A thought came to me this morning about how society might design education to raise the success of children, focus their education and training towards their aptitudes, and prepare them for a life doing what they do best at the highest level possible.
The purpose of general education is not to prepare someone to fill a function in life but rather so all people can do the basic skills of reading, writing, and math. Things like speaking properly and learning about the natural world through the sciences, and basic human physical construction and care have also been a part of this traditional curriculum.
At the very minimum, no one should leave school until they are literate and can do basic math. However, the worldwide rate of illiteracy is alarming.
There are many problems with public education. One of them is the number of distractions that today’s children are influenced by. First of all, the main distraction in school are the other students. From Kindergarten on children are thrown together and the circus begins. The social part of education is important for sure, however when it comes to learning something, it is a ridiculous idea to assume you can put 30 kids in one classroom and expect them all to do equally well.
Training in education
The training children get in education is based upon the idea that children know what they want to be when they grow up. It is like asking a 13 year old to predict the future. Most don’t know.
Instead of leaving it up for the students to figure it out on their own, wouldn’t it be better to test, do interviews, and place students with various tutors to determine what they are good at and then assign the classes designed to teach to their strengths?
Right now students are asked to plan their own electives. Determine if they are college bound or if they want to enter the work force immediately.
The concept of a required civil service or military duty for high school graduates for the right students would be a great idea for many students so they can be constructive members of society right out of high school.
The hardest thing to do in life is to start something. Starting life coming out of high school is a huge challenge for everyone.
Education now and in the future needs to be tailor made to each student so that they enter life knowing what they are supposed and expected to do and to earn a living wage immediately.
I believe that career counseling should begin in the 8th Grade and should continue throughout high school. The wages and salaries of occupation should be presented so that students begin to get a realistic view of their future and so they can see the connection between making good grades and future income.
Education in my day taught no goals. It just assumed that the student or their parents knew what they wanted to do. In fact, many schools don’t even know who their students are, much less know what they are good at.
The truth is that the majority of students in schools come from families who are very bad examples of how to create a successful life. If your parents are challenged, what chance do their children have? Unless that kid is really with it, the kid becomes a copy of their parent.
On one hand, society treats minors as if they are completely powerless. On the other hand, minors are expected to get it without ever being taught “it”.
I dare say the reason why students succeed is because they know what they are doing it for. Most students are taught to be against school, against studying, and against testing, when in fact, they should be embracing them.
How differently would any student do, if they only took classes they had a high aptitude for? How much better would students perform if they all didn’t pass a class until they had mastered it?
What are we teaching students if getting a C is still passing? The only grade ever given should be an A, because anything less is a failure of the entire education and the student combined.
I believe education should be focusing on children’s aptitudes and talents, geared towards preparing them in the career direction of those aptitudes.
The world going forward will require an enormous amount of technical skill and knowledge. These should be focused on in schools, but also education needs to optimize the talents in other areas as well.
Having students floundering through school is no longer ethical. Depriving students of financial education is fatal in a free market capitalistic society.