Near Final Draft- Suggestions, Edits-- Please

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
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hallbd16
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Near Final Draft- Suggestions, Edits-- Please

Postby hallbd16 » Mon Dec 17, 2012 10:31 pm

Looking for grammar edits, comments, possible text additions (I have 3 lines of unused space on the second page. Where would you add clarification and/or detail to if you had three more lines of text to add?)

On the eve of the 2010 school year, six of 120 teachers stood uncomfortably as the rest sat underneath the maroon ‘STRIVE,’ banner in the school cafeteria: “If our staff represents our communities, those standing represent those who will attend a four-year university. We are charged with relegating that to the notes of history.” The words of my boss, the CEO of the highest performing Colorado charter network, signaled the start of my fight against the achievement gap. The next two years filled a spectrum of emotions and shaped one way I want to impact education reform: by championing the values of accountability and high-expectations.

The first semester was ideal. I was a founding math teacher at a school backed by a renowned charter network. Our approach utilized parallel systems of expectations and support. My administration set my classroom target for two years of academic growth just as I helped students establish their “big goal” of an 85% average on all assessments. The academic supports added to these expectations helped my students grow 1.6 academic years that first semester.

The following semester imparted on me the difficulties of maintaining success. As February passed, my 8th period class performance trajectory fell behind set benchmarks. As an advocate of the ideal that teachers are 100% accountable for the performance of their students, I nervously sought the assistance of the principal. Firm but cooperative, he agreed the current trajectory of the 8th period class did not meet network standards, helped me establish a plan of action, and noted that failure would result in employment termination. My previous successes and positive evaluations from the first semester did not guarantee job security.

Fortunately for Juan, Ariel, and the rest of 8th period, we were able to right the ship. College leadership training, emphasizing case study analysis, had prepared me to focus on the root causes and their interplay in order to address shortcomings. Among numerous changes, I transitioned away from the network-wide teacher-centric methodology —teacher lectures and student listens— and empowered students to control their own learning. Visitors rarely found me talking in class. Instead they would see students leading the warm up, captains assigning tasks for group projects, or the “college committees” judging what team produced the best college-bound work.

The exhaustion and stress faded as I emerged from the experience, what remained was a state of perplexity. The entire process defied traditional educational norms: from the administration accepting a rapid overhaul of the classroom pedagogy to my boss’s willingness to fire a young teacher performing well above industry standards. Though in time, I accepted the process as positive. It made me a better teacher, inspired me to become a mentor for other incoming teachers, and drove pedagogical changes at my school; the bottom line was that it benefited the students. This transformation represents how my teaching experiences molded my strong beliefs about the direction of education and the possibilities for success.

My desire to attend law school next year is anchored in my quest to realize my vision for American education reform. There are countless legal mechanisms available to affect change. I saw firsthand as a college intern at the Boulder County Courthouse how our legal system influences truancy, school safety, child welfare, and special education rights. Laws such as “No Child Left Behind,” and executive acts such as “Race to the Top,” showcase the reform debate around teacher accountability. The legal interpretation and enforcement of such initiatives will shape educational policy. The same is true of the 2012 Chicago Teachers Strike negotiations around labor accountability. I can also imagine furthering the reform movement by pressuring government action through litigation, such as in “Lobato vs. Colorado,” where the state was sued for not providing adequate resources. The status quo already has a legal establishment, I am here to fight for of transformative change that relegates educational inequality to the notes of history.

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hallbd16
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Re: Near Final Draft- Suggestions, Edits-- Please

Postby hallbd16 » Tue Dec 18, 2012 10:08 am

Bump- To anyone reading, I hope you have time to give me some comments (and thank you for reading to this point)

B90
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Re: Near Final Draft- Suggestions, Edits-- Please

Postby B90 » Tue Dec 18, 2012 11:45 pm

Contrary to popular, aspie-based belief, the page limit is not a goal to be reached. It is a LIMIT, meaning you shouldn't exceed it, not a requirement. Unless you are writing a Yale 250, you should embrace, not fear, the idea of leaving an "extra" three lines. It shows a mature use of restraint.
Many 1Ls find legal research and writing to be their most difficult class because legal writing is so different from what most people are used to. There is a famous quote (I forget who from) that I will paraphrase, "I am sorry this letter is so long; if I had time it would be shorter."
I do see a few minor punctuation typos. I would be happy to edit for punctuation tomorrow; right now I am not near my computer (on my ipad), so it is difficult.

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hallbd16
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Re: Near Final Draft- Suggestions, Edits-- Please

Postby hallbd16 » Wed Dec 19, 2012 5:20 am

B90 wrote:Contrary to popular, aspie-based belief, the page limit is not a goal to be reached. It is a LIMIT, meaning you shouldn't exceed it, not a requirement. Unless you are writing a Yale 250, you should embrace, not fear, the idea of leaving an "extra" three lines. It shows a mature use of restraint.
Many 1Ls find legal research and writing to be their most difficult class because legal writing is so different from what most people are used to. There is a famous quote (I forget who from) that I will paraphrase, "I am sorry this letter is so long; if I had time it would be shorter."
I do see a few minor punctuation typos. I would be happy to edit for punctuation tomorrow; right now I am not near my computer (on my ipad), so it is difficult.


Thanks for the feedback. I have been thinking the same thing. It started out as 3 plus pages before I began the editing and revision process. Now it is under two. I agree, the more concise the better, I just wanted to people to feel free to explore in a multitude of ways, in case anyone notices content issues.

I would absolutely appreciate a gramatical edit. Thanks!

B90
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Re: Near Final Draft- Suggestions, Edits-- Please

Postby B90 » Wed Dec 19, 2012 11:57 am

Will do. Also, my PS was 1.5 pages. It was very well received.
I am off to Starbucks for caffeine, and then I will devote a solid chunk of time to editing. I know there are a lot of people trying to send apps this week. I will do my best to help.

B90
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Re: Near Final Draft- Suggestions, Edits-- Please

Postby B90 » Wed Dec 19, 2012 3:02 pm

hallbd16 wrote:Looking for grammar edits, comments, possible text additions (I have 3 lines of unused space on the second page. Where would you add clarification and/or detail to if you had three more lines of text to add?)

On the eve of the 2010 school year, six of 120 teachers stood uncomfortably as the rest sat underneath the maroon ‘STRIVE, no comma here ’ banner in the school cafeteria: This should be a period, not a colon “If our staff represents our communities, those standing represent those who will attend a four-year university. We are charged with relegating that to the notes of history.” The words of my boss, the CEO of the highest performing Colorado charter network, signaled the start of my fight against the achievement gap. The next two years filled a spectrum of emotions and shaped one way I want to impact education reform: by championing the values of accountability and high-expectations.

The first semester was ideal. I was a founding math teacher what does this mean? at a school backed by a renowned charter network. Our approach utilized parallel systems of expectations and support. My administration set my classroom target for two years of academic growth just as I helped students establish their “big goal” of an 85% average on all assessments. The academic supports added to these expectations helped my students grow 1.6 academic years that first semester.

The following semester imparted on me I find this phrase awkward the difficulties of maintaining success. As February passed, my 8th period class should there be an apostrophe here? performance trajectory fell behind set benchmarks. As an advocate of the ideal that teachers are 100% accountable for the performance of their students, I nervously sought the assistance of the principal. Firm but cooperative, he agreed the current trajectory of the 8th period class did not meet network standards, helped me establish a plan of action, and noted that failure would result in employment termination. My previous successes and positive evaluations from the first semester did not guarantee job security.

Fortunately for Juan, Ariel, and the rest of 8th period, we were able to right the ship. My College leadership training, which emphasized emphasizing case study analysis, had prepared me to focus on the root causes and their interplay in order to address shortcomings. Among numerous changes, I transitioned away from the network-wide teacher-centric methodology add the word of here, and get rid of both dashes—teacher lectures and student listens and empowered students to control their own learning. Visitors rarely found me talking in class. Instead they would see students leading the warm up, captains assigning tasks for group projects, or the “college committees” judging what team produced the best college-bound work.

The exhaustion and stress faded as I emerged from the experience, what remained was a state of perplexity. The entire process defied traditional educational norms: this should be a semicolon from the administration accepting a rapid overhaul of the classroom pedagogy to my boss’s willingness to fire a young teacher performing well above industry standards. Though delete this word in time, I accepted the process as positive. It made me a better teacher, inspired me to become a mentor for other incoming teachers, and drove pedagogical changes at my school; the bottom line was that it benefited the students. This transformation represents how my teaching experiences molded my strong beliefs about the direction of education and the possibilities for success.

My desire to attend law school next year is anchored in my quest to realize my vision for American education reform. There are countless legal mechanisms available to affect change. I saw firsthand as a college intern at the Boulder County Courthouse how our legal system influences truancy, school safety, child welfare, and special education rights. Laws programs? It's not really a law such as “No Child Left Behind, remove this comma” and executive acts such as “Race to the Top and remove this one,” showcase the reform debate around teacher accountability. The legal interpretation and enforcement of such initiatives will shape educational policy. The same is true of the 2012 Chicago Teachers add an apostrophe here Strike negotiations around labor accountability. I can also imagine furthering the reform movement by pressuring government action through litigation, such as in “Lobato vs. Colorado,” I think cases are supposed to be in italics, not quotes; definitely look this up where the state was sued for not providing adequate resources. The status quo already has a legal establishment, this should be a semicolon I am here to fight for of transformative change that relegates educational inequality to the notes of history.


My edits are in red. Feel free to send me the revision, and I will check it again, in case I missed anything.

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hallbd16
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Re: Near Final Draft- Suggestions, Edits-- Please

Postby hallbd16 » Thu Dec 20, 2012 3:14 am

Thanks so much for spending time on the gramatical edits. Good points. I responded to a couple comments below in blue. Would appreciate your thoughts around that.

Also, if you ever want some assistance in any way, let me know what I can do to repay the favor.

B90 wrote:
hallbd16 wrote:Looking for grammar edits, comments, possible text additions (I have 3 lines of unused space on the second page. Where would you add clarification and/or detail to if you had three more lines of text to add?)

On the eve of the 2010 school year, six of 120 teachers stood uncomfortably as the rest sat underneath the maroon ‘STRIVE, no comma here ’ banner in the school cafeteria: This should be a period, not a colon A colon is acceptable because it introduces the setting where the quote occurs. For that reason, it seems a superior use of punctuation, thoughts?“If our staff represents our communities, those standing represent those who will attend a four-year university. We are charged with relegating that to the notes of history.” The words of my boss, the CEO of the highest performing Colorado charter network, signaled the start of my fight against the achievement gap. The next two years filled a spectrum of emotions and shaped one way I want to impact education reform: by championing the values of accountability and high-expectations.

The first semester was ideal. I was a founding math teacher what does this mean? at a school backed by a renowned charter network. Our approach utilized parallel systems of expectations and support. My administration set my classroom target for two years of academic growth just as I helped students establish their “big goal” of an 85% average on all assessments. The academic supports added to these expectations helped my students grow 1.6 academic years that first semester.

The following semester imparted on me I find this phrase awkward the difficulties of maintaining success. As February passed, my 8th period class should there be an apostrophe here? performance trajectory fell behind set benchmarks. As an advocate of the ideal that teachers are 100% accountable for the performance of their students, I nervously sought the assistance of the principal. Firm but cooperative, he agreed the current trajectory of the 8th period class did not meet network standards, helped me establish a plan of action, and noted that failure would result in employment termination. My previous successes and positive evaluations from the first semester did not guarantee job security.

Fortunately for Juan, Ariel, and the rest of 8th period, we were able to right the ship. My College leadership training, which emphasized emphasizing case study analysis, had prepared me to focus on the root causes and their interplay in order to address shortcomings. Among numerous changes, I transitioned away from the network-wide teacher-centric methodology add the word of here, and get rid of both dashesWhy not use a dash? It meets the interjection requirement and adds a touch of informality to this piece, which is otherwise quite formal. Thoughts?—teacher lectures and student listens and empowered students to control their own learning. Visitors rarely found me talking in class. Instead they would see students leading the warm up, captains assigning tasks for group projects, or the “college committees” judging what team produced the best college-bound work.

The exhaustion and stress faded as I emerged from the experience, what remained was a state of perplexity. The entire process defied traditional educational norms: this should be a semicolon from the administration accepting a rapid overhaul of the classroom pedagogy to my boss’s willingness to fire a young teacher performing well above industry standards. Though delete this word in time, I accepted the process as positive. It made me a better teacher, inspired me to become a mentor for other incoming teachers, and drove pedagogical changes at my school; the bottom line was that it benefited the students. This transformation represents how my teaching experiences molded my strong beliefs about the direction of education and the possibilities for success.

My desire to attend law school next year is anchored in my quest to realize my vision for American education reform. There are countless legal mechanisms available to affect change. I saw firsthand as a college intern at the Boulder County Courthouse how our legal system influences truancy, school safety, child welfare, and special education rights. Laws programs? It's not really a law such as “No Child Left Behind, remove this comma” and executive acts such as “Race to the Top and remove this one,” showcase the reform debate around teacher accountability. The legal interpretation and enforcement of such initiatives will shape educational policy. The same is true of the 2012 Chicago Teachers add an apostrophe here Strike negotiations around labor accountability. I can also imagine furthering the reform movement by pressuring government action through litigation, such as in “Lobato vs. Colorado,” I think cases are supposed to be in italics, not quotes; definitely look this up where the state was sued for not providing adequate resources. The status quo already has a legal establishment, this should be a semicolon I am here to fight for of transformative change that relegates educational inequality to the notes of history.


My edits are in red. Feel free to send me the revision, and I will check it again, in case I missed anything.

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TripTrip
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Re: Near Final Draft- Suggestions, Edits-- Please

Postby TripTrip » Thu Dec 20, 2012 5:12 am

On the eve of the 2010 school year, six of 120 teachers stood uncomfortably as the rest sat underneath the maroon ‘STRIVE, no comma here ’ banner in the school cafeteria: This should be a period, not a colon A colon is acceptable because it introduces the setting where the quote occurs. For that reason, it seems a superior use of punctuation, thoughts?“If our staff represents our communities, those standing represent those who will attend a four-year university. We are charged with relegating that to the notes of history.” The words of my boss, the CEO of the highest performing Colorado charter network, signaled the start of my fight against the achievement gap. The next two years filled a spectrum of emotions and shaped one way I want to impact education reform: by championing the values of accountability and high-expectations.
Definitely switch to a period. It breaks up the sentence and makes a lot more sense.


Fortunately for Juan, Ariel, and the rest of 8th period, we were able to right the ship. My College leadership training, which emphasized emphasizing case study analysis, had prepared me to focus on the root causes and their interplay in order to address shortcomings. Among numerous changes, I transitioned away from the network-wide teacher-centric methodology add the word of here, and get rid of both dashesWhy not use a dash? It meets the interjection requirement and adds a touch of informality to this piece, which is otherwise quite formal. Thoughts?—teacher lectures and student listens and empowered students to control their own learning. Visitors rarely found me talking in class. Instead they would see students leading the warm up, captains assigning tasks for group projects, or the “college committees” judging what team produced the best college-bound work.

I don't think B90 has the correct answer here, but you definitely need to lose those dashes. They don't make much sense on the first or second read-through, and the fact that they're right after some other dashes doesn't help.

B90
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Re: Near Final Draft- Suggestions, Edits-- Please

Postby B90 » Thu Dec 20, 2012 10:31 am

My reasoning behind using a period instead of the colon was to break the sentence into two sentences. I thought the sentence was too long and interrupted the flow of the piece. Personally, I like to keep sentences at a similar length because I think it flows better.
I'm sorry I wasn't clear. I made it sound like you had a punctuation error; that is not the case. This is just my opinion. You should seek others. As for the dashes, I agree with the above poster...and you, for that matter. They are informal. I don't understand that break from the tone of your piece.

Neither of these things will cause a law school to accept or reject you!!!
They are minor, and they are matters of opinion.
You will make an excellent attorney. :mrgreen: (Remember, that is why we are all putting ourselves through this torture)

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hallbd16
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Re: Near Final Draft- Suggestions, Edits-- Please

Postby hallbd16 » Thu Dec 20, 2012 10:42 am

I agree, some of the most nuanced details are matter of style, but you said it, that is what makes the craft.

Thanks both on the follow up thoughts. I have come to agree with the elimination of the colon and will have to ponder a bit more on the dashes. Either way, lots of thanks for taking a look and discussing it.

B90
Posts: 264
Joined: Wed Sep 26, 2012 3:08 pm

Re: Near Final Draft- Suggestions, Edits-- Please

Postby B90 » Thu Dec 20, 2012 10:52 am

hallbd16 wrote:I agree, some of the most nuanced details are matter of style, but you said it, that is what makes the craft.

Thanks both on the follow up thoughts. I have come to agree with the elimination of the colon and will have to ponder a bit more on the dashes. Either way, lots of thanks for taking a look and discussing it.


You're welcome. I would NOT want to attend the school that rejected someone over their use of dashes. :roll:

Now, I demand that you get yourself to a bar at your earliest possible convenience and partake of the drink(s) of your choice (assuming you are over 21 and not an alcoholic, of course) !




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