This paper discusses and outlines an education program that addresses the issues of diversity, discipline, and functions of schooling. This paper will cover among other concepts of education, social, philosophical, functionalist, symbolic-interactionist, and conflict theories of education in the school curriculum.
Diversity shall be dealt with through social setup, psychological developments, and physical facilities within the school and in the curriculum. To ensure that this school effectively addresses diversity, it will ensure that it does not only adopt a curriculum that deals with these issues on a theoretical concept, but also the outside practices that encourage, influence and thus trains the students to participate in accepting diversity and make it part of their lives. The practical aspects include absorption of a diverse workforce, students of different gender and educational needs, and provision of a wide variety of facilities to deal with gender, education, race, needs, cultural and traditional, political, religious and other differences. The implementation of the curriculum shall not favor any person to eliminate emphasis on the construction of the students in various classes of power, prestige, but it shall be as diverse as possible to ensure that it brings up students who can perform various functions in the society (Lemke, n.d.).
In order to make sure that the education covers issues of diversity, the school rules shall not discriminate against anyone who seeks to join it (either through employment or to get education services) on basis of minor differences such as race, traditional, cultural values, economic status or background among others, as long as the activities he or she is seeking are available or within the reach of the school, i.e. the school seeking assistance for services required by students from any other source. In ensuring that the school deals with differences among students the school shall employ diverse workers and employees to serve the students with special or common needs. This staff shall be empowered by the use of necessary resources. The administration shall establish the specific facilities which can be used by different gender, both the staff and the students to ensure that privacy is available for all. Usage of these facilities shall not be discriminatory. These facilities include education programs, specialized teaching staff, education programs focusing on women and men and issues affecting them separately. The curriculum shall be modified to ensure high standard socialization among the gender, through appropriate education on socialization. This shall be also used in an effort to ensure that the students understand issues of diversity. The students shall be encouraged to participate in cultural competitions organized among group schools to ensure that they find an interest in culture and pick up if their line of specialization is that. In these sports and other co curricula activities, individual skills, which are necessary to identify the social placement of an individual, and group skills will be recognized, developed and rewarded and offered a chance for contribution to school and other societal developments (Antikainen, 2003).
All the staff shall be provided with the necessary empowerment to understand the need to treat every student in a diverse-sensitive manner i.e. addressing issues of differences in race, color, region, preferences and other differences. This is through the incorporation of sociology and psychology courses that address diversity issues of race and others, how to identify differences and difficulties, the benefits of dealing with diversity issues positively and appreciating the differences amongst themselves. This is through the careful introduction of courses depending on the level of education. At higher levels where teachers are trained, the courses shall be required to be intensive and more specifically focusing on a diversity of religion, culture, tradition, color and other differences.
In order to ensure that performance is a key focus, the learning facilities shall be very important in the school’s management. The facilities include human resources like teachers who shall be availed according to the number (ratio) of students registered with us. Because theory has it that class practices may influence student performance, enough teachers compared to the ratio of students in the school will ensure that effective practices and focus on an individual student and encouraging individual participation in the learning process is at best possible. Students shall be engaged by teachers during the passage of the learning materials in order to participate in learning. Intrusive sessions during the learning program shall be encouraged outside the normal classroom sessions. These include participatory discussions, physical education and practice, participation at the clubs especially at higher levels of education, for example from the elementary level. In addition, evaluation of individual students at all levels of education shall be enforced at all levels. Rewards at end of every term or learning period shall be awarded to the best-performing students to ensure competition at lower levels of education. There shall, in every year established a passing mark within all levels of education (which shall be revisited every year) which all students will be expected to reach or exceed, failure to which students will be put under more or extensive retraining on repeating the course until required improvement is made. Social promotion shall only be used at the lower levels of education and where the student fails three times under intensive or special assistance.
Diversity in the curriculum to enhance the performance of students with various physical and psychological needs shall be emphasized through various integration courses that solve these issues. For example, the curriculum shall accommodate the blind, physically impaired and mentally challenged in terms of compensating courses, monitoring and evaluation programs that refer and apply specifically to their cases. Teachers (who shall also have proper qualifications relating to diversity and students’ special needs) shall be instructed on how to deal with issues relating to diversity.
The schools shall also be ensured to put in place proper performance reporting measures including the use of report forms, and assessment forms at the end of every term or course at all levels of study. The reported performance shall include the aggregate and individual scores for all the courses attended. Student’s performance in every course shall be gauged according to the total marks of the entries into the exam, which shall constitute end-of-month assessment tests for all the months in every term (each running twelve weeks before closure). The final grading for the students for the whole year shall be an aggregate for all three terms, and students will be expected to score above 30% to make sure that they qualify for the next class, for all education levels. This is to make sure that students are hardworking and retaining individual competence. Argumentative skills shall be on focus through courses that encourage individuals to argue out their points of view and oppose their colleagues through argumentative discussions, especially at above elementary school.
Focus on discipline in and out of the classroom is of paramount importance in the curriculum, both to teachers and the students. The curriculum and the school program shall seek to instill into the students, disciplinary behavior that will assist them for a long time even out of school. Such discipline relates to the attendance of school and the classroom, performance, respect to others including the staff and the seniors, accountability to the parents, respect and obedience to the staff and other staff, and participation in the school programs as required. Disciplining shall be carried through the following activities teaching them the importance of respecting others, obedience, and accountability at different levels of the curriculum. At lower levels of education, students shall be encouraged to be obedient and respective and as they move from kindergarten to higher levels, they shall be trained to be more responsible for their actions relating to indiscipline and performance. Teachers in their day-to-day activities shall ensure this in and out of the classroom. Very strict measures shall be taken on very strict grounds where there are serious violations at higher levels of education. This shall be through physical punishment, suspension and expulsion, or any other punishment measures stipulated in the country or regional rules and regulations. The short suspension shall not exceed 15 days in total and a long one for a whole month, while expulsion must be proven as the option for a student, for example, participating in crime at school in unacceptable frequencies or commission of several similar or various non-disciplinary activities (following 4 cumulative short suspensions that translate to two prolonged suspensions for each level of education-On the third short cumulative suspension, the student shall be put under serious disciplinary corrective measures like provision of frequent counseling). The school shall also have disciplinary expectations and actions stipulated in the school’s rules and regulations. These stipulations shall deal with special cases of physical impairment, or mental challenges and day-to-day activities. Efforts to make sure that the students understand the regulations shall be ensured. The rules on suspensions and expulsions shall extensively be applied at elementary levels of education. At higher levels, student’s disciplinary measures shall also constitute reprimands and written warnings, and restrictions of privileges and detections.
The school shall consider the participation of parents in disciplining their children, and an efficient reporting system on students’ performance on disciplinary matters shall be availed at the end of every course completed. However, the parents shall be encouraged to engage the teachers and the school administrators about their sons’ and daughters’ disciplines during the course study to make sure that they follow up with their children and explain to teachers specific issues affecting their children for causative actions. To ensure that the above is possible, interactive forums between parents and children at various educational levels are conducted once in every period of course study. Attendance to these forums shall be made compulsory. During this time, the parents shall be explained to, the importance of monitoring discipline and performance, not leaving the teachers to instill proper discipline for their children but to start it at home, using availed reports on student disciplines to help their children.
Teachers employed shall also be qualified in children and human psychology and sociology to make sure that they understand issues related to discipline. Teachers will be required to attend the forums with the parents with appropriate analysis of their classes on matters of discipline and education performance. Teachers of the school shall be connected to outside opportunities where discussions are held, useful educational materials, solutions to problems related to keeping discipline at school, ways of resolving non-disciplinary actions and punishment, the relationship between performance and crime or indiscipline, the relationship between (impact on psychology) and ways of punishment, and ideas relating top student performance, discipline and their relationship to diversity, functions of schooling and leadership in schools are exchanged between them. The curriculum needs to contain practices and discourses that formulate knowledge and where knowledge must be traced (Foucault 1976, 1980; qtd. in Agger, 1991).
In an attempt to eliminate chances for the administration of extra punishment of the students by the teachers, the school program will provide an avenue for the children and the parents to air out their own views concerning excessive punishment. The school regulating board will review the incidence and consider both sides, and actions for the teachers decided. This ranges from the imposition of fines, temporary expulsion or sacking of the offending teacher. Where the parent chooses to have the case dealt with by authorities other than the school administration, the teacher will have to take all responsibility. This shall be in an attempt to ensure that the schools administer preventive rather than curative measures. Measures that are necessary to make sure that disciplinary issues are covered in the school curriculum can be conceptualized in the work of Focault (1977) on Discipline and Punishment (qtd. in Agger, 1991).
Authority and curriculum administration
The implementation of the program shall be the work of the administration led by the school principal. The decision for implementation and adjustment shall be made from the top brass-a board meant for the curriculum implementation and review, which shall also make decisions involving other issues of administration of the program. In order to make sure that the curriculum is well implemented and revised; the board shall also include the views of the parents relating to the curriculum.
References and bibliography
- Agger Ben. Critical Theory, Poststructuralism, Postmodernism: Their sociological relevance. Annual Rev. Sociology. 1991.
- Antikainen Ari. Classical Sociological Theories and the Modern Sociology of Education. 2003.
- Foucault, M., (1977). Discipline and Punish. New York: Pantheon
- Foucault, M., (1976). The Archaeology of Knowledge. New York: Harper & Row
- Foucault, M., (1980). Power/Knowledge. New York: Pantheon
- John Dewey (2005). Democracy and Education: An Introduction to the Philosophy of Education, New York: Cosimo, Inc.
- Joseph J. Chambliss (1996). Philosophy of education: an encyclopedia. New York, Taylor & Francis, 1996
- Lemke J. Important Theories for Research Topics on this website. Web.
- Nel Noddings (2007). Philosophy of Education. London: Westview Press
- Prospero: A Journal of New Thinking in Philosophy for Education. New York: Triangle Journals Ltd., 2004 Item notes: v. 10, nos. 1-4
- Thomas T. Tate. (2008). The Philosophy of Education: Or, the Principles and Practice of Teaching (Large Print Edition). London: BiblioBazaar, LLC