What is school for? A simple question that has a wide range of answers that involves money, time, and exploration.
Is school still a place for learning not memorizing? Is it a place of developing great ideas? Is it a place to pasteurize out dangerous ideas? Is it still a place of free speech?
Do schools develop creativity and critical thinking?
Does it help the student find a purpose and passion in life?
Are schools too focused on grades rather than discovery and personal growth?
Are schools indoctrinating its students?
Are schools making students average instead of being extraordinary? Also, are schools teaching kids how to handle stress? And other forms of deadly mental illnesses?
What is school for?
Schools become accessible and compulsory during the start of the industrial age. Industrialists built public schools because they need workers for their factories.
That’s why you could notice that the name of our current education system is "factory model." A model which won't work in the 21st century.
The harsh reality is our technology might have surpassed our process of education. 20 years ago when we need knowledge or information, it would take a lot of our time to get the answer.
Today, once you get connected to the internet, you'll get the information you want with the use of Google.
So, if we can get the knowledge that we need by using the internet. Then, why are schools still giving us too many standardized tests? Even though we already know that standardized tests are actually bogus. It is "bogus" because these tests base our intelligence on what our scores are. Here's a real-life example, let’s say students take a quiz about science or mathematics, but they aren’t good at it. Once they fail to reach the specific score, does it mean that they aren’t learning? Or they are not passionate about the particular subject?
What schools need to do for them to test the intelligence and knowledge of their students is:
Schools need to put students in real-world situations. Not by letting students memorize what’s in the textbook. Also, measuring their IQ which is illegal by the way. (There’s even a conspiracy that says schools makes us weaker.)
If schools care about the future of their students, then why don’t they encourage them to write and read books? Reading and writing can help us improve our critical thinking.
Moreover, it can help us overcome our battles in life. I still can't believe that schools don't encourage their students to read and write. I know that the grades are important in the school system but look at the people who left a “mark” in this world. From scientists, philosophers, entrepreneurs, authors, and scholars. They love to read and write.
If schools want their students to be future leaders, they should encourage them to read and write.
Schools should be a place of debate, free speech, learning, exchanging and building ideas. Unfortunately, this changed over the past few years. Today, schools are canceling speakers who don’t share the same views as them. Schools are force-feeding kids about political correctness, teaching them to become activists.
* I've been thinking about including this topic for hours already because I don’t want issues on my blog. However, this is happening right now in schools. Also, it is an issue that needs attention.
In November 2017, Lindsay Shepherd a Canadian graduate student and teaching assistant at Wilfrid Laurier University got into a controversy. That got the attention of mainstream media.
During her communications class, she showed a clip to her students of University of Toronto professors debating about gender pronouns. Unfortunately, the school admins didn’t like what Ms.Shepherd did during her class. The administrators called in Ms. Shepherd for a disciplinary meeting about the incident.
The university admins told Lindsay Shepherd that they received complaints about what she showed. However, they don’t even want to say who or how many complained about her. During the meeting, Ms. Shepherd secretly recorded the session and released it to the media. This audio places the university in a tough spot and received criticism from all over the world.
As the investigation goes on, they found out that there were no formal complaints. In fact, the meeting shouldn’t have happened at all.
So why did I include this? Well, schools should be a place of free speech. How can we improve as an individual or as a society if we aren’t open to discussions and debates?
At the end of the day, schools are very profitable businesses. So we need to choose what school are we going to enter.
Although there are alternatives like Massive open online course(MOOC), homeschooling and even self-education which is a cheaper option. However, choosing this option requires you to be more active in the real world.
In the post-industrial age, your diploma or resume won’t get you a job. If you don’t have the skills, creativity, and critical thinking. Keep in mind that if we are a fully automated society in the next few years, you will be irrelevant if you don’t have these qualities.
Are you thinking of dropping out? Do not do it if you don’t have a purpose and if you are unable to handle your responsibilities. I know that you’re thinking why did dropouts become successful. It’s because they are living a purpose driven life.
What about success? What does school have to do with it? We all aim for different goals. But, why is it that school forces us that success only has a single definition? A question that you and I have different answers.
What is school for?