THOUGHT BOX: Is the Biden Education Plan DEAD on Inception Unless we Develop Generations of Academic-parenting Parents?
Before introducing the concept of academic-parenting, we want to go on the record. Based on decades of documentation, we support preschool expansion because evidence shows the necessity for it. And would support two additional years of high school because evidence shows a need for it as well. And we believe the presidents’ plan, “as we currently understand it,” will not create the long-term education changes this country needs without empowering and engaging parents to build a better student and support them. Is the concept perfect? No. And we are still looking for something better for parents (not the government) to do with and for their children. The only thing The Afterclap would ask of all levels of governance, is to support the concept of parents helping their children.
All data implied above and shown below was provided courtesy of elements of the United States Government. Meaning that somebody in Washington D.C. should know and understand the data indicated and shown in this post.
Academic-parenting is a concept that grew out of my early studies of how to improve the Quality of the Condition of Education at the school my youngest attended at the time. And from several surprising and unexpected admissions by fifth and sixth-grade parents challenge to help and support their child at home. By the fall of 2008, I had a solution and a descriptive name. I believed then and still do, there is a need for academic-parenting. Currently, I am functioning as an Autodidact Education Anthropologist whose primary concern is for the Quality of the Condition of Learning, not education. You will see below a tiny portion of the evidence showing the need for academic-parenting skills in the last part of this post.
In a general sense: Academic-Parenting is activities you can do with your kids to prepare them for Learning in a formal Teaching environment and support them through High school graduation. The goal is to keep it super simple. And the following academic-parenting reading exercise is an example:
1. Reading to your child before they know how to read, and then discussing what you read with them.*
2. Reading the same book or text with them as they learn to read. Then discussing it afterward.*
3. Reading together. Not necessarily the same book or text. Or even at the same time. Then discussing what each of you read.*
* Discussing is not a lecture. It is a conversation where all parties are comfortable expressing themselves. Effective communication between you and anyone is identical to building a bridge. The longer you build on the bridge and keep it open, the stronger it becomes. But if it collapses, it is hard to rebuild. And children (bless them) may occasionally be trying. The goal is to keep them comfortable and the communication bridge open as you use your parental authority to address the situation.
I suspect many of you found the KISS reading exercise familiar. And while it is simple, it is not necessarily easy. One of the goals envisioned with the academic-parenting concept in 2008 was to become multigenerational, building on the success of the previous generation of parents by the new generation of parents. And this short description is not the whole story. When I spoke to my local school board about academic-parenting in October of 2008, I was laughed at when I opened my presentation by stating we need to engage and employ 25,000 parents in our school system. But they weren’t laughing by the time I finished. They were impressed enough with the concept to schedule another meeting to discover if the District could engage and employ 25,000 parents. Eventually, the District gave up on the idea. And while I was hopeful, I was not surprised. Today unlike then, I can show evidence there is a need.
The following section shows a tiny amount of the fact-checkable evidence from the National Assessment of Education Progress (NAEP) measurements of academic scholarship.
1971 Parental Education impact on 17-year-old student acquisition of Reading Proficiency; TABLE 1: Parent Education Level and Corresponding Percentage of available Points earned by Mean or Average Score(1):
> Not a high school graduate = 52%
> Graduated high school = 57%
> Some education after high school = 60%
Mean or Average Score percentages in Table 1; are the equivalent of a classroom grade and a letter grade of an “F” if the minimum classroom proficiency threshold were a 70 or better.
1978 Parental Education impact on 17-year-old students learning of Mathematics Proficiency; TABLE 2: Parent Education Level and Corresponding Percentage of available Points earned by Mean or Average Score(2):
> Not a high school graduate = 56%
> Graduated high school = 49%
> Some education after high school = 61%
> Graduated college = 63%
Mean or Average Score percentages in Table 2; are the equivalent of a classroom grade and a letter grade of an “F” if the minimum classroom proficiency threshold were a 70 or better.
I am skipping past more than Forty-one years of additional evidence to 2019.
2019 Parental Education impact on 12th-Grade student acquisition of Reading Proficiency; TABLE 3: Parent Education Level and Corresponding Percentage of available Points earned by Mean or Average Score(3):
> Did not finish high school = 54%
> Graduated high school = 54%
> Some education after high school = 57%
> Graduated college = 59%
> Unknown = 51%
Mean or Average Score percentages in Table 3; are the equivalent of a classroom grade and a letter grade of an “F” if the minimum classroom proficiency threshold were a 70 or better.
2019 Parental Education impact on 12th-Grade student acquisition of Mathematics Proficiency; TABLE 4: Parent Education Level and Corresponding Percentage of available Points earned by Mean or Average Score(4):
> Did not finish high school = 44%
> Graduated high school = 45%
> Some education after high school = 49%
> Graduated college = 54%
> Unknown = 42%
Mean or Average Score percentages in Table 4; are the equivalent of a classroom grade and a letter grade of an “F” if the minimum classroom proficiency threshold were a 70 or better.
What you have seen is the impact of the parental educational level of students near or during their last year in high school. This post is a quick snapshot of the beginning and latest results of a 41 year-plus window of data and does not include 13-year-old and 8th-grade results.
Parental Education Impact: is a sensitive issue for more than the two reasons shown here:
One, I have yet to hear or read an open discussion of the impact of adult knowledge on their kid(s).
Two, some people focus feed and foster the public narrative around economics while ignoring or unaware of the impact of parents’ education level.
The failure to bring this information to the public forum is detrimental to improving the Quality of the Condition of Learning.
If you have made the mistake of presuming, I am stating we haven’t made some improvements. We have! One example, we don’t institutionalize children diagnosed on the Autistic Spectrum as much anymore. In 1999 a member of the medical profession suggested my wife and I place our youngest in an institution. We lost my wife to complications from cancer in 2004. And I have been a single parent since. As for our youngest, he will receive his master’s degree in history later this month. There was no Individualized Education Plan (IEP) or 504 plan for students when I was in school. And if you look at the 1971 or 1978 “Graduated from high school” results, I was below that average during the birth through high school graduation years. Yet, I was promoted every year on time. I did not know of a term describing what happened to me until then, governor of Texas George Washington Bush started talking about “No Child Left Behind” in 1999. I did not become a student until after I was 21-years old. Before that, I was in survival mode. And if you ever felt lost when you could not help your child with their homework as a parent, I know how you felt. Forty-eight years later, I am not that 21-year-old. I have worked at making up for the lost opportunities at Learning.
At, The Afterclap we translate large-scale Standardized Test measurement systems through a process named “Calculating the Percent of a Perfect Score.” This KISS (keep it super simple) method converts results to a percentage and equivalent classroom grade. This translation eliminates the need for an education authority to tell you what they want you to believe. Or provide an explanation you may not understand. The process was created by a Founder of The Afterclap. He spent nine years serving on Public School Councils with a Georgia legislated expectation to make positive suggestions to improve the Quality of the Condition of Education in the school he served. And be able to explain how well students performed on large-scale standardized assessments to parents and interested stakeholders. As a parent, he understands the implications of the Classroom Grade and suspects you do as well. If your child brings home a grade of 57, the score eliminates some questions and opens the door to specific targeted questions from “what did you learn today?” To, “what have you not learned yet?”
Bruce Kendall, Founder
We Translate Standardized Test results for Stakeholders because we care enough to do what nobody else does. Make the results understandable.
(1) 1995 > Digest of Education Statistics > National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) Long Term Trends. > “Table 105. Average student proficiency in reading, by age and selected characteristics of students: 1971 to 1992.”> Where the earliest year listed for Parental education impact on 17-year-olds in “Reading Proficiency” was 1971. https://nces.ed.gov/programs/digest/d95/dtab105.asp
(2) 1999 > Digest of Education Statistics > National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) Long Term Trends. > “Table 123. Average mathematics proficiency, by age and by selected characteristics of students: 1973 to 1996.” Where the earliest year listed for Parental education impact on 17-year-olds in “Mathematics Proficiency” was 1978 https://nces.ed.gov/programs/digest/d99/d99t123.asp
(3) 2019 National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) Reading, Grade 12, Parental education level, from 2 questions [PARED] and National jurisdiction. https://www.nationsreportcard.gov/ndecore/landing
(4) 2019 National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) Mathematics, Grade 12, Parental education level, from 2 questions [PARED] and National jurisdiction. https://www.nationsreportcard.gov/ndecore/landing