Presentation on theme: "WARM UP Write a short response to the following questions: 1. What are the most important elements of taking notes in class? 2. What do we need to know."— Presentation transcript:
WARM UP Write a short response to the following questions: 1. What are the most important elements of taking notes in class? 2. What do we need to know in order to understand a country’s system of education?
GOALS FOR TODAY Understand the basic structure of American and British educational systems. We will delve into more detail and into history later in the course.
WHO IS RESPONSIBLE FOR EDUCATION? Both the US and UK have a combination of centralized and decentralized responsibility for education. US: The US Constitution does not explicitly give the federal government control over education, which makes it the responsibility of individual states. However, the federal government can control the states in certain respects regarding funding, discrimination, and citizens’ rights. UK: The system of “devolution” gives certain independent powers to the individual countries of the UK (England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland), including the right to manage education. While we will largely focus on English education, which is centralized in the UK government, it is important to remember that there are some distinctions.
MANDATORY EDUCATION Both the US and UK mandate that children attend school for the majority of their childhood. US: Compulsory (mandatory or obligatory), like many aspects of education, is delegated to individual states. 1852 – first state – Massachusetts 1918 – last state – Mississippi Begins at ages 5-8, ends at ages 16-18 UK: Compulsory education varies slightly between the four constituent countries 1880 – Elementary Education Act made ages 5-10 compulsory. Today – compulsory education until age 16 Exception – Those born after September 1, 1997 must stay until age 18.
STATE FUNDING OF EDUCATION US: State-funded schools are called “public schools.” Public education is provided at no cost to all students for primary and secondary school. Most funding comes from local school districts and the state government, while a smaller portion comes from the national government. UK: State-funded schools are called “state schools,” NOT “public schools.” Funding comes from a combination of the national government and local government. These provide education at no cost for early childhood education, primary, and secondary school.
PRIVATELY FUNDED EDUCATION US: Schools with funding from a private source are called “private schools.” These are generally less regulated by state and national standards but they require their students to pay tuition to attend (average around $10,000 per year). The majority (80%) are religiously affiliated, typically Christian, with Catholic being the most common type. UK: Schools with private funding are known as “independent schools.” They also charge tuition (£12,000 per year on average). Primary level independent schools are often called “prep schools,” while secondary level independent schools are sometimes called “public schools.” While many are religious in character, religious schooling is not confined to private school in the UK.
SPECIALIZED STATE EDUCATION US: “Charter schools” receive less funding from the state but are also subject to fewer state regulations. They still offer free education to their students and typically choose students via a lottery system. Many have a particular focus such as the arts. “Magnet schools” are traditional public schools, but they are permitted to have competitive admissions and are often prestigious. UK: “Faith schools” are religiously-affiliated institutions, but the majority of them are state-funded and regulated. While they typically admit more of those who follow their religion, they generally accept others as well. “Academies” are state-funded but privately run (similar to “charter schools”) and generally specialize in a certain field. “Free Schools” are essentially the same as academies, but they can be set up by individual community members in response to their own needs.
EDUCATIONAL LEVELS – EARLY CHILDHOOD This generally refers to schooling for children around ages 3-5 who have not yet entered primary school. US: “Preschool” in the US is non-compulsory and includes private preschools, state-run preschool (which varies by individual state), and the federally-funded Head Start program for students whose parents are below the poverty line. These are frequently half-day programs. UK: “Nursery school” education is publically funded and provided free of charge to all UK children above the age of 3, though it is not compulsory. This is sometimes referred to as key stage 0 in the National Curriculum.
EDUCATIONAL LEVELS - PRIMARY This typically refers to the beginning of compulsory formal schooling – generally from ages 5 to 11. US: Primary schools are known as “elementary schools” and begin with Kindergarten (K), followed by the first few numbered “grades” – typically 1-5. UK: Primary schools include years 1-6 and correspond to key stages 1 and 2 in the national curriculum.
EDUCATIONAL LEVELS - SECONDARY This refers to schooling, generally compulsory, that takes place after primary education and before higher education. It generally covers the ages 12-18. US: Secondary schooling varies slightly from place to place, but generally includes two divisions. “Middle school” typically covers grades 6-8. Sometimes, elementary school is extended an extra year and “junior high school” covers grades 7-9. “High school” covers either grades 9-12 or 10-12 and culminates with “graduation” and the receipt of a diploma. UK: Secondary schooling covers years 7-13, which are classed into six “forms” (Forms 1-5, lower sixth, upper sixth). Types include grammar schools, comprehensive schools, city technology colleges, and city academies. After Fifth Form (Year 11), students take the GSCE, which determines how and whether they will continue their education. Key stages 3 and 4.
EDUCATIONAL LEVELS - HIGHER This refers to education beyond the secondary level that typically requires particular qualifications and is non- compulsory. US: Students with a high school diploma or equivalent may apply for admission to a university, community college, liberal arts college, or other institution offering a further degree. There are typically three levels of higher education degree: Bachelor’s, Master’s, Doctorate. The Bachelor’s traditionally is a 4-year program. There are public and private universities; the former are state-funded but still not free. UK: Students who do well on their GSCEs and continue through the Sixth Form study for A-level examinations, which determine their ability to study at university. The three-tiered system is similar to the American system, though a Bachelor’s is only 3 years. The majority of universities in the UK are publically funded, though they too still charge significant tuition. This is regulated by the UK government.
NATIONAL CURRICULUM AND EXAMINATIONS - US The US and UK have significant differences in how they assess their schools and students. US: Curriculum is typically decided at the state level, and uniform state tests, often given every year in secondary school, are becoming more common as criteria for graduation. National Exams: SAT: A privately-run aptitude test widely required by many colleges and universities for admission. ACT: Another private alternative to the SAT with a different format. AP: Private sequence of tests widely used by colleges and universities to award undergraduates with credit for introductory courses.
UK CURRICULUM AND EXAMS UK: The UK has a National Curriculum which applies to all state-funded schools except academies and free schools. National Exams: GSCE: Nationally administered exams giving qualifications marking the ending of compulsory education. A-levels: Nationally administered exams giving qualifications marking the ending of secondary school and possible university admission. BTEC: Qualifications for vocational degrees.
CRITICAL THINKING QUESTIONS What do you think are the most significant differences between these systems? How does this impact their students? Why do you think the US and UK have different approaches to religiously-oriented education? Why do you think secondary-level examinations and university admissions function so differently in these two countries? What do you think about the policies of “devolution” – to the states in the US and to the constituent countries in the UK? Would increased centralization harm or improve the system?