isn’t to enforce mediocrtiy, but to demand an explanation as to why some kids are simply being shut out, why they aren’t getting anything better than C’s.

And besides, the standardized tests are so easy, only a complete idiot could fil them.

I have always been amazed by how stupid old people are. And by how stupid they think children are. Don’t they realize that we (well, I guess I don’t count as a child anymore) see right through meaningless crap like this? Childnres aren’t necessarily very complex or deep, and they can be taken for a ride, but their overall bullshit meter is at least as accurate as any adult’s and probably better in many cases.

Believe me, they know damn well when they’ve really done well and when they haven’t. What we’re being sold here is that we ought to lie about and protect them from anything contrary to an ideal.

Is it at possible that this is a jab at NCLB and not some liberal feel good ploy? Depending on how you look at it, it works both ways, i.e. the NCLB states that no child shall be left behind and because a spelling bee inherently leaves some children behind, it automatically follows that spelling bees are prohibited by the NCLB.

At the very least, getting rid of the spelling bee is much better than an “everybody wins” type of thing.


And please enlighten me where in my OP I say anything equating this bullshit to the right? Was it “An improvement for the kids that will one day run my government (talking behind the scenes, not the politicians. They’re definitely C material already)”? That was (a) a mild joke, and (b) directed at all politicians (and others in executive roles). I work around these people every day, and believe me when I say that to get anything done, I need to do just that, work AROUND them. It was party neutral, and I think you tried jumping on making this a blue-v-red argument with no basis.

I know that Kerry easily won RI’s 4 votes in the last election. And that it, like most of the atlantic northeast, is a liberal area of the country. I also know that some of the strongest proponents of the NCLB Act, as enacted, are people like Laura Bush and the clearly morally conservative new Secretary of Education, Marge Spellings (a pit post on her is up to three pages now). I wasn’t making it a party issue. Shame on you for doing so, athelas.

No Child Left Behind. No Child Pushed Ahead. All Children Exactly The Same.

Stuff like this frosts me because it takes away any reason to really achieve anything. Spelling Bees and their ilk reward kids for doing well and working hard, and the competition can make the lower seeds work a bit harder.

Those who do well should be rewarded and pushed to be the best they can. Those who do not should be beaten severely. :wink:

That and this is a complete dipshit interpretation of No Child Left Behind. :rolleyes:

Regardless of NCLB, these particular school administrators and principals strike me as nutless fucktards.

I have a feeling that the school administrators just didn’t feel like doing the spelling bee and when pressed for why they were’nt doing it made up a lame excuse.

What neuroman said.

Accountability, yes. Gross stupidity at the District level, no.

Why have test scores at all? Every kid deserves an ‘A’ :rolleyes:
No dodgeball because someone has to lose?!? I could see it if it was to prevent kids getting hurt (we had a jackass in class with no athletic ability. Gym class was payback time).

Newsflash to all kids: First, sometimes you win, sometimes you lose. Second, there is always someone better than you. Deal with it.

I thought they did away with dodgeball because it’s fucking pointless. What skills are being taught, exactly?

Besides, most of the time my friends and I would make sure we got struck out on purpose then we’d go sit on the sides and chat. Not a very productive exercise.

(Yes, I know it’s physical activity, but when all the unathletic kids are sitting around, they’re NOT getting the activity that they need).

Despite the typical misrepresentations by the right, this was actually the reason the school gave. They were concerned because dodgeballs games tended to result in bullying against unpopular, unathletic kids by the more popular kids. Note that it was merely dodgeball that was banned, it wasn’t other competitive sports like kickball, basketball, whatnot.

No, it doesn’t. At least that’s not how it’s working in the real world. It does not demand an explanation. Far from it, it doesn’t want to hear any “lame excuses”, it merely seeks to punish. Under NCLB, kids don’t learn because of natural curiousity or an inspirational teacher, they just keep from failing because of fear. That’s hardly an effective learning environment.

I have yet to meet or hear from a teacher who thinks this is a good idea. But to the layman (and politician), it sounds great. “Hold schools accountable” is a great slogan to help win an election. But it’s as meaningless and stupid as “Family Values” or “Ask what you can do for your country.” Scratch just barely below the surface and you can see this for the garbage it really is.

On the topic of building self-esteem in kids, I’m all for it, but it seems like teachers and parents have no idea what it means or how to achieve it. Keeping little Billy from playing dodgeball so that he can’t lose at it is entirely bassackwards. What little Billy needs to learn is that he is a good and worthy person despite the fact that he sucks at dodgeball. It astonishes me how few people can make this distinction.

Precisely. While there were many sports and games that I lost as a child, in only one of them did I get hit with the damned ball as a normal part of gameplay, folks. Dodgeball is often no more than organized bullying and I’m glad they did away with it. That one isn’t about losing, it’s about getting the shit beaten out of the unpopular kids. If you’re still whining about how the liberal educational union junta has stolen dodgeball from the children, why don’t you go outside, find a big strong guy who dosen’t like you very much, and have him throw a ball at your stomach at ten paces. (Be sure to ask him to break your glasses, while you’re at it.) Hurts a bit, don’t it? That’s not really the actual goal of the game in, say, softball.

Seriously! What the fuck are we trying to do? Raise children who are 100% not ready to deal with the realities of life? Because that seems to be what’s going on here with this shit. What happens after school when they actually have to earn something (like a salary or a raise, or promotion) based soley on their (here’s a concept) own merits! We are raising a country of people that are going to have an unrealistic sense of entitlement and it’s BULL SHIT!