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Tyler Biggs

To continue the conversation between home and public schooling, I believe personal experiences people have had in the two systems speaks for themselves. I have attended public schools in my entirety, K-12, and the experience that I received undoubtably shaped me into the person I am today. I have also seen how homeschooling has positively effected some of my friends as well. The bottom line is, people want to provide the best possible education for their child to succeed. While both options have created some of the best intellectual minds, homeschooling doesn’t touch on all the factors of what an embodied experience can be and how it could affect a child’s life, but it contains aspects that still drive students to succeed. Public schooling also doesn’t meet parents requirements and it questions how as a nation we could assess these different views to obtain a better experience for every parent and student.
Parents around the nation are educating their children at home and a lot of it has to deal with the preferences. Stated in Making the Grade, “With reasons that vary from dissatisfaction with the public school curriculum and lack of discipline to preferences for Christian-based and culturally-centered education, African-Americans are keeping their children home from public schools and teaching them themselves.”(MTG) This preference parents are looking for with discipline towards Christian and culturally centered children is understandable. Public schooling doesn’t assess education through that perspective, and there may be benefits of incorporating these values along with public education. A possibility may be incorporating a poll for parents that see different perspectives for their child’s learning that they would like implemented in their education. Yes, violence and bullying do occur but homeschooling misses the aspect that deters them from what public schooling is. Embodiment. Cultures, races, and even religions are passed on throughout the halls of public schools everyday. Children become exposed to these traits and adds as a benefit to feel equal and surrounded by an active reality in which society is. It’s understandable that parents use this stance as a decision to homeschool going forth, as well as containing the benefit of more one-on-one time with students.
Every year, it seems that the mandated testing requirements become harder. Other nations have become influenced by the intense progression the United States have set forth. The government issues these standards by collections of past recordings which only come through public schools. If the government decided to include homeschooling as a private sector to see the progress and improvement that the students are making, this could help the government understand and realize the standards nationwide. As well as influence a parent’s decision on what style of education best suits their child’s progress. Students who are homeschooled don’t have the ability to record their test scores, but that doesn’t deter from the fact that the students can’t become as successful. Homeschool students like Sho Yano, a child prodigy with an IQ estimation of 200, who also earned a PhD from the University of Chicago at the age of 12.
While homeschooling has the great benefits of prevention of violence and bullying, increase of one-on-one aspects, and the ability to go at a personal learning pace, it doesn’t touch the reality aspect that we are all together in society. Races, cultures, and religions become exposed in the natural environment, and starting public schooling at a young age could help influence better communication skills with their individuals. Homeschooling understandably guides students to a path to success while still focusing on key aspects as they go along through education. Students become comfortably satisfied with their learning process and pace, and that’s a benefit when it comes to the government increasing the standards in public schools every year. My personal stance is within the public school systems and the rapid pace of education that changes each year and the exposure of a realistic society. But, I also agree that homeschooling has the benefits that help students succeed by personal paces, prevention of violence, and building connections while one-on-one.

Tyler Biggs

The media around the nation focuses on the problems and challenges of higher-education, and the view towards America’s community colleges has never really been brought to the stage. Even though higher institutions have these problems, community colleges are greatly affecting the data that is behind education. Should community colleges get more recognition than what they currently have? Brian Goedde of Community College of Philadelphia believes so, as he proposes a plan with tremendous potential in the May 2016 article in the New York Times.
Geodde introduces the audience to the State of the Union speech by President Obama in 2015. Geodde quotes Obama’s statements of community colleges that they are, “unsung heroes of America’s education.” He then states, “considering how big the market is: 1,655 community colleges nationwide(according to the federal Department of Education), constituting 47 percent of all college students enrolled at a public institution.”(NYT) Goedde concludes on Obama that he should speak at a community college graduation. He believes this should happen so it could stand out to the negative image and stigma it receives, while also inspiring graduates that their contribution to society is greatly needed and effected. Goedde is a professor at Washtenaw Community College, and he took his thoughts to his students. His students’ reactions were overwhelmingly positive and they kept referring to the statement of “unsung heroes” which gave them worlds of confidence. Goedde’s praise to the President isn’t shown without criticism. He refers to two parts of his speech in his article. The first is how he believes President Obama’s capstone of his presidency would be taking actions to lower the cost of community college to zero. Goedde doesn’t necessarily state a reaction if President Obama doesn’t pursue his efforts, but he is invested in the thought of the idea. If the efforts wouldn’t happen, Goedde’s reaction may be in a negative aspect. Lastly, he admits that him and his students didn’t appreciate the quote that the line of community colleges should be as “universal as high school.” Students believe this would make the associates degree the same value as a high school diploma.
In the class text of chapter 7, it address how authors establish the importance of what they are writing. Goedde answers the “So what?” and “Who cares?” questions by backing up significant data on how community colleges are needed. Like previously, 47 percent of all students enrolled through community colleges are within a public institution. Nearly half of the graduates come from community colleges, and the benefits of value and inexpensiveness(compared to higher institutions) greatly effects the education system. On a personal note, the school board of my high school gave me my last commencement speech but it was. Essentially, I was more basking in the moment of my achievement. If I had to chose a commencement speaker, it would have to be someone who has made a difference out of the same path I took. Someone who has produced well for themselves, for society, and is seen as a positive influence.

Justin White

If Goedde and Biggs are correct in saying that community college is a better choice for many students than going straight to a major institution, as I think they are, we need to reassess the popular assumption that community colleges are for those who can’t get into major institutions and provide a less quality education. Contrary to popular belief community college has a lot of benefits that a major university can’t provide. For one thing attending community college is much more affordable than a major college. A lot of states offer scholarships for community college that help keep prices down. Coming from a small town I know many people that have taken advantage of the community college system in South Carolina. In America we need people that work in every trade and a lot of trades don’t require a four-year degree. It doesn’t make sense for someone that wants to become a welder to pay for a four-year degree. Community colleges also provide small class sizes and an opportunity for people that take an untraditional route through college. One thing that is awesome about America is opportunity exists and not everyone has to do the same thing to become successful.


I agree with Justin White in his assessment that community colleges do provide benefits that some major universities cannot, though this is so different than the normal school of thought. I also agree that a community college does not mean a low quality education for those who couldn’t get into a major university. We automatically think that major universities are better in every way than community college because they have more resources. While they do have a bigger budget, this is and of itself can be a drawback of those major universities. The significantly smaller price tag associated with a community college is one of the biggest benefits they provide. We complain about the cost of education and how higher education is not available to everyone because of finances, but rarely do those complaining think about community colleges. They provide a good education with more specialized and smaller classes at a fraction of the cost of major universities. As White points out, many Americans find work within trades and do not need a four year degree for that. Just as we will always need people in these trades, such as plumbers and electricians, we will always need two year colleges. The stigma surrounding these schools does need to change. I’m not sure that it will, though. I do not know that the President delivering the commencement speech would change it. While it may boost the morale of the students and faculty at these schools, I do not think it would change the nation’s views on two year schools.


I completely agree with Justin White that community college is a great alternative for families that are unable to afford to go to a university, however, I wouldn’t go as far as to say they are better than going to a major institution, as a freshman that attends a major institution, there have been many more opportunities available to me than my twin sister who is a freshman at a community college. I would say that community college is better for those who cannot afford a major university all four year and for those who are in circumstances, with that being said I agree that there shouldn’t be a stigma that community college is only for those who couldn’t get into a university, there are too many different circumstances for people to make such assumptions. People who attend community college should be proud because they are also making steps to obtain a degree of higher education.


It is common place in the United States today to dismiss community college as a step down from a 4 year University, and if not for the Obama presidency this stigmatized ideology would have gone unchanged. Brian Geodde uses his New York Times article "Talk to Us, Mr. President" to voice his opinion on the issue. Geodde analyzes the change in thinking that has occurred since the current President took office, noticing change in both student pride in Community College as well as the general public opinion of Community College. Geodde uses his own experiences to shed light on this changing ideology, and his belief that public college education should be free to all.
Personally, I am on two minds when it comes to considering free public college education. While I do believe every young person should have the ability to attend a university, I also agree with critics on this lowering the value of a college degree. In America today every child must attend school through high school legally, but there is no requirement on university schooling. I feel that as long as it is not required to attend university, however the option is there if a student desires to continue onward, our children will become exponentially smarter. I definitely feel that if public college is made free, then the quality of material and the difficulty of community college should be increased, therefore balancing opportunity with challenge.

Lauren E

I disagree with the people above that free public education reduces the value of a college degree; I fully endorse that all young people should have the right to an education. The stigma against community colleges that they are for students who cannot attend a “real” college is bad. Students who take advantage of community college and then go on to transfer into a state college or university save a lot of money, so they do not finish school with thousands of dollars in dent. It is often said that the only difference between an English 101 class at Harvard compared to a community college is the amount it costs. Consequently, the students who go to community college to save money are the smarter ones because they are saving money in the long run.


I disagree with Lauren E’s post that says that free public college education does not reduce the value of a college degree. Although I believe that every student should be given a chance to further their education after high school, if every high school student got a free education the amount of college diplomas would rise, causing the value of them to drop. I also think it is unfair to give the students who work so hard in high school the same chance as those who do not do anything. Free college should be earned not just given out to every high school graduate. However, I do agree with her when she expresses that community college is a smart route to take because it saves students thousands of dollars. If a student can avoid two years of paying a college tuition and still has the chance to earn college credits, I believe that is a very smart and mature decision.


Professor and writer Brian Goedde explains in his article “Talk to Us, Mr. President” that America’s negative stigma around community college leaves a great void in pride in the student’s who attend but President Obama’s recent interest and focus on community colleges may be changing that. I agree with commenter Justin White in that the attending community college can often be the best option for individuals in regards to higher education, a point that needs emphasizing since so many people often overlook the value in attending community college. Those unfamiliar with this school of thought may be interested to know that it basically boils down to cost efficiency. I agree with White in that for many trades a four year degree is not necessary and the cost gives many individuals the opportunity to receive an education at a higher level, something that, in today’s society, is necessary to expand ones job opportunities.

Ruan Penland

I agree with Lauren E when she says that everyone should be given the opportunity of an education, even if that means a free education. I don’t think that this would devalue a college diploma because there will still be students who don’t have the work ethic to succeed in college. This would also open the door for more students to further their education and work towards more advanced degrees. If they were saving money on their undergraduate education, they might have more opportunities to attend graduate school. I also agree with the idea that community colleges are undervalued and it’s very good that President Obama is working to erase the negative image that is associated with these two year schools. They provide excellent opportunities for a much wider range of people.

Ryan Town

I disagree with users such as Justin who state that community colleges are not as good as a major institution. There are many people who use community colleges as a way to knock out their general education and then transfer into a major institution and can focus solely on the classes that will benefit their careers. In many cases, the people who go to community college to relieve the burden of college debt are smarter than those who are crippled by it. I think that President Obama has definitely created a shift in attitude at the ways that community colleges are looked at by the general public, and I think this is for the better. America falls severely low in lists of smartest countries. If the attitude for these institutions are more positive, than people are more likely to seek out an education and are more likely to better the country.

Brad S

I agree with Chris, who argues that Lauren E. believes free education is the way to go. If every high school graduate was allowed free education, there would be no prestige or value left in them. Giving everyone free college educations, awards those who didn't work hard in high school, and life in general, equal opportunity to students who work extremely hard. Now when students take advantage of two free years of college credit at community colleges, that's respectable. They are saving money and finishing out core classes, and getting a minor degree. But to give everyone free chances at receiving a major in a specialized field, just drops the value of earning that degree drastically.

Eliza W.

I agree with Brad S. when he talks about how college education shouldn’t be free because it decreases the significance of the degree and equates it to a high school diploma. Along with this point, I believe that another reasoning why community colleges should not be free is because it is highly implausible to give free tuition to all students who attend. Goedde states that there are “1,655 community colleges nationwide (according to the Federal Department of Education), which constitution 47 percent of all college students enrolled at a public institution.” I would like to believe that each one of these colleges could be free for students to attend, but who would pay for the tuition then? It seems as if there would be more problems with having free education than just the fact that degrees would not hold as much importance. I agree with Justin White when he states that a lot of states offer scholarships to help people attend community colleges. I believe that the argument of making college’s free is just a lazy response against the high price of tuition. I firmly believe that attending college is not a right for everyone, but a privilege.

Darian Owens

Brian goedde really cares for the students and knows what their going through, so he knows if Barack Obama gave a commencement address at a community college there will be less students ashamed of saying where they're attending school at. In Goeddes final statements he brought up Obama saying community colleges being "unsung heroes of Americans education system", and how those words made his students feel good about themselves, so if Obama would make a speech at a graduation this would open a big door of students proud to be apart of attending community colleges.


Goedde, author of the article Talk to Us, Mr. President, writes about the closed mindset of those attending community colleges nationwide. The negativity ranges in all ages attending these institutions, and Goedee can't seem to figure out why considering our own President Obama has talked so highly about community colleges and referred to those who attend as heroes. As a result, Goedee suggests that President Obama comes to a community college and recites a commencement speech, as it would mean so much.
Its pointed out that President Obama refers to community colleges as “undervalued assets”, and “unsung heroes of America's education system”. Thus, why Goedee would appreciate Obama giving a commencement speech at a community college. It would show the nation that community college matters in comparison to schools such as Harvard, Yale, and even Fairfield University who have had many prestigious figures previously speak. Not only to Goedde would it matter, but to those attending community college it would matter significantly. A speech by someone as notably recognized as the President, referred to one of community colleges biggest cheerleaders, it would put aside the negative mindset of community college and make them feel like they matter.
In sum, then, Goedee’s request to President Obama to give a commencement speech at a community college is a great idea and would be a wake up call for most of this nation and their views on community college.

Kate Lydon

President Obama’s initiative to help raise the graduation rate and make community colleges more accessible helped get rid of the stigma that surrounds community colleges. Goedde wants Obama to speak at the commencement of a community college because Obama did so much to promote the school spirit of community colleges and Goedde believes that the crowd would greatly thank him. “Here they are, diligently working in the shadow of a negative public image, and they find themselves the subject of great value in the words of the president” (Goedde). Community colleges flew under the radar and were so looked down upon for so long but thanks to President Obama he praised students of community colleges. Obama addressing a group graduating from a community college would be so powerful and so personal because he did so much to support them and to try to get rid of that stigma that they were not good enough.

Juliet T

As Geodde highlights in his piece, the need for Obama to give a commencement speech at a community college is not just to bring some school spirit to that individual school, it to rid our nation of the negative attitude toward community colleges. Since Geodde believes Obama has essentially been their biggest cheerleader, he states that it is crucial for Obama to give this speech as a way to help the junior college community believe that they matter just as much as any top tier university. President Obama references community college members as "unsung heroes of America's education system" thus implying the value that community colleges have while emphasizing the idea that more people need to recognize this idea. In conclusion, it is a very good idea to suggest that President Obama should give a commencement speech at a community college because doing so will help defeat the stigma even more than his previous positive references to education received at junior colleges.

Margot F

In Brian Goedde’s article, “Talk to Us, Mr. President”, Goedde discusses why he wants President Obama to give the commencement address at a community college. Goedde mentions how President Obama thought that the people who attended community college were heroes. He wants the president to give the speech because he thinks that it will encourage all of the students in community college and make them feel like they are normal. Brian Goedde thinks that Obama’s speech would matter to the people. Right now, the students at a community college are “diligently working in the shadow of a negative public image” (Goedde). If President Obama gives the commencement address at a community college, not only will it lift the spirits of the students attending a community college, but it will also be part of Barack Obama’s legacy.

Cady R

Goedde wants president Obama to give the commencement address at a community college because he feels as though Obama can make these students feel as though they are valuable members of the community. Goedde thinks that an address by Obama would matter so much because these students would look up to him. Obama called community colleges the “unsung heroes of America’s education system”. In this article, students talk about how they sometimes feel lesser for attending community college. For example, one student said “I would say I’m proud of myself for going here, but I wouldn’t say I’m proud of the school.” There is often a negative stigma associated with community colleges. However, if Obama were to speak at a community college, it would make students feel as though their educational experience is valid.

Brian Gozzo

Brian Goedde discusses a view that is shared by a majority of America, including those at community college, that community college is not a source of pride or accomplishment. If you were to conduct a survey of kids graduating at a high school, in my opinion, most would state a community college is not a desired or praised option for graduates. Community colleges carry a "stigma of being a college for kids who couldn't get idiot a real college." No one is proud that they go to their local community college that some will even hide it through saying they go to a satellite campus of a larger university or simply have very little school pride. Not having school pride is not the worst effect of community colleges, but it is certainly not helping the problem. Low school pride is going to directly effect morale and enrollment of community colleges. Similar to an amusement park with lame reviews, no one is going to want to go to it, but it doesn't stop certain people from still enjoying it.
President Obama giving a commencement speech at a community college would be the ultimate praise. Everyone in America would hear about it, and gain interest in community college. The current high schooler who is considering college to the middle class worker who wants to go back to school. No longer is there only a 4 year, expensive college or trying to work yourself up the work social order. Community colleges will grow in popularity and success with more people utilizing them.

sisso makhraz

Goedde discusses a very interesting and controversial issue that has become common in today’s society. Goedde talks about how some people are ashamed to go to community college. He mentions that many people feel less educated if they went to community college. Goedde believes that if President Obama came and gave a commencement address at a community college it would give the school a better sense of value and pride of the school. As Obama beautifully states in his State of the Union address that community colleges are the, “unsung hero’s of America’s education system.” This goes to show though going to whatever college does matter in some way, but at the end of the day all that matters is getting an education. Its what you do after you graduate with the knowledge you have gained that counts.
If Obama gave a speech at a community college it would not only give them pride but as well as a sense of identity as a college. One thing that caught my eye that Mr.Goedde said was, “In my classrooms I always saw the bright, bold logos and snarling mascots of those four-year schools on students’ sweatshirts and hats, but almost never did someone wear something promoting our own, dear W.C.C.” Students at community college didn’t even want to have a connection to community college, which is sad to here because my father personally went to community college and now is the owner of a successful tile and housing company, providing education, food and shelter for his family. Mr.Goedde provides many great points and it is important to break the thought of community college being a bad thing. With Obama who carry’s so much importance were to give a speech at a community college it would give the community college and most importantly the students that sense of importance in there education.

Jordan Rahurahu

Goedde believes that Obama presenting at a community college would assure students of the true value of their education, and would mean more than just hearing him speak of the value of the colleges in a speech anywhere else. If Obama were to address a crowd at the white house and talk about the significance of community colleges, it wouldn’t have very much significance since people listening to him speak would not be able to relate as clearly as people who were at a community college. It adds extra value to hear a man speak than to read what he said, hearing first person “did you hear that? Our president thinks we’re heroes!” has more meaning than writing. With previous criticism of being a lower-class way of education, said to give degrees “as universal as high school”, having Obama speak at a community college about community colleges would not only raise pride in the colleges but also value in the education offered.

Ally O'Connell

I believe that Goedde would want President Obama to speak at a community college graduation because that would show his support for community colleges. In his article he talks about how President Obama "has helped immeasurably with the one resource that has most needed a boost: school pride." I believe that if just mentioning community colleges could increase school pride then I think President Obama speaking at a commencement would greatly increase school pride as well as draw attention to community colleges. The President is a very prominent figure and he would draw lots of positive attention to community colleges. Often times community colleges do not get lots of positive attention therefore his presence at a commencement would be a great benefit to school pride and bring positive attention.

Walkenia Massiel Rosales

My own view is that community colleges haven’t earned the same respect a major institution usually gets because of the stereotypes they have. Though I concede that college might only work for some people because of the programs they have, I still maintain that colleges programs are as good as the ones a university might have. People sometimes think that because colleges are less expensive the quality of education is less as well. They think that people that attend colleges rather than universities are lazy because they do not usually pursuit the academic career people that attend universities do. Although some might object that colleges do not merit the same respect as a major institution does, I would reply that is not the place that make an institution good but the people that works hard and put all their effort in it.

Hope Bahnke

It is often said that community colleges are not credited with having the same caliber as four year university does . A number of statements made by President Barack Obama, however, have suggested that not only are community colleges great institutions, but “undervalued asset[s].”(Goedde) Following this view, Goedde finds it important that President Obama speak at a community college graduation ceremony because it would increase pride in such institutions where many students work hard, but do not wish to share with others pride in their work due to the name and status of their school. Though some may argue that President Obama himself attended not only a four year college, but an Ivy League. This may be refuted by the fact that his education, though it contributed to his success, is not relevant in making a change in the stigma that surrounds community college.In sum, then, the issue is whether President Obama’s speech would be greatly impactful or not .
I think that Obama making a speech at a community college would be very influential. It is not often that people are inspired, and Obama would be an encouragement and symbol that not only does he approve of the education given at a community college, he promotes it. Though I concede that it may be seen as a pity gift, however in his speeches before, including the talks at the White House Summit on Community Colleges and the State of the Union last year, Obama’s words have made a larger conversation in classrooms like Goedde’s. For example, Goedde writes that “When I asked them about their pride in our school, some laughed, and most looked at me quizzically.” (Goedde). In making this comment one should note that pursuing higher education is something that all people should be proud of, no matter what institution they attend. The issue is important because Goedde’s students, and all students, deserve to say that they attend community college or a four year school and know that not only are they recognized by themselves, their peers and family, but by the President of the United States as well.

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