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'Race to Nowhere' adds second show in Danville

Original post made on May 28, 2010

Advanced placement classes in every subject. Hours of homework every night. The push get a perfect 2400 on the SAT and attend an Ivy League college -- and that's on top of extracurricular activities like sports, music or dance lessons.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, May 28, 2010, 12:17 AM

Comments (14)

Posted by Rick
a resident of San Ramon Valley High School
on May 28, 2010 at 7:21 am

This is an excellent film with a strong local angle. Every parent and educator should see it at least once.

Posted by Nancy
a resident of Alamo
on May 28, 2010 at 8:15 am

De La Salle High School also showed this a few weeks ago and I strongly encourage parents to go see it! It was incredibly sobering and will (hopefully) change the way we approach our kids' education.

Posted by Kerry Dickinson
a resident of San Ramon Valley High School
on May 28, 2010 at 8:58 am

I am an Advisor to the film and highly recommend it. It has spurred many meaningful conversations in our community about raising well balanced children. I write a blog about these same issues. Web Link

Posted by In Alamo
a resident of Alamo
on May 28, 2010 at 9:00 am

We Americans are already lagging FAR behind much of the world in elementary and secondary education. It is understandable for teacher's unions to push for lower performance (it reduces work for them), but when School administrators, PTAs and school board also start pushing for lower performance (in the mistaken belief of "let's get back to the good old days we grew up in") it is really sad. The official involvement of SRVUSD schools in promotion of this film is really a VERY BAD sign for San Ramon Unified School District.

Posted by Jeanette
a resident of Danville
on May 28, 2010 at 12:34 pm

The high school teachers of the SRVUSD fought the homework time limits that were eventually imposed in the new homework policy last year. The honors and AP students were exempted from that policy. Teachers felt the policy that was eventually adopted did not allow the standards to be met such as the number of words that students were to read each year. The district surrendered to a very small, vocal group of parents who wanted more recreational time with their children and discarded the opinion of those reponsible for achieving the goals set by the district and state - the teachers. A small group of parents hijacked the education of 28,000 children.

Posted by Derek
a resident of Danville
on May 28, 2010 at 6:24 pm

Have either of you two even seen this film? No, I didn't think so. There are serious problems in our middle and high schools, but like a typical Alamo Foxified News zombie republican you have utterly and completely missed the point. The film has NOTHING to do with unions. It has been demonstrated ad-nauseam that stressed kids have high suicide rates, and earlier rates of heart disease, ulcers, hypertension, and other problems that no one under 50 should be having. I don't want my child rushed from one 45 minute brain-crunch to the next. If you yuppie dipsh!ts do, send your mini-conservatives to a private school.

Posted by Tristan
a resident of Danville
on May 28, 2010 at 7:22 pm

AP tests aren't that bad. I got a 5 on the Spanish test. The ACT is much tougher in my opinion. I got a 28.

Posted by Freckles
a resident of Stone Valley Middle School
on May 28, 2010 at 10:49 pm

Is it that difficult to understand that not every kid is a superstar at everything? How many adults work even work half as hard as high school students do these days? What the heck is wrong with people these days? Is sacrificing our kids childhood, health, family relationships, and happiness necessary for them to be "successful?" Do any adults remember being a child or a teenager? Yes, life is difficult but really people do we need to burn our kids out and make them little cynics even before they make it to high school? I do not know what the answers to all these questions are but I do know there has to be some type of balance in their lives. Don't get sucked in to the idea that if your kid is not an A student they are loosers and will never be happy or production members of society.

Posted by Roselynn
a resident of Blackhawk
on May 30, 2010 at 12:09 pm

Brain neurons are billions and with no stimulation early on in life they become Atrophiated. Math, language and music are important early on in life to maintain these brain neurons strong. Parents are important in a child's education. Schools are only a supplement to our children development and education and not even necessary. Schools should have an standard curriculum with the best teachers. Parents are the co-pilots and determined how successful their children will become. Your Dental Hygienist can clean your teeth very well but if you don't floss daily then what do you expect? You're the co-pilot!
It seems like public and private schools are not meeting expectations due to lock of good teachers for math, science, english, sports, art or music teachers. Many good teachers are teaching privately and don't want to be subjected to ridiculous school and government rules. Most of the good private instructors have their PHD, Masters and are focus in one subject and financially doing very well with extra curriculum activities students and Homeschooling students. Homeschooling, is very successfully if you have lots of money and can do independent studies for your children and at least one parent does not work. Perhaps, if televisions are out of your home, family dinners get reestablish at homes (important for children communication), home tutors and parents involvement take into place, small family gathers other than social events become more important, forming a spiritual and religious group once every two month can help to reinforce good morals, values and discipline within families( reading the bible can help you with grammar, interpretation and spelling, you don't have to be religious). Its hard to be in many places at once! U.S.A is a melting pot and social activities are important to people more than family. Wrong! If you have children, they're more important than any social event and activity. Usually, parents are very social and children are very social and there is no time to focus in the family. Focus, Focus, Focus. If you teach your child how to cook, plant, measure, build, wash cloth, clean the house, basic check account abilities, feed and clean the dog and cat, grocery shopping and sales abilities (this will teach them %, decimal, fractions etc) and make them responsible for some work starting at the age of 9 years old. Do not take children shopping for shoes and cloth. They have no business choosing anything if they don't make money on their own, girl friend and boyfriend, they can have them once they work, finish a degree and make their own money. I believe, these are good ingredients for a successful young man or woman. Dark ages mentality! In my opinion, this is just a simple way of life that can help our society and the well being of our children in generations to come.

Posted by Betty
a resident of Danville
on May 30, 2010 at 2:07 pm

Does it strike anyone as odd that the PTA of THIS school district keeps promoting this film? In one breath the district brags about incrediable test scores and college placement rates, and then the PTA pushes out this film? What do we think the community response would be if the teachers and the district really stopped encourging college level courses and academic success?

Posted by mom of three
a resident of Danville
on May 31, 2010 at 7:50 am

Good point Betty....

Posted by Duffy
a resident of Danville
on May 31, 2010 at 9:40 am

If you haven't seen the film and taken the time to analyze its message.... don't knock it!

The key to success is academic performance coupled with a well rounded individual's development.

Posted by Sara
a resident of Danville
on May 31, 2010 at 12:08 pm

I am always just a bit perplexed as to why we keep hearing how difficult it is to be a teacher here in SRVUSD. They gripe about low pay & all the challenges of teaching. At least they have a job, great medical and retirement benifits, and best of all lots of time off!
My son is a student at one of the middle schools in Danville. Last Friday, the day before the Memorial Day weekend, he spent the entire school day watching videos in EVERY CLASS. Why even bother going to school? Perhaps the teachers are already dreaming of their three month summer vacation and feel no need to teach the last few weeks of school, or perhaps they needed a break to “mentally” prepare for their three day weekend. Maybe we could have another bond issue so we could raise funds so our teacher could have a day off to prepare for long holiday weekends.

Posted by A Teacher
a resident of Danville
on May 31, 2010 at 12:45 pm

Were these videos part of the curriculum or were they fluff? Sometimes teachers plan videos that are part of the curriculum for a Friday because students are tired at the end of the week. If they were fluff, were they part of a reward students had earned? Did they watch a video in math class?

I teach middle school, though in a different district, and I'm rushing to get through curriculum before finals. I also spent much of my holiday weekend correcting papers, answering parent emails, and planning for the coming week of instruction. I would guess that many of my SRVUSD counterparts did the same.

Maybe it's not always visible to parents, but the teachers I know work hard both at school and at home. This includes those in the SRVUSD, where my kids are in school.

Please spend some time volunteering in a classroom or at the school. I'm sure they could use your help and then you could see up close exactly what a teacher's day is like.

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