Mark Twain once said “I have never let my schooling interfere with my education.”
My oldest, Finn is a Junior in highschool this year. Yea, the worst year in highschool. You have to do all your normal school work AND buff up the extra curricular activities AND do well on the SAT test AND figure out what colleges to apply to. The pressure is intense. And the only thing that seems to matter in Junior year are the results. Grades. Test Scores. College acceptance letters. The focus is 100% on Outcomes. No process. No creativity. No talk about the purpose or meaning behind all these outcomes. No deviation from the objective measures of “success” as defined by our western academic system.
But does this model of education produce the best possible humans? Does it work for the wide variety of personality types out there? Where does creative thinking come in? America prides itself on innovation. But the educational system doesn’t teach innovation. By definition, any standardized system kills the outliers. Yet the outliers is where the creativity and innovation comes from.
Leave it to a Brit (lovers of organization, conformity, empires) to ask the right question. Are we teaching the skills we really want in our kids? Or just stamping degrees on them?
Also published on Medium.