Last October, a Federal judge ordered that the FDNY academy be easier so more people could pass. Although this happened several months ago, I hadn’t seen the headline until recently.
The reasoning for the change in difficulty was pretty logical. I read through the arguments and they weren’t completely bogus. At the midway point of the 18-week training class, 15% of students had dropped out. There were stats. There was support. There was valid reasoning about the history of fire fighting and how things that were requirements 100 years ago, are now irrelevant due to new technology. Heck, I was a teacher for years and I know all about the bell curve. I sure appreciated teachers throwing me a bone back in high school. I’ve always been horrible at math and I can remember our trig teacher giving us a 30 point curve because so many students failed the final exam.
But, I have a problem with this “let’s make it easier” mentality.
My third year teaching, I switched to a school that I found out was more “progressive” than most. After signing my contract, I learned that I was supposed to pass all kids that I taught. I was told that if one student could spell 20 spelling words correctly and the other student could only spell 5, both students would get A’s. I would simply put an asterisk at the bottom of the test with only 5 correct and say “*this test was graded on an alternative grading scale.”
Scouts honor, that’s true.
This headline about the fire fighting situation brought me right back to that weird time teaching at that weird school. Rather than challenging people to be the best and the brightest, we are lowering the bar in every field in the name of equality. This is terrible! Each and every field should be competitive and require hard work! What if we saw this sort of thing creeping into the medical field? Could you imagine – reading a headline about medical school getting easier?
I want the doctors who might be cutting me open to be a nerd geniuses who worked their butts off!
I wonder how many of these headlines we miss. You can tell that this entitlement culture is seeping into every field by just going anywhere. When I go to restaurants or stores, I’m always surprised when someone is doing their job well, because hard workers have become so hard to come by! Why work hard when you can get anything and everywhere for free, right?
What do you think about this whole make-it-easy-so-anyone-can-pass mentality?