I admit it. I am a little bit weird, even awkward at times. I am also friendly, kind, and I don’t let my shortcomings get the better of me. At least, I no longer do. Aging has afforded me at least one luxury, the ability to reflect on my life and see where things went wrong. I cannot change it, but I can learn from it and hopefully encourage others to do the same.
What does all this have to do with education? Nothing, and everything.
I am not blaming anyone, but I have come to realize that some things did have an impact on my life. Things I often had no control over. If I had made more informed decisions and had better support, things might have turned out different for me.
A lack of proper education is at the top of that list.
I somehow doubt that learning to knit in Mrs.Davis’s senior class was of any real use to me. This was taking place while the “boys” were learning valuable skills and trades like auto mechanics, I might add. I did not want to partake in the only work-related program being offered to the girls – secretarial studies – so I chose general sciences instead. This included subjects like Math, History, and Geography. It was the 70’s and things like feminism and socialism had not really made an impact. Honestly, I would have gotten more use out of reading the fundamentals of water damage and repair since that same year, my college dorm room flooded.
Is our education failing our youth? I think so. And, it has been for years.
In my opinion, Education is highly overrated. Teachers are not provided with the right materials to handle behavioral issues, and they do not have enough flexibility in the course requirements to allow for creative freedom.
Take me for example, I assumed journalism school was not the right career choice for me because I did not excel in English. My grades all throughout high school were average at best. It was not until I entered college when my professors began commenting on my writing abilities that I ever dreamed I could be a writer. How could I have missed that?
One day it hit me.
I was not good at writing stories about topics that I had little interest in. I am the kind of person who needs to develop story ideas on my own. Writing is an art. It either flows or it doesn’t. In high school, I was required to write stories based on topics chosen by someone else. In some ways, I suppose my writing reflected my true feelings on the subject.
The fact of the matter is, a great deal of the material provided from educators is inherently biased because it has a desired or expected outcome.
For someone as creative as I am this concept is foreign to me. I have to dissect, rearrange and debate everything before I can accept any conclusions. I cannot blame teachers, they are given a curriculum to follow. A curriculum that was likely drafted back in the early 20’s or 30’s.
It is time for the government to change the public education system to include more realistic and useful subjects for our youth. Don’t get me wrong, history and geography are important subjects. Career choices should be left up to each individual and not forced onto students who have little or no interest in them. How much knowledge do we really retain about things we have no interest in pursuing?
I think it makes a lot more sense to teach a variety of subjects and then allow students to develop on areas they want to explore before entering college. Does a geography major really need to know the philosophical nuances of a Shakespeare sonnet?
The western concept of education as we know it was developed a very long time ago. Maybe it’s time we created a system more in line with our world today. The fact of the matter is, almost anyone can learn anything they want in a matter of minutes by doing a search on Google. Oddly, what most millennials cannot do are the ordinary everyday things like making doctor’s appointments and doing their taxes.