Other Alternate Realities


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Firstly, it is my opinion that education is the key to solving most problems in the world. That having been said, the real question is: What form does this education take?

We have all heard the phrases: “Educated Fool” and “Common Sense” when referring to the issue of intelligence. Sadly, these implicit criticisms have all too much basis in reality. There are simply too many reasons for this.

The first reason is that the education system is damaged and out of control. Today most people can see that our educational system has failed miserably. Our placement at or near the bottom of so-called developed countries cannot be ignored. However, the solutions are much too political to be addressed.

One attempt to do this was done recently and the woman who worked to solve the problem left when her boss was replaced. Even though political leaders give her lip-service in praising her efforts and successes, the simple truth is that most people were angry with her because she did what was necessary.

It is all too easy, and appropriate, to point to teachers unions and the DEA as being part of the problem. Eliminating both of these would help but would not solve the problems completely. Much of the problem can be laid directly at the feet of teachers and administrators. The rest of the fault falls with people who support failed social programs intended to bring equality between people of different races.

The net result of these progressive programs has been the lowering of standards to the LCD (Lowest Common Denominator). At this point many of you will be calling me a racist. Actually, I did get in trouble in High School for expressing exactly the opposite point of view and standing up against the school. Eventually, they got over it and I was able to go back to school. That being the case, why do I take this position?

My problem with nearly every social program has not been its intent but its implementation.

Another, perhaps more insidious, reason for the failure of the educational system is that it is incestuous. Most of my teachers and professors were from the academic world only. Once in a while I would get someone who had actually held a job outside of academia. These individuals were outstanding teachers as they really knew what they were teaching.

One way to fix that can be illustrated by what was done in North Carolina. The PBS station ran a special called “Eating the Scorpion”. It was about a group of teachers who went to China to learn about their culture and history. What they brought back was not only the experience but the real understanding of what they were teaching. Their enthusiasm was translated into being to relate their own experiences to their students in such a way as to transfer their knowledge to these students. The students themselves were totally engaged in learning process.

If you want to have truly qualified teachers, you cannot depend upon degrees alone; you must have teachers and professors who work outside academia. I recommend at least two years of “real-world” experience.

Of course, this will never fly with teachers unions so you may as well forget it.

This page was last modified:      Saturday, January 15, 2011 at 12:49:01 AM