Wednesday, February 6, 2008

I just can't help it!

I almost feel guilty.
But not quite.

One of the Basic English students came in today and I must admit that I more or less hid and let my project specialist deal with him.
But his question was the same one he's asked me just about once a week for the past three months.

Today I found out that my project specialist and I aren't the only ones who've had to patiently give him the same answer to the same question on a weekly basis. It's also been happening in our registration office. Same student, same question, same answers.

The problem is that he doesn't like the answer.

You see, he wants to enter the College -- go into credit coursework -- but his test scores don't permit it. We're not the ones stopping him. The final tests we give in the highest level in our program (Basic English 5) are scored by the same people who score the (identical) tests given in Admissions.

Unfortunately, he just hasn't yet achieved the level of skill he needs to move forward. He says he's trying, and I think he is making an effort.

Part of the problem is that he's a little over 70 years old; it's harder to gain basic literacy skills at this age. On that level, he's done incredibly well to move as far as he has in the time since he began.

Unfortunately, the other part of the problem is his belief that he's more skilled than he is, and it's very hard to get him to understand otherwise.

I am normally a pretty patient woman, but there comes a point when I just want to say, "You're not listening to me!"


Apparently I need to work on lessons in patience.