Need to Know, Friday, April 6, 2012: Help Wanted

This week's host Maria Hinojosa.

In this month’s “Help Wanted” edition, Need to Know travels to Philadelphia to examine the city’s ambitious plan to reach out to and re-engage high school dropouts. Our story is part of American Graduate: Let’s Make It Happen, a public media initiative supported by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting to help local communities across America find solutions to address the dropout crisis.

What’s on this week:

Dropping in

Need to Know travels to Philadelphia to examine the city’s ambitious plan to reach out to and re-engage high school dropouts. The story is part of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting’s  “American Graduate” initiative.

Cecilia Rouse on the dropout rate

Princeton economics professor Cecilia Rouse explores how the nation’s high dropout rate undermines the nation’s competitive position in the world.

American Voices: Jon Meacham on education

Jon Meacham discusses how education is key to the United States regaining its footing economically, as well as remaining a military power.

Watch more full episodes of Need to Know.

 

Comments

  • Vivian Bergenthal

    As a former NYC high school art teacher a letter I wrote entitled, “One Size Does Not Fit All” was printed in the NYTimes almost ten years ago.  First of all, we need to offer other alternatives to a mind-set which says all must go to college.  Secondly, we need our classes to be more connected to the real world in which our students live, including the environment.  Thirdly, we need to make sure that students who enter high school are able to read at high school levels.
       We cannot expect high school teachers to dumb down their curriculums.  We must cease vilifying teachers, the most important professionals in a democracy, and step up the pace to change the whole school experience. Instead of tossing out the arts, we need to increase their presence from early education on through high school.  The arts engage students, letting them enjoy school. The arts help people develop innovative ideas and solutions to problems in every subject.  No scientist ever invented anything without the right side of the brain kicking in.   

  • andy bizon

    dropouts are caused by kids seeing and hearing the easy and large monetary rewards of playing sports (little school smarts needed) and no role models of people taking the education path getting large monetary rewards.

  • Liz2vh

    Where is the poll on drop out causes?

  • OldSchool

           America’s drop in academic preeminence and rise in drop-outs resulted from two huge changes in the way we do things:  the self-esteem movement of the ’80s –in which all children are rewarded for showing up or breathing and curricula are dumbed down so everybody can get A’s –  and the manufacturing model of education imposed on public schools by legislatures desperate for a “fix.”         
           Now, our schools are “data-driven,” with overpriced, miserably written standardized tests serving as the sole indicator of “success.”  Put those two factors together – “the reign of the child” and NCLB’s obsession with standardization – and we have had two generations of kids who don’t care … and can we blame them?
           I’m a 26-year veteran high school teacher who refuses to give her students grades they don’t deserve and who will not dumb down the curriculum … now parents (and even administrators) complain that I expect too much.  I hope that the we-make-widgits approach to education will shift back to a sensible pedagogy before I am forced into retirement …

  • Rschaefer

    You really ought to read the closed caption you provide with your program. There are so many mistakes in the translation, I would think that anyone who absolutly needs closed caption because of deafness would find it very difficult to understand what is being said. Some of what is typed is very funny but I don’t thunk humor is the goal. Just saying……..

  • Donna Simpson

    The school system in America needs to be revolutionized to meet the needs of the 21st Century.
    Robert Kiyosaki, author of the Rich Dad, Poor Dad series of books, has an interesting perspective
    regarding education – see pages 71 -75 in his book Rich Kid Smart Kid – his father was recognized
    as one of Hawaii’s top public school educators – our current system meets the needs of approximately
    30 % of the students and is failing the other 70% — everyone has a different winning formula for learning and our school system needs to start addressing this issue — kids need to be motivated to
    learn and the current curricula is not achieving this goal.  

  • Lionahwk2

    we need a revolution in our educational system, first off all education from per-school though post doctorate and all the certificate programs should be pay for by out taxes and not through fee’s and/or tuition. as long as the person has prerequisite and is able to pass the entrance exams, then finances should not be in the way of their education like it is today. we should make the act of dropping out of k though 12 more difficult then it would be to stay in school. by offering incentives to those on welfare to keep their children in school, also as each kid graduates from semester, they should be given a gift certificate to be able to buy things like clothes, computers, Ipads ect. based on their attendance, GPA and attitude. I think that schools k though 12 should offer 2 healthy meals a day for free (breakfast and lunch) and a highly subsides dinner (on a sliding scale from $0 to $5) depending on their parents income. kids cannot learn if they are hungry. we nead to treat the teachers and pay them as if they were doctors not lest then we pay janitors. and charter schools should be non-prophet co-ops run by the teachers and the teachers union and not corporations or administrators infant we should cut the amount of administrators in schools in favor of teachers. the money we spend now for this will save us 10 times the money later for prisons, lost jobs and lost items do to theft by those we faled to educate.

  • Lionahwk2

     I was thinking of a few more idea’s like having a housing allowance for parents who children are in school for those who need it. from k though 6 grade the parents will be given a section 8 (the state welfare office pays so much money for housing like food stamps but the money goes directly to the owner oh the property by the state and not to the individual) then from 7th grade to 12 grade, they would so much money from that housing allowance if the student cuts class or plays hooky, only excused absence like illnesses (certified by a doctor, with this reform we also need medicare for all so there is no financial burden because of doctors cost) funerals, and a few others that can be worked out later, but these must be worked out in advance. then a parent will have an incentive other then wanting their kid get ahead in life to make sure that their kid dose not drop out of school, if you need that housing allowance to help pay the rent, then you will have to make sure that kid goes to school and not drop out. we are paying that so that the the student can get an education and not paying to keep some one on welfare. welfare should be linked to education, another thing is the way we pay out welfare now is stupid, if you are an adult and want to get an education to better yourself, then you cannot get unemployment or welfare. we should change that to encourage those on welfare to get an education so they can get a job and get off of welfare. having welfare recipients go to school will safe us more money in he long run.
     

  • Carochip

    And the third reason for America’s failure in academics, and I believe the most important, is that parents aren’t raising their children anymore.  Lack of discipline, frazzled family structure, two parents working full-time, or one at home not working but rather relying on the government to provide, kids being allowed to spend countless hours on facebook, game boys, x boxes, etc. etc. etc. has sent us spiraling downward.  Thank you for your hard work and steadfastness in working against the odds! 

  • Carochip

    And the third reason for America’s failure in academics, and I believe the most important, is that parents aren’t raising their children anymore.  Lack of discipline, frazzled family structure, two parents working full-time, or one at home not working but rather relying on the government to provide, kids being allowed to spend countless hours on facebook, game boys, x boxes, etc. etc. etc. has sent us spiraling downward.  Thank you for your hard work and steadfastness in working against the odds! 

  • Denisea46

    Some pretty interesting stuff on education… we need to get competitive globally