Analyzing Argument: Awards At Main Street College

747 words - 3 pages

As a result of the issue of whether or not school awards should be abolished at Main Street Secondary College, Mr A J Smith, the principal of the College has written an article for the “Principal’s Newsletter.” In his article entitled “Lead and Achieve” (29 January 2016), Smith contends that school awards should be abolished. He addresses the parents and guardians of the school’s students in a self-assured and serious tone. In contrast, R W Tillen, a “father of two Main Street kids,” responded in an online the next day. He contends that awards should be kept. His piece employs the use of a controlled but critical tone as he addresses Smith and other parents of students at the school.
Smith begins by arguing in a measured tone that it is better to recognise the efforts of all students in other ways, rather than through awards. The target audience of parents are encouraged to feel a sense of anger that in the past, deserving students may not have received just rewards for the efforts, due to the selective nature of school awards. Through this, they are influenced to agree with Smith and consider his views, to ensure fairness for their children. Smith uses inclusive language to appeal to “educators, parents and guardians.” IN order to demonstrate to then that “[they] all have one common aim. This reinforces the fact that Smith only wants the best for each student, and this encourages parents to see that he is on their side, and in turn, encourage them to contemplate his point of view. Smith utilises expert opinion, stating that Dr Amy Lyttlewood from the Faculty of Education at City University claims that “everyday praise and positive reinforcement” are the “most meaningful way[s] to celebrate students’ achievement.” A photograph of Smith, which is included towards the top of the page depicts him standing in front of a shelf of books, and this strives to persuade parents of his intelligence and knowledge in the matter. As a result of the quote, which is emphasised in a separate text box and the inclusion of the photograph, parents are led to feel a sense of dismay that it has taken them so long to understand that awards are not the only way of recognising...

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