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The Importance Of Education: I Was Left Behind

2700 words - 11 pages

By fourth grade I was already crashing and burning. Almost every student in my class was moving ahead in subjects that I seemed to be understanding less and less by the day. If education were a race where we all started at the same time; than I was quickly becoming the guy falling into last place. Truthfully, math was the beginning of the end for me. Even now, the feeling I get trying to solve simple math problems is one of frustration and embarrassment. I feel like I'm hitting a mental wall. Try to imagine your mind pushing past a barrier that you could not breakthrough regardless of how hard you tried. Sort of like trying to understand someone speaking to you in a foreign language with almost no previous experience. When someone asked me to solve a problem involving long division, a deep-rooted sense of insecurity would overwhelm me. I would desperately try to understand where to begin; It was the feeling of hopelessness and it only grew over time.
I slipped away from the rest of the herd around fractions and division. It's kind of funny actually; I literally began to fracture and divide from everyone else. Hephzibah Roskelly, a professor at the University of North Carolina¬-Greensboro explains the process of separation that mirrors my own: “By third or fourth grade […] you and your fellow students were “tracked” by this point, grouped into classes according to the results of standardized achievement tests.” (175) I was regurgitated into the lowest levels of math in the hopes that something would stick, but it never did. I might have had ADD or a learning disability. It's really all speculation at this point because it was never formally diagnosed. I wasn’t held back in school, but I never moved forward in math. Don't worry; this one is still a mystery to me as well. One possible explanation is found in the publication American Sociological Associated in an article entitled Who is Placed Into Special Education? “The school's limited resources may result in referral only being initiated for those students displaying extremely low academic achievement or much more frequent problem behavior.”(Hibel 315) It’s likely that this reflected my own circumstances. I may not have understood the subject of math very well, but I was usually well-behaved. Regardless, this process culminated in the worst semester of my life. I was a senior in high school that was stuck in a freshman level math class. Yeah, I was one of those. Even the freshmen considered it “idiot math.” So what did that make me? Every second of my life in that class reflected my growing attitude towards education. It was resentment and frustration; One long nightmare. Through these experiences I came to understand that there were many flaws in our system of education. It really takes a situation like this to be able to stand back and realize that the system of education we have in place is also subject to flaws. Kind of like realizing your parents aren’t perfect for the first time. It has...

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