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Original post made by aman, Stanford, on Jun 18, 2007

The stress placed on kids now is much more
It may not be obvious but the stress to compete academically has been ratcheting sky high over the last few years - putting some of our Paly Kids under tremendous stresses. Some of this is self inflicted by groups who do everything for an A but not alot for the community at large.

enough said

Comments (5)

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Posted by Lin
a resident of another community
on Jun 19, 2007 at 9:08 am

I sympathize with what you're saying, but the reality is that you can't have it both ways: PA has a great school district that attracts families who emphasize academics. That means kids will be academically-oriented and that competition will be at a higher level than in other school districts.

I'm not exactly sure where you're going with your allusion to these "groups" who strive for A's but don't get involved in the community. Just remember how the WASP establishment at Ivy League schools used to gripe about how Jewish classmates studied too hard. They put ceilings on Jewish enrollment in the name of preserving the "character" of their campuses. On the other hand, many denigrate some minority groups for supposedly being lazy and not achieving enough academically.

So it can be "damned if you do, damned if you don't" for non-white people in this country: you're criticized for doing too well academically or criticized for not doing well enough. Be careful that your griping about certain "groups" doesn't veer into simple-minded prejudice.

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Posted by Walter_E_Wallis
a resident of Midtown
on Jun 19, 2007 at 11:25 am

I want Palo Alto schools to excel. I want Palo Alto industry to excel. If the right slope of the curve accomplishes that, so be it.

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Posted by PAUSD Booster
a resident of Midtown
on Jun 25, 2007 at 7:31 am

Well, it's good kids learn to deal with stress young because it will prepare them for real life after school.

Most High Schools in other countries spend more time in school per day, at least an 8 period day, plus 2 hours of homework. The kids in other countries go to school for more days per year. In some countries it's as much as 218 days per year.

Since high school kids in California have a shorter academic day and fewer days per year in school; if they can't deal with that, they will never compete in an ever expanding global economy.

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Posted by Parent
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jun 25, 2007 at 9:44 am

The traditional reason for long summer breaks was to allow the children to be at home on the farm helping with the work that needed to be done. It was a given that if there was not this long break, there would be absenteeism in certain families that would make those children suffer from not being educated properly.

Nowadays, when the children are off school, they are not helping at the farm, or even helping at home. Instead, we are expected to entertain them, giving them fun things to do, camps, classes, etc. but certainly don't expect them to contribute anything (it may be different for older kids).

So I say, bring in a shorter summer break. Lets go on into July and then after Labor Day go back.

Oh, I forgot, the ones who won't have it are the teachers unions. Huh. I thought the time off was for the kids to work at home. Now I remember, it is for the teachers to have the long summer so that they don't have to put up with our kids for the long hot days of summer.

How silly of me.

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Posted by tired of bickering
a resident of College Terrace
on Jun 25, 2007 at 10:21 am

Back to the original comment, there are groups of parents in Palo Alto who provide all kinds of support for their child, academically and athletically, who don't participate in the community. Before someone yells that I'm being racist - I am not referring to any specific ethnic group.

Our school district is great partly because of our community and parental involvement. No one is required to volunteer, nor should they be. But I feel if your child is participating in any activity which is run by volunteers - AYSO soccer, a school carnival, etc., as a parent you have a responsibility to help in some way, even if it only by watching the game, thanking the coach or thanking the event volunteers.

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