The Instigator
Clayd
Con (against)
Losing
17 Points
The Contender
Danielle
Pro (for)
Winning
30 Points

Cyber School

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/19/2010 Category: Education
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 5,836 times Debate No: 14092
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (10)
Votes (8)

 

Clayd

Con

I believe Cyber Schools should not be an option for students in high school or lower. I will let my opponent go first.
Danielle

Pro

Thanks, Con.

My opponent has the burden of proof yet has failed to make an argument thus far.

I'll begin by pointing out that home-schooling students is still an option in the United States. Cyber-school would essentially be an extension of home-schooling, using online and other computer tools extensively as part of the education process. I see no problem with this whatsoever. Considering the importance of the internet in social media, networking, business ventures and other opportunities, utilizing the benefits of the world wide web could have significant advantages in terms of learning.

Encyclopedias were originally glorified as educational tools on the basis of them offering a significant amount of information all in one source. The internet offers this opportunity magnified innumerably. Online search engines put a vast amount of knowledge at your fingertips. You can use the internet to learn about a variety of subjects from a plethora of credible sources.

In short, utilizing the computer can be significantly advantageous to a student and a viable alternative to traditional schooling. One could use programs, tutoring or other methods to learn at their own pace. Lessons can be specifically structured to appeal and cater to the student's learning needs. The student will most likely be very versatile so long as they're encouraged to use the right methods to make learning optimal. For instance, I've taken several online college classes structured very similarly to the content on DDO. There were forums where the class would meet, get together and discuss certain topics. Conversation was just as engaging and thought-provoking as it can be on DDO. In fact using the internet as a medium was even positive insofar as encouraging more people to participate, appeasing those who are usually shy in person.

Young people can be taught to use similar techniques and mediums to make learning more engaging. I doubt my opponent will be able to provide significant benefits of attending school specifically. For example, while learning social behaviors and how to interact with others, make friends, etc. is significantly important, this is addressed by home-schooled children often being enrolled in a variety of outside activities such as sports, music lessons, community service, etc. It's entirely possible for home-schooled kids or kids who learn online to adjust normally and function well within society. There are plenty of informative websites that detail how to ensure the most versatile and complete learning experience for a home-schooled person [1].

There is no reason for cyber school to not be an option for students.

I now turn the debate over to my opponent to prove otherwise. Thanks and good luck.

[1] http://localhs.com...
Debate Round No. 1
Clayd

Con

Hello and thanks for your reply.

I am not sure if you are familiar with cyber schooling or not, but your point about cyber schooling helping students knowledge with the World Wide Web (Internet) is basically not true in most cases. Yes a student gets a laptop, and yes they use the program, but it is pretty much step by step setup for them. They use only one program and that one program surly cannot teach them much of anything about the web.

Now for my argument.

I believe there shouldn't be any type of homeschooling/cyber schooling. ( I meant them both in my title and you somewhat addressed homeschooling. Anyways, I believe it messes with a students social life, and all the benefits of going to an actual high school. First off, a college wont think as much of a student who got good grades in a cyber school, as much as they would a student who did it in a regular high school. I think we can all agree on that for obvious reasons. Secondly, the student misses out on all of the clubs and extracurricular activities the schools offer. Those are big things colleges look at. Also just the social impact of being apart of those clubs or sports usually has a great impact on students. (http://www.public.iastate.edu...)

Lastly, imagine if everyone went to cyber schools, then teachers would loose jobs. (In an economy that we are vigorously trying to get jobs for people) Many jobs would be lost. No such thing as a school board, all the food companies loose lots of business because the schools wont need to buy any food from them. Janitors loose jobs, lawn care company's, bus company's, lots of company's will suffer.

I just see Cyber school having a lot more cons than pros.
Danielle

Pro

Thanks for you prompt reply, Con.

My opponent begins by pointing out that cyber-schooling only uses one type of program. Quite obviously my response will simply be advocating a more complete curriculum requiring use of more than one program, and utilizing various tools to help improve the process.

Con's next contention is that colleges will not value the good grades of one who attended cyber-school as opposed to a traditional high school. He suggests this is for "obvious" reasons though there is nothing obvious about it to me. Why should one's achievements be discredited simply because they learned via a different method? The location of learning does not impact the actual knowledge the pupil demonstrates.

Con also brings up extra-curricular and social activities, though I've clearly already addressed this in Round 1. There are plenty of outside clubs and groups for kids to join apart from their school. For instance, Girls and Boy Scouts; recreational sports; church groups; music lessons; groups specifically for those who are home-schooled; etc.

Finally, Con says that if people were cyber-schooled teachers would lose jobs. That is not true. Who would run the cyber-classrooms? Educators would still be necessary to tutor and teach the information, as well as provide the lessons, do the grading and assignments, etc. Also, the scenario Con introduces in which human labor becomes obsolete in the face of growing technology is actually rooted in flawed economic reasoning demonstrated by Luddite Fallacy [1]. While it's true the market may no longer need as many school janitors or lunch ladies, it will need more people for computer programming, marketing various cyber schools, etc. Therefore the need for human labor doesn't go down; instead the type of labor needed changes [2].

With that said, my opponent has yet to provide any good reasoning as to why cyber schooling should not be an option.

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org...

[2] Easterly, William. The Elusive Quest for Growth: Economists' Adventures and Misadventures in the Tropics. Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press. pp. 53–54.
Debate Round No. 2
Clayd

Con

Thanks for the reply.

In response to you saying "advocating a more complete curriculum requiring use of more than one program, and utilizing various tools to help improve the process" I don't think they would ever do that for one reason. Their goal isn't to teach students about the web or computers. Their goal is to teach them about the subjects all the students are learning. So they would make the program as simple and as easy as possible, and most likely in 1 program.

As for my "obvious" reasons, I mean the students getting the social affect of traditional schooling. Also the affect teachers have on students. Teacher give lectures and push students to do their work. They are the kids parents wile the parents are at work. Most parents would much rather their kid be at school following rules than be at home by themselves all day. Also I've read that colleges are skeptical of accepting Cyber Schoolers just for the fact that it's not the traditional way of schooling. And that for them to have a good chance they need to score better than traditional schoolers on the SAT's just to have an equal opportunity. You also explain how kids could go out and find clubs, my argument is, is that actually reasonable? Most kids would't go out looking for a club, they would just be happy they are out of traditional school. I know this because I am in traditional school right now. But if the kids went to traditional school, then they would see their friends playing sports and teachers urging them to participate in some sort of extracurricular activity. Thus making it a much bigger chance of the student actually doing it.

Also, we are all well aware of the obesity problem in the United States. Which is why a lot of school districts are stressing the importance of gym class. Well students in Cyber School wont get the advantage of participating in gym class. I could also argue that students could actually get a lot lazier by Cyber Schooling. They wouldn't have to wake up early in the morning and get ready, they wouldn't have to walk around, up/down stairs. And they would have to participate in gym. Most kids aren't even going outside right now in America, so that exercise in gym class they got could be some of the only exercise they've gotten all day.

You say teachers wouldn't loose jobs, because they would have to operate the classrooms, well once again I will point out that you must not fully understand the fundamentals of Cyber Schooling. When signing up for Cyber Schooling, students choose weather they work offline with no teacher and just answer questions that are automated, or they choose a live online class with a teacher. Surly students would choose the online class with a teacher, but they would also choose the offline class. Meaning without a doubt teachers would loose jobs. Then you say human labor wouldn't be lost, it would just change. I'm not sure if you know, but programming is a lot harder than cutting grass and mopping floors. It is completely unreasonable to expect people to go to school and learn how to program for this. So there would definitely be a huge amount of job loss's.

I await a response.
Danielle

Pro

I'd like to thank my opponent for this debate :)

To start, Con says cyber schools will not utilize more or better programs, because their goal isn't to teach the kid about the web or computers. However nowhere did I ever suggest that the kids would use more programs to learn about computers. Instead I said they should have a more *complete curriculum* which could require more than one program. Additionally it was my opponent himself who suggested the students learn about the web (from R2: "They use only one program and that one program surly cannot teach them much of anything about the web" - Con).

Con says cyber schools will make "the program" incredibly easy and whatnot. I don't think Con understands the nature of cyber school. When I took online classes, we used a program (Blackboard) which essentially was a medium for teachers and students to interact. The teacher would use the program to post assignments, start discussions, engage the class in forum debates, submit assignments, post notes, look at slides, etc [1]. This program has absolutely nothing to do with the class's curriculum -- it was simply an amazing internet tool to help run the class smoothly and allow for an engaging and educational experience. You can teach almost all subjects through this medium.

Next, Con says the kids' social experience will not be that of "traditional" schooling. First, I don't think this matters considering they're still being socialized with outside activities. If socializing refers to social relationships, then this can just as easily be achieved outside of school, so I don't feel this is a strong contention. One researcher notes, "Child psychologists point out that children do very well when they can operate on a one-to-one basis or work in small groups of two or three or four. But strain often shows when they meet with classroom-size or larger groups for typical all-class activities... The quality of a child's sociality depends not so much on how many children he plays with as it does on his emotional stability, his sense of self-worth, and his unselfish concern for others" [2].

On that note, psychologist Donald Felker states, "From the time the children enter school they show a steady downward trend of self-concept as they meet the pressures of the early school years. An implication of this is that the very nature of school is detrimental in its effect on children's self-image" [3]. In that case, school can actually be detrimental to the socialization of some kids.

Second, there was a time when home-schooling was the norm (think of our Founding Fathers -- they turned out okay). People had perfectly fine social relationships when that was the case; in fact, some studies suggest we're less social and more isolated than ever. Also, interacting with people via the internet is still interaction of some kind. There's a reason Facebook is called a "social network."

Finally on this point, cyber schools can easily have functions that allow kids to meet up and have outside activities (at the discretion of their parents of course). One major flaw in my opponent's criticism is that he keeps thinking of how cyber schools are *now* and assuming the standard will stay like that in the future. I disagree. I think as these schools got more popular, economic competition would spur a ton of great ideas to make this option a success. Nevertheless I'm not sure my opponent has even painted an accurate portrayal of what online classes are like now but I digress.

Con's next argument is "Teacher give lectures and push students to do their work." Quite obviously the same would apply to cyber school. However Con's real point here is that parents want their children babysat by an adult instead of sitting in front of a computer all day. I feel this contention is completely irrelevant. Con said in the opening round that he does not believe cyber school should be an option. For the parents who DO choose this option (i.e., because they don't work or because their kids are older) cyber school should be permissible. Con cannot say parents don't want something they choose.

My opponent writes, "I've read that colleges are skeptical of accepting Cyber Schoolers just for the fact that it's not the traditional way of schooling." If cyber school got more popular, this would no longer be an issue. Moreover once again it should be an OPTION to choose cyber school regardless of this statistic. The student may not want to attend college, or may not think their chances of admission are severely affected. Regardless, Con's assumption is negated by the actual statistics. According to the research, home-schooled candidates very often become top college prospects thereby negating this point entirely [4].

Con writes, "Most kids would't go out looking for a club, they would just be happy they are out of traditional school. I know this because I am in traditional school right now." This is a completely illogical and fallactious assertion that simply does not follow. How can Con attending a traditional school speak for those NOT attending traditional school? It seems he cannot relate to their experience whatsoever, so his opinion really has no bearing. Further it wouldn't be up to the children to get themselves socialized in outside activities; that would be the parent's job.

Con also says that home-schooled kids don't get the advantage of gym class. Of course home-schooled kids can still get regular exercise, so this is not a strong argument. More importantly, Con mentions the home-schooled child potentially becoming lazy, unmotivated or a couch potato. My response is that it's not the government's job to ensure this is not the case. Parents are parents; legislators are not. My opponent contends that cyber school ought to not be an option, i.e., be legally impermissible. However the State saying they want to make sure children don't wind up fat and lazy is clearly not a legal and especially not practical reason to prohibit such a thing. It would be entirely unconstitutional to even suggest this. Plus, kids sit down during most of school anyway. Because cyber-schooling would require less hours (no fluff time - just education) it would actually give kids even more time to go play outside or get moving.

Finally my opponent completely disregards my presentation of the Luddite Fallacy. As I explained, the job market will shift. Yes programming requires more skill level than say cutting grass, but this rebuttal fails for two reasons. First, the mowing lawn job market will not be affected by cyber school's existence, so those whose only skill is to cut grass will still have a job. It will be the *teachers* Con suggests are out of work in this example. Clearly teachers are skilled and educated; I see no reason why they couldn't say change their college major from Education to Computer Programming (if they really wanted to get a job and make money). That about sums up my second point: the job market will shift because people will adapt to the demands of labor. Right now there may not be a lot of computer programmers, but as we become increasingly reliant on the internet, that will surely change - I assure you.

Once again my opponent also makes the mistake of assuming the way things are now, or SOME (bad) cyber school policies will always be in effect. This of course is unreasonable. Programs can be altered; curriculum's can be tweaked; rules can be changed. Thus in conclusion, my opponent has not given us any reason to prohibit cyber schooling. Meanwhile, I've proven that kids can still become just as educated and socialized via this method. Thank you.

Sources:

[1] http://www.blackboard.com...
[2] http://vftonline.org...
[3] Felker, Donald. Building Positive Self-Concepts. Burgess Publishing Co. Minneapolis, MN. 1974.
[4] http://www.post-gazette.com...
Debate Round No. 3
10 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Grape 3 years ago
Grape
Just a pet peeve of mine: a plethora means an excess or an overabundance of something. It does not simply mean there is a lot; it means there is too much. Lwerd, are you sure you meant that there is "a plethora of credible sources" on the internet (in Round 1)? I ask this not sarcastically but because it is just as likely that I made an error in interpretation as it is that you made an error in diction.

I'm not trying to be a jerk by pointing this out as your writing is very good.
Posted by Danielle 3 years ago
Danielle
RFD:

Before - Pro, obviously

After - Pro, obviously

Arguments - Pro, obviously

S/G - Pro, for the reasons tvellalott already mentioned

Sources - Pro, as I used 7 relevant sources and Con used 1.

Conduct - Pro. Not only did Con vote-bomb me and give himself 7 completely undeserved points, but he got someone else to do the same thing on his behalf. Also he was the instigator (so had the burden of proof) yet did not post an opening round and shifted the burden onto his opponent to do so, which is bad conduct.
Posted by tvellalott 3 years ago
tvellalott
Also, while we're questioning each others votes, why did you give yourself the conduct point, the sources point and the spelling point?
Posted by tvellalott 3 years ago
tvellalott
I can find more if you want. You hardly used any punctuation in your second round.
Posted by tvellalott 3 years ago
tvellalott
"Janitors loose jobs, lawn care company's, bus company's, lots of company's will suffer."
Should be "Janitors will lose jobs; lawncare companies; bus companies; lots of companies will suffer."
Posted by Clayd 3 years ago
Clayd
Wile I respect your thoughts, may I ask you to point my grammar mistakes out? I believe I used good grammar.
Posted by tvellalott 3 years ago
tvellalott
RFD
Who did you agree with BEFORE the debate?
theLwerd: I don't think the fact that Cyber/Home schools are the ONLY option for some students. Regardless, I think it should definetely be an option. Not allowing it restricts the options of how children are taught.

Who did you agree with AFTER the debate?
theLwerd: My opinion wasn't swayed by the Instigator.

Who had better conduct?
Tied. I don't think either were significantly better mannered.

Who has spelling and grammer?
theLwerd: I didn't see any spelling or grammer mistakes in Lwerds arguments, but her opponent had many errors.

Who made more convincing arguments?
theLwerd: Her opponent made many arguments about why cyber/home schools aren't as good as regular schools, but none as to why they should be abolished all together.

Who used more reliable sources?
theLwerd: Used many resources to support her arguments, while her opponent only used one.
Posted by lovelife 3 years ago
lovelife
I have just never heard an ACTUAL or relevant reason against it. Maybe its not for some students, but no one claimed it was right for everyone. Once that comes to light nothing opponents say seem to matter, and they often change their stance. Kinda like my dad.
Posted by Clayd 3 years ago
Clayd
What do you mean "What"? I think there shouldn't be cyber school. I'm letting her state her argument first.
Posted by lovelife 3 years ago
lovelife
What?
8 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 8 records.
Vote Placed by Grape 3 years ago
Grape
ClaydDanielleTied
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Vote Placed by Clayd 3 years ago
Clayd
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Vote Placed by Cunit0814 3 years ago
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Vote Placed by tvellalott 3 years ago
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