RECENTLY ON TOL:
- A tumblr site dedicated to the people and places that make up Oregon and Southwest Washington.
High school starts freshman year. Learning at Benson is something different than what I could have got anywhere else. I am a curent Benson sophomore, and very proud of my school. The first two years are critical in determining high school success, as the PE teachers, tech-time mentors and everyone else at the school will point out. They all wanted us to succeed. And we do. With a 93% graduation rate at the most diverse school in the district, people are coming to Benson, liking what they get, and graduating. This is what we want to see happen. When people need a hands-on approach to learning, they look at us. We are famous for our tech classes, where students learn about industry standards and current technology and engineering. These are often motivating forces for underclassmen. They come because they want to go to their tech class. And then their junior year, they begin to really apply what they learned and really take it to a new level, and that is what the Benson diploma means.
On the other hand, Spending an entire half day at Benson studying your tech class will give you more time to learn. When you can spend 2 hours wiring a house instead of having to subtract wake up/ clean up time from the middle of that, you've done a lot more. And using industry teachers will improve that more so. These students may get more opportunities for internships and apprenticeships than are already available.
Honestly, I'm torn. I think the four years is an absolute requirement for students. But to improve Benson, we have to be able to devote more time to the tech classes, more professional teachers, and more money to the programs that are so amazing. We can't do both, but i think it would be better to get the kids who would otherwise not graduate (i could have been one) and motivate them with what they need, instead of letting a selective group of older kids succeed a little bit farther.
I am excited about the strengthening neighborhood schools part. But I don't think enough people believe it will work. Kids in my grade are planning on lying about their address to get into Franklin or Grant or dropping out and getting their GED. They don't believe that Jefferson or Roosevelt can improve. I want them to, but it's not going to happen if people don't give it a shot. Eliminating most transfer options (including Benson freshman) may do that. But will it be enough?
posted 3 years ago
view in context