Seth Godin on how schools teach kids to aim low and wait for instructions.
This is a very thought provoking video. Godin says the original purpose of public education as envisioned by Andrew Carnegie, Woodrow Wilson and others was to train people to become compliant factory workers and to teach kids that the best way to fit in and feel good is to buy stuff--and that is what we are still doing today. While we've built an economy on the factory worker, we under value and even discourage creativity, innovation and asking questions.
His main premise is that we can't test our way out of this situation. Rather, we must essay, sketch or debate our way out of it.
He goes on to say that college is an even bigger scam than public school and that the application process is a joke. My son will be entering his senior year in high school in the fall and we have been visiting campuses in our area. This and the fact that I teach at a college bring this discussion close to home.
Throughout Derek's academic career, I have downplayed test scores and promoted deep thinking, questioning, and creativity. Yet, now that it's time to take AP tests, the SAT, and pass state standards tests, I hear myself encouraging him to do well or he won't get into the college of his choice. Godin states that it is this type of paranoia of middle and upper class parents that keeps public schools churning out automatons. He goes on to say we should not be encouraging kids to do the types of things that get them into Harvard, but instead to think about what is the best way to invest that $150,000.
However, we still live in a world in which where you go to college and having a college degree are still important. Maybe that will change, but right now, it still matters. But, so do parents and educators. We have the power to change the conversation. The question is how... What do you think?