I started tutoring a student at Brentwood High School in math. This student is a bright person who is active at school, extra-curriculars, and takes honors classes when possible. Not someone I would describe as lazy.
Since this was my first time tutoring this student, we went over their current assignments, that night’s homework, and then looked through quizzes and tests taken over the last couple of months. I was stunned by the results on the quizzes. They ranged from 30% to about 75%. The quizzes were marked with points off but showed little or no indication where the student went wrong. Based on our conversation, it is apparent that basic concepts were skipped or spoon-fed as assumptions.
I asked if the teacher had gone over any of the quizzes individually or had approached the student about the low grades to help improve performance. The response was an emphatic ‘no’. The story continued mentioning that the guidance counselor expressed relief that the student wouldn’t pursue anything related to math in college. This isn’t a senior about to leave school in a few weeks, they still have some years to influence this student.
For some reason, it is acceptable to the teacher and counselor that this student not understand the concepts taught in the math courses offered. This is a student that is/was on track to complete Calculus before graduation. As I said, not a numb-brained bottom feeder. It appears to me that this teacher is more interested in class and curriculum management than their student(s) learning.
The #1 goal of teachers should be for their student to LEARN what they are teaching. A test indicates how effectively the student has learned. If a student has a 30% on a test, THEY DID NOT LEARN THE CONCEPT, DON’T JUST MOVE ON WITHOUT DEALING WITH THAT STUDENT. TO DO OTHERWISE SAYS TO ME THAT YOU DON’T CARE IF THE STUDENT LEARNS OR NOT. This situation is wrong, wrong wrong.