Mike Rose's 'I Just Wanna Be Average'; essay sheds light on troubled youth within the public school system. It makes you long for the days of American pride and service. Students placed in 'tracks'; to utilize overcrowded and faulty test systems. Identity lost due to poor instruction and lack of motivation. The influx of shattered images brought forth by the 'Report of the French Commission on American Education, 1879'; reminds us of a time long ago when education was for every child, not select few. Stoic instructors molding young minds in the quest to advance America as a whole.

Civic pride and duty were influencing every aspect of American education. Both essays draw from the influence of education into the societal path into American mainstream society. Each school system is influenced by thoughts of bettering youth, but in much opposite ends of the spectrum. The French commission stated that the youth of America were offered the same curriculum in the hopes to form a united, equal society. America, as seen by the French, was a land of golden opportunities available to every child regardless of social standing. It was the basis for our country to survive.

It safeguarded our standing in the world. Mike Rose's school offered quite the opposite. It was a haven for long standing views on school being selective as to whom actually deserved the education. The only hope of the present school system is a few dedicated professionals.

They could see the errors of the future and grasp to what made the system work in the past. Focusing on actual knowledge to better society at the basic level. The present day of education still draws from the past in the aspect that a school is only as good as a system will allow. The emphasis is on education regardless of pre-set notions. Society today wants citizens to play an integral part of their children's education.

Students today bring the hopes and failures of their family into the curriculum that is driven by teachers that are uninspired. This current thought allows the system to overlook the student who yearns to get out of the lower track and excel at the same equal pace as the higher student. The days of being created equal in the school system are long gone. The society that allows children to enter as equals often has them placed in a track before actual classroom time. The French commission saw American educators as the forefathers for society. It is a much different world.

Mike Rose's essay points out specific flaws of uninterested instructors and flawed systems of placement. Thus creating boundaries the average student can never surpass. Students today are far different than those of the French commission. In 1879, America was growing to keep up with the world.

Education is the basis for any society to succeed. The thought of education today in America is to succeed for an individual basis. The overwhelming feeling of pride for America has diminished. Educational and family pride still drive America, but the school systems cater to individuals not to society.

Students are marked upon entering school as to who will succeed and who will only become menial citizens. There are many classifications. Many factors of race, creed, and financial status influence education. There are no equal grounds for a student to stand on. American pride has gone the way side of personal enrichment.

Students now are faced with the feeling of being inadequate upon entering the system. In 1879, everyone wanted to succeed. The only pre-requisite was to achieve an education. In this day and age education barely opens doors for the 'average'; person. The emphasis should be based on equal opportunities for every student. In this day and age educators are faced with financial constraints and overcrowding.

Constant one-up man ship of school systems place these perimeter's on both educator's and students. The equal school system of 1879 is no longer valid. Monetary issues factor into everything a school becomes. A quality education is place upon those who have money and not on the unfortunate who do not. Equality is a nice concept, but not one of reality.

Instructors are underpaid and under appreciated. Both factors influence the degree of drive that is to be passed onto the students. America in 1879 admired the educator, and some odd 100 years later, scorn the very notion. Dedicated educators in this day and age are few and hard to find. The 'average'; educator is a direct result of America's flawed school system. Both essays draw on the point of American education.

Both have distinct classification. Both consider the student a part of society. The problem is that neither of them addresses the actual individual. Individuality is the cornerstone of American society. Cookie cutter molds are what the education systems of both are driven to achieve. The similarity of each essay states that education is something for America.

Education should not be for the purpose of individuality, but to keep everyone in the designated place assigned to him or her. 'Report of the French Commission on American Education, 1879'; . ReReading America. 1998. Pages 159-163.

'I Just Wanna be Average'; . Mike Rose. ReReading America. 1998.

Pages 174-185.