Write About Education

In my native country, the government made a law about education. All children by six years old must go to elementary school. After level six, they have to go to middle school, and then go to high school. After that, they take a public test to see if they can get a score to go into college. If they pass the test, they'll get a graduate certificate.--Laikan

Public education begins in elementary school in my country. Before elementary school, there is a kindergarten; however, it depends on how much you can afford. The children who become 8 years old start to go to school. After six grades, they graduate from the school and start middle school. It is for 3 years and after that, they become high school students for 3 years also. The higher the grade in school, the heavier the burden of study. When they enter the third grade of high school, they have to prepare for the test for college or university, like the SAT in America. At that time, they can't sleep, play, watch TV or enjoy their free time. Their only concern is the test and the score of their class. I underwent that experience. It was terrible. During the year, I gained weight and worried about why my score wasn't higher even though I studied harder and harder. Now, in my country, that has created a serious problem because if the students go to the university after the hard test, perhaps they think they are free so they don't think about their university class anymore. Almost all people, parents and even students think only about entering the university and how high a score they need to get in. I don't like this school system of my country so I always wanted to go to school in America. I think there are other problems in my country's school system also, although I can not mention them here.--Eun-Suk

The schools in Russia have many differences with those in the U.S. Usually a kid goes to school at 6 years old and finishes at 16 years old. There are 9 levels (middle school) or 11 levels (it's called high school). Everyone has a chance to choose middle or high school. I studied 11 levels and then I studied 4 years at the university. Our schools are free, and we also have private schools. I think our education is excellent. We have many kinds of various subjects that fit in different spheres of life. Our universities are mostly free for students. You have to pass some exams. If you can't pass, you can choose some preparation courses to pass exams. Also, if you don't want to lose one year, you can choose commercial courses. That means you have to pay for the courses. It's expensive. There are state and commercial universities in Russia. The state university is supposed to be better than the commerical one because at the end of study you get a state diploma. When you try to find some job, the state diploma is higher than the commercial one. Of course, it isn't so important at the interview. You have to show all your skills :) That's why I advise you to visit Job Preparation on the second floor, Room 226.--Julia

In my native country, it is mandatory for all children to go to school. Before they go to school, the parents go in a building and write the names of the kids who are seven years old. The parents next get a letter that says what school they must go to. In Russia, it is all public high school. The school year is 9 months. Students start to study in school the first of September and finish on the 5th or 6th of June. The school day is 8-10 hours. When the students finish studying level 4 at the end of high school, they have an examination. The students who don't pass then go in this class a second time. The students study twelve years. The student has a journal where the teacher checks what the student has studied. Once a week the parents must look at it and write their signature. More teachers in school are women. The test in school is different than in America. We don't have answers "a, b, c, d." The test in Russian schools is more for remembering the rules. The student reads a classic book and writes a composition. They write more dictation. Once a week the teacher reads a story and the student writes an essay or the student writes about the theme for what they read yesterday. In school all day the teacher can demand the students repeat the old rules. I think my mathematics teacher was very intelligent and smart. His homework was very hard and very interesting. When I studied this subject all the students looked at the teacher like a god. His material was very good and clear. The personality of the teacher was very strong. This teacher was a model for me. I think of him all my life.--Iosif

There are some differences in education between my native country and here. Here classes are informal. You can discuss with your partner, drink something, go to the restroom and so on. When you answer or ask a question, you never stand up. However, in my native country the class is very serious. You can't discuss, drink, or go to the restroom. If you need to, you must ask the teacher. I feel the rule is crazy. When you ask or answer a question, you have to stand up so as to respect the teacher. Another thing I hate about the Chinese education system is if you want to go to college, you will need a high score. So the teacher is always cramming in the knowledge. You must finish plenty of practice so that you can get a high score. I hate the education system.--Ricky

I want to talk about the differences in classroom customs between my country and here. When I came to this school the first time, I was surprised about teachers and students. Students call the teachers by their first name but I didn't before. If I did that in my country, that would be a big mistake. The next difference is about rules. There are a lot more rules in my country's schools than here. We need to have a more polite attitude toward the class and teachers in my country and we keep the class on time. I'm used to those customs so sometimes I make a mistake--Giryun

In Comoros, kids go to French school starting when they are 5 years old. However, most of them start Koranic school two years before taking the regular educational program, which lasts 13 years, from elementary school to high school. The school discipline tends to be relaxed and both the sexes mix, not following the strict and rigid Islamic influence, maybe because of the multiple different origins of the population. Teachers are not so strict as sometimes in Koranic schools, and students usually keep friendly relationships with their teachers. I especially remember one teacher who has become the first widely-known writer in Comoros and with whom I went dancing in clubs many times when I was finishing my high school.--Ali

In my native country, the children must go to school. We have public and private schools. It takes 12 years to finish elementary and high school in my country. In public school, elementary and high school is free. However, in the private schools, you have to pay your tuition fee. We start to go to school in the month of June and go until March. We have ten months of school Monday through Friday, but Saturday and Sunday all the schools are closed. The class begins at 7:00 and goes until 11:30 AM. Then afternoon is from 2:00 to 4:00 PM. You should wear your uniform. If you don't wear your uniform, the teacher doesn't want you to come to school or else you have to pay 20 pesos. The money is used for school improvements. After you finish elementary and high school, you don't have to take a test. When you get into college you must take an NCEE (National College Entrance Examination). For taking a vocational course, there's no need to take an exam.--Maribeth

In my native country, we can educate ourselves in different ways, and it is free. Like my strict parents who I like very much, the schools are strict too. We have had women and men teachers. I remember my school had one special teacher. She was a math teacher, and very very strict. I love her and I always remember her. She told us to study hard and build our future.--Roza

In my native country, I finished the university courses after sixteen years. Elementary school was six years, middle and high school six years, and university four years. In public school the study fee was very cheap and private schools were very expensive. Recently, elementary school was made mandatory for all children. In most village areas, some families need their children to work on the farm to earn money, so they lose their education and become educationally blind, but in the big cities such as Shanghai, Kwangchow, and Peking, most children have complete education and even go to the U.S. universities to study. In China middle school, high school, or college, you must take a test. If you don't pass the test, you won't get into the next school. In middle or high school, the study method is the teacher is teaching and the students are listening. Sometimes if you have a question, they allow you to ask it. In the university, the students read books and gather to discuss them.--Tony

When I came to San Francisco, I started to study in City College. At the same time my daughter also started to go to kindergarten. I found the education is much different from my native country. Here the teachers teach the students through different activities which are from life, so the students are very interested in studying and it also develops the student's thinking and creativity, but there is only a little homework. In my native country, the students have a lot of homework from the first grade. The homework takes them a lot of time and they don't have time to play. They feel studying is a very hard job for them and they are afraid of studying sometimes. I like the education here. If the homework were a little more, that might be much better.--Emily

In Russia it is mandatory for children to go to elementary and middle schools, and it is mostly free. If you want to improve your knowledge, you should go to high school, but it is voluntary. Middle school children learn many interesting and also difficult subjects like math, native and foreign literature, geography, physics, chemistry, history, biology etc. It takes a lot of time to study, especially at high school. After you finish high school you will be examined for all the disciplines you studied. We have a lot of universities in Russia and they are very good and mostly free. If you graduated high school and you want to be a student of a university, you must pass the difficult exams. Nowadays, many young people wish to study at the universities but they don't have money for living and they are forced to find a job instead of getting an education.--Irina

When I was in elementary school, my class had 40 students, and I had a man teacher for about 4 years. Now, my son is in 3rd grade. His class has only 20 students, and they change class every year. Lunch time is different, too. We didn't have a snacktime and we had to have a school lunch every day. My son brings his own lunch from home, but they can have a school lunch if they want to. I think from my experience that American teachers are more friendly than Japanese teachers.--Miho

In my country, we have three kinds of schools, public, Catholic, and private. The Catholic and private schools cost money, but the public schools are free. In my country we have to come to school Monday to Friday. The time goes from 8:00 AM to 1 or 2 PM depending on the day, and we have ten months of class and two months of vacation. The differences between my country and this country is that when the teacher enters the class, the students have to get up. Another difference is when the teacher asks you something, you have to get up.--Cristina