Social and Philosophical Foundations of Education

Is this discrimination?
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Author:  Sarah Robinson [ Wed Apr 23, 2008 10:05 pm ]
Post subject:  Is this discrimination?

So I'm doing my practicum right now in an Elementary School in Burke County. One day we were sitting around during recess along with all of the other second grade teachers and my teacher was talking about nominating people for the AG program. One of the teachers asked her about a particular boy who is extremely smart but has ADD. She said that although he was smart, he just wasn't motivated enough for the program. I felt like this was wrong because when he is interested in something, he responds to it. I haven't been with the children all year so I don't know all of the details but what does everyone else think?

Author:  Tracy Rafferty [ Wed Apr 23, 2008 10:12 pm ]
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aww that is sad. I wish more teachers would realize how much they can reach some of their students by thinking outside of the box and reaching out to the students interests. But it is more work, for an already overworked teacher...

Author:  Kristi Edwards [ Thu Apr 24, 2008 3:16 pm ]
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I do not think that a teacher should restrict a child from advancing their learning because they may have ADD. Sometimes I think that teachers of AG classes only want the "perfect" students (smart and don't cause any trouble). The child with ADD might cause a disruption to the classroom, but teachers need to stop thinking that way. Just because a child may struggle to sit still or concentrate does not mean that there is not away to teach that student.

Author:  Jacob Beach [ Thu Apr 24, 2008 10:09 pm ]
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I think that you need to know the background of a student before you can make a judgment like this. If the student's only issue is moderate ADD though I feel like that can easily be overcome because AG is about challenging students who are bored in the classroom, its perfect for kids who can't concentrate on boring topics!

Author:  Lauren Blackwelder [ Fri Apr 25, 2008 7:37 pm ]
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AG is designed for students who are bored in the classroom and need to be challenged more. I feel like AG would be great for an ADD student because this would get them not only out of their seat for awhile, but out of their classroom and with another teacher. This would change the scenery for the student. Also, the reason why he might have such a hard time concentrating in the classroom could be that he is bored. AG would provide him with a challenge. Many AG lessons are meant to be creative and provide students with a chance to think outside of the box and that might be what this student needs. I was in AG and looking back now there were quite a few students who were probably ADD, but they really enjoyed the class because they were actually challenged. They were also taken out of the classroom which gave them sort of a "break" from their normal day.

Author:  Holly Riddle [ Sat Apr 26, 2008 12:38 pm ]
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I absolutely believe that ADD should not stop a student from doing ANYTHING they are capable of!! If the teacher thinks the kid's problem is that he's not motivated enough.......did she even stop to think that being in AG might GIVE the student motivation???? Maybe the student will have something to look forward to, and will welcome the challenge.

If the student doesn't perform well in AG, he/she can easily be moved back to the regular classrooms. But I say let the student might be one of the best opportunities the child has at this point and time.

Author:  Emily Nicholson [ Sat Apr 26, 2008 10:12 pm ]
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I do not think that just because the student has ADD doesnt mean he cant do what others are doing. The teacher is making it seem like the ADD is controlling his life and she is looking at him as the ADD child instead of looking at him as the child with ADD, and that is exactly what he is, a student, first and foremost. I think if the student is capable of doing it and shows good progress with his classwork then it should not matter that he has a disability.

Author:  Jessica Smith [ Sun Apr 27, 2008 12:05 pm ]
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I feel that the student should not be held back simply because he is diagnosed with ADD. Holding him back due to this fact alone would certianly be a form of discrimination.

Author:  Seth Thomson [ Tue Apr 29, 2008 11:57 am ]
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I can see where you can be offended but we don't know the complete background of this child. He might be gifted but even the most gifted sometimes don't fit into certain programs. Even though he excels in certain areas, other areas could drown him. I imagine the teacher did not make this remark due to his ADD, there must have been other circumstances too.

Author:  Ryan Dunlevy [ Tue Apr 29, 2008 3:15 pm ]
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I can completely understand where you could see that comment as a little upsetting, seeing as how your teacher made assumptions about the boy's desire to learn, but at the same time, is it not fair to give recommendations for such a program based not just on ability, but on actual performance? Just because a child is capable of doing something, doesn't necessarily mean he/she will do it and do it well.

Author:  Lauren Johnson [ Fri May 02, 2008 12:04 am ]
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Jacob has a valid point. You should never make a judgement about a student until you know them personally or know their background. There are many teachers today that will just pass a student along just because of some problems that they may have. Then teachers pass the word to other teachers and when the student gets into their classroom they already have these misconceptions about that student. It is not fair for the student by any means. But as for the teacher not letting the child into AG because of moderate ADD is a bunch of BS. As Jacob said ADD is part of being bored and AG would challenge the student and in turn hopefully help him/her overcome ADD.

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