Originally posted by Wildbob77
I've read a number of posts complaining about the educational system.
My question to you all, is how do we improve the educational system.
It's one thing to point out the flaws, it's quite another to actually look at ways to improve the status quo.
So what needs to be done?
My post in this thread gave plenty of suggestions to improve the Educational System in the United States.
1.) Do not educate to the lowest common denominator. "No Child Left Behind" ensures that our smartest and brightest will be denied an education,
while ensuring our dumbest and dullest will graduate.
2.) Do not attempt to teach all students as if they are the same. In education One-Size does *NOT*
Fit-All. Every child is different and learns
3.) Do not teach what to think but rather how to think. Teaching something that can be learned from a text-book is not teaching! That is nothing more
than recitation and if that is considered to be "teaching" then computer software could probably do it better than any teacher could! Education
should be about providing the experiential tools necessary for a child to educate themselves throughout life. Education should be teaching
to think, providing the other "R"s that are too often overlooked in our three "R"s educational system (Reading, (w)Riting,
(a)Rithmetic). These other "R"s which are equally as fundamental are Reason, Rhetoric, Research
. If you teach these skills to a child there
is nothing that they cannot learn on their own.
4.) Stop the "Cram and Purge" mentality that our educational system is based upon. Since funding is dependent upon Standardized Testing and Grades,
the emphasis of our Educational system has no longer been about instructing our children and providing them the necessary tools they will need in
order to succeed in life, but rather to make it to the next Test, Pass, and Forget. When the Educational System is about "Cram and Purge" all we do
is train our children like monkeys to be really good at preparing and passing a test while not learning a single fundamental thing. With "Cram and
Purge" we are successfully creating a workforce that can and will be replaced by machines or lower wage workers in impoverished nations.
5.) Teach the method rather than the details. The devil is in the details. Any half-wit can Google the details upon a whim. Dates, People, Places,
Tables and Equations are not teaching our children anything that they themselves couldn't already look up. Teach them instead the bigger picture so
that children can put the information they come across into it's proper context on their own. Teach them how mathematics works from a Euclidean or
Archimedean model rather than starting out with a Descartian model. The numbers and equations in Descartian Mathematics are too abstract for many
children to understand when they are lacking the primary fundamentals and logic behind what those numbers and equations represent. Teach children
*HOW* various advances in History contributed to the evolution of Civilization rather than the Who, What, Where, and When. Who, What, Where, and When
pertains to Journalism, not to learning which should be exclusively about the How.
6.) Encourage life-long learning rather than make education to be a relay race to the finish-line. A properly educated child should never stop
learning. The moment we stop learning is the moment we begin to die! For example, in my field I have to read 10 manuals a week (equivalent to
), and every 6 months my knowledge-base has become out-dated and irrelevant. If I don't continue re-educate myself I would
be permanently out of a job. Without having acquired the thirst for knowledge and learning that I did at such a young age I would be flipping
hamburgers for a living and would not be able to Innovate, contribute to my Industry, to the Work-Force, or able to help keep our Nation competitive
in the World Market.
7.) Reward thinking outside of the box. The memorization of Tables, Dates, People and Places never contributed to anything other than in a game of
Jeopardy! Being able to think, and to think abstractly in a way never thought before, is the fundamental requirement of Innovation. Necessity may be
the Mother of Invention, but without the ability to assess a need and determine a resolution to fulfill that need that has never been conceived of
before then Innovation would be unlikely to occur in the first place. Innovation is what once made the US economically strong, and if we would ever
like to be economically strong ever again we need our children to be able to Innovate by thinking outside of the box, not by winning a round on
8.) The student should always surpass the teacher. A teacher should be a mentor that passes their knowledge down to the student who then adds to that
knowledge with the knowledge they have gained through their own experience. With each generation Education should continuously exceed the previous
generation. That is the very reason we instruct our children in the first place! If the standards for Education are not significantly raised with each
generation then Education has stagnated and we begin the backwards slide into irrelevance. Education, as a necessity, must evolve or die!
9.) Tenure is the bane of Education. Does a dinosaur make for a good instructor about things that relevant to the Information Age? No! A dinosaur is
only good for teaching us about dinosaurs! Likewise, a bad teacher shouldn't be ensured a job just because of the number of years they have been a
teacher. Again, just as Education must evolve or die, so must teachers! Make the field of Education as a career far more competitive. Offer more
competitive (and sustainable) salaries and benefits to attract better teachers, but take away the guarantees of position unless they continue to be
competitively relevant to the evolution of Education.
10.) Make Education the #1 Priority in the United States. If that means we slip from having the #1 Military in the World to #18, then so be it! Our
Military will cease to be #1 anyway after one or two generations of children who are taught with the Worlds #18 in Education. A Nation is not as
strong as it's Military Force, rather it's might is as strong as the Minds of it's People. Even the Samurai in medieval Japan understood that the
strength of the body is the strength of one's mind! We need to stop being satisfied with being #18 in the World in Education and do whatever it
takes, no matter what the cost, to get back to being #1 in Education. Only then will we find certain strength, prosperity, and well-being as a
There are 10 specific suggestions.