I am a new Idaho resident. My wife and I have been in deep discussion regarding Propositions 1, 2, and 3. These propositions, known as Luna Laws or Students First Laws, are already on the books. Voting yes tomorrow means you wish to keep them and voting no is a vote of non-support. I am including a non-political link explaining what each proposition entails.
As with most legislation, there are parts of each proposition that I embrace and parts that make me question whether this particular avenue is a good thing. I learned a great about each by reading the Senate legislation.
You are welcome to voice your thoughts, as I would appreciate the discussion. Proposition 3 deals directly with technology and should concern all of us regardless of state residence.
Thank you David for your thoughts...it is always helpful to have non political resources. I don't see the link however... Could you repost it? Thank you!
I don't appreciate any type of political posts on an educational website. I think these are better suited for social media sites or your personal accounts. Just my opinion.
I don't have any issues with a post like this here seeing as how most everyone taking these edtech courses will be impacted by these props so why not see how future educators view the props,,,
Kim, I can understand your point. I think an exception can be made here as the outcomes may have long lasting repercussions in education, especially in Idaho's attempts at addressing 21st Century Classroom instruction and learning. Thank you for providing the link and posting in a non-biased fashion!
I certainly appreciate your position and respect it. I have a lot to learn about posting articles for community thought. My query was poorly constructed it seems.
My intent was to get educator and future educator thought (specifically Technology educators) on legislation that governs, mandates, and funds present and future Technology education in Idaho skipping the passionate drama of social media. I specifically chose a link that presented the facts and the law without some sort of editorial undertone.
I have no political agenda here. We dissect apps and plans for our classroom. We should be able to explore legislation in an apolitical manner, especially when said legislation directly affects us now, or will impact what we wish to do when we graduate.
Yes, it can be a fine line and normally I would agree but the topic does affect many of us who are or will be educators in Idaho. It has been difficult to find unbiased explanations. I think that David's motives are completely unpolitical. Because of all the hype on social media etc, I have been wary too, but jumped at the chance to get a clear view of the propositions because it has been so difficult to do. Thanks to all for the discussion, I appreciate all those willing to venture out on a delicate subject!
As an Idaho parent with children that are currently in the K-12 community, I have great interest in all the propositions of course but I will share my thoughts and experiences only for Proposition 3 specifically as a parent and as a future educator. I will try to make this as short as possible.
I don’t feel comfortable with the mandate that requires high school students to take 2 semesters of online classes to graduate. The fact that there isn’t a choice is what bothers me. When one of my daughters was completing the 8th grade (she is now a senior) her junior high had more students than they could physically accommodate for the 8th grade science credit requirement. The school simply did not have enough classroom space available for all the 8th graders with the science teacher for that particular required science course. To solve this problem, the science students were given the option to complete one of the semesters online—though they were not required to do so. It was hoped that enough students would voluntarily choose the online option, which would solve the problem. My daughter chose to take the online science class. During the regular school hours of the physical classroom time that this online class replaced, the online students attended a computer lab to work on the online class. Someone monitored the 45 min class period while the students worked independently on their course. I suspect she was an aide as she did not have knowledge of the content area and was not a resource for the students when they had questions during this time. Basically she monitored the classroom lab for proper behavior. Students were to work independently at home as well to complete the course.
My daughter struggled greatly in this online environment and to make matters worse we had trouble with our Internet connection often. With limited resources as a single parent at the time—there was very little I could do to correct that part of the problem on my end. With the combination of the set up of the class and the challenges with being unable to connect easily to complete the course, my daughter had a very poor experience. The only thing that gives me some feeling of peace with a forced mandate is my experiences over the years with the incredible teachers and the administrators in the schools that my children have attended. They have gone to great lengths to help my children have success with any personal learning challenges that arose. There will be a great need to have in place accommodations to help those students who don’t respond well in an online learning environment. The possibility that those accommodations won’t be sufficient causes anxiety for me as a parent having already watched a daughter struggle through that painful process.
On the opposite side of the issue I have another daughter who currently attends one of the new technology high schools. She has been assigned a personal laptop which is the tool used in all her classes. They do not use traditional textbooks—the laptop replaces the textbooks with current updated programs. She is required to bring this laptop home every night even if she is current with her course work, as there is no way to secure the laptops in the school overnight. I will not approach the number of subjects that may concern parents with such assignment of a laptop, as my purpose is to share about my daughter’s academic experience within the structure of the technology high school. To get the full spectrum of her experience, it is helpful to understand that my daughter has struggled with a very challenging speech disability her whole life. She has no other academic challenges and consistently scores well on the ISAT tests etc. Her challenge is strictly trying to get her tongue to cooperate with her. As a result she is very shy-- especially speaking with her teachers or even more challenging when presenting in front of the class. This terrifies her.
Interestingly, at the technology high school she is thriving despite the fact that a very large portion of the course work in all her classes requires her to work in groups as they submit assignments and projects online before they give a group presentation that every student MUST participate in. These presentations happen almost every week. They rotate various responsibilities as group research contributors but each student MUST be a part of each verbal presentation. This was very nerve wracking for our daughter at first but she is doing fantastic—incredibly better in this environment than she has ever done in her prior traditional classroom environments even with the presentations that must be done in front of the class—OFTEN! I know that her success is no reflection on her prior teachers over the years because they lovingly went above and beyond to help her. Simply put—she does great in this technology environment yet my other daughter’s experience was opposite so this issue is a great challenge for me as a parent.
As for my experience with online learning, I have had varying experiences too, some more positive than others with my Ed Tech experience being one of the most positive to date. I chose the Ed Tech program for specific reasons. The ED Tech program allows me to participate in a great program without having to uproot my family as I acquire specific invaluable skills. Beginning next semester I will have the opportunity to teach in a traditional classroom as an adjunct instructor for a private university with horticulture as the content area. This is a very hands-on industry but in view of one of the university’s goals of continuing to expand their online learning programs to allow more students the opportunity of attending this particular university; I clearly saw the benefits in learning the skills to help integrate technology into this ‘traditional classroom’ content area and beyond. I chose Education Technology as my graduate program to gain the skills necessary to participate if the horticulture program is evaluated and possibly adapted to become part of an online learning environment in the future. Though the Propositions are specifically for the K-12 community, I take great interest in them as a future educator. Thank you for sharing the link David. It has helped!
Ah! I see your point...I apologize for not being a bit more clear in my wording! I didn't intend to make it sound as if 2 whole semesters were required. Goodness! It definitely makes a difference with the way I worded it for those who are unfamilar with the Proposition. Thank you for your clarification Michael...