September 27, 2003
I think that the proposal for High School education offered at home on the computer does not serve as a great idea. Students should have the opportunity to be able to interact with peers and follow the way that has provided education for centuries. Sheltered under a roof at home will not give students the chance to these opportunities and can result in many negative ways.
Right now, Philadelphia has a reputation as the city of brotherly love along with one of the highest obesity rates in America. The teenage population sitting at home on the computer seven hours a day, five days a week would not help this issue. Personally, when I get home and are continually just sitting around, I tend to constantly eat. Also I know that a lot of my friends have this habit as well. Take in mind also the factor that no gym and extra curricular activities are provided. Since the adolescences are not in a school there are no ways of proving that they are participating in exercise. To eat is one thing but when no activity takes place weight really can become a serious issue. Habits that are developed in teen years are not always the easiest to get rid of when people have reached adulthood, which means life, could continue this way or possibly end it in obesity.
The academic standards in most schools have to remain at a C average and above, especially to be able to graduate from Downingtown High School. Even though the school board tries to enforce this, many students have a hard time reaching that C. If teens start to become educated at home with no supervision problems would most likely occur. Distraction from studies shows one problem that could occur. Television, the phone, online chats, and other things to do around a home should not be held in the same place where students try to educate themselves. Also, what happens when the computer does not fully explain a lesson? No teacher explanations would be available as well as other help students can receive from a regular school. Hands on activity and class discussions often help me to better understand a lesson but without them grades may seriously suffer.
The biggest problem with having school at home would be that there is no peer interaction. Everyone needs to experience different situations with different kinds of people in order to learn and grow. For example, when high school students graduate from an at home school and go into the real world, what kind of social skills would exist? As well as the ability to interact with different races and ethnic backgrounds without discriminating judgments, if not exposed normality of human instinct would make people scared of difference. Friends also play a very important role in lives of teenagers. I do not know a single teenager who does not enjoy the time that they share with their friends. While at home students would stay copped up to themselves with no availability to social opportunities. Also with no friends self-esteem can go down and other problems may result.
However, I do see a positive point to having the chance to learn at your house. Sometimes kids show cruelty and when differences such as disabilities occur, jokes and taunting could occur. Learning at home could also help to eliminate mental and emotional scars. Still, everyone needs to know how to deal with people and situations. As well as with the problem of weight gain and keeping up grades I am sure there would be a way to still have a child with a disability in a public school. Next time one thinks about not wanting to go to school remember all the advantages it has and what negative things can come from learning at ones computer. One can help to rebuttal this proposal by showing that there is no need for it and education in public schools is fine. Lets show that teenagers care enough about the future and the quality in which one lives.