Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Two Things I Love To Write About: The Military, and Education

Helicopter parents and Stinger teachers--ooh, I like it!

You see, I'm a former Air Defense Artilleryman. My first job as a lieutenant was Stinger Platoon Leader: I had upwards of 30 soldiers, 15 Stinger teams, under my command. I'll always have a soft spot in my heart for the Stinger.

Stinger earned its stripes in Afghanistan; we gave the missiles to Afghan "insurgents" who brought down many a Soviet helicopter during the Soviet intervention in that country. It was a most impressive weapon system, and I always enjoyed the few "live fires" we conducted at Fort Carson. Always hit the target, too.

So when I see an education article that, somehow, relates to Stingers and helicopters, I've got to read it.

"Helicopter parents" is a term coined a few years ago, describing those parents who "hover" around their children, especially parents of college students. They're so used to fighting for and "protecting" their children that they're a little taken aback when what worked in K-12 doesn't have much impact at all at a college or university.

With that background knowledge, go read the article.

1 comment:

Ellen K said...

What I can't figure out is why we still have to print and hand out and harass students for progress reports and other such official missives, when parents can and should be accessing these same exact documents online? We buy the software, build the websites and inform the parents, but they don't use them. And this is a very computer savvy group. I really think they don't WANT to know when their kid is failing. They would rather blame the teacher/boss/university than admit that their contrived plans for junior may actually come down to junior doing the legwork.