Why Our Education System is Flawed
I am an 11 grade student who goes to a huge public school that holds 3000 students. I have a 3.0 gpa, and pretty soon I'll be graduating. You might call me accomplished, and in a way, I am, but not in the way you think. 11+ years of pouring over textbooks and being lined up to be judged in front of my peers has not made me more intelligent. Instead of focusing on developing students’ innovation skills and motivation to succeed, they quickly and frantically fill us up with knowledge.
The teachers behave like sergeants, and I want to learn what I want to know, but they just want you to look at paper and learn it for the exam. This being the situation, most are extremely unaware and careless of the mental health of their students. To them, we all lead normal lives, and therefore shouldn't have any reason as to why we don't do our homework or come to class(Regarding, of course, those students who have VALID excuses). I can tell you that that I knew about 10 kids who wanted to take their lives. I can tell you that the counselors are never in their offices, and that the administrators could care less if you walked on by. I can tell you how when I was taking a test in Chemistry, a girl in front of me had her notes out on her desk, and I was asked to prove that my answer was mine, and that I wasn't just looking at them to cheat. I precisely asked her to prove that I was cheating, but she insisted to take away points for that particular question. I wasn't cheating, but because someone coincidentally had their notes out in front of me, I was automatically cheating.
I don’t claim to be an expert in education, I am still a student who is still growing and learning everyday, and I speak for myself. I believe that students should have a voice in the education system today, because mainly they are the ones who are being educated. We learn that being “good” betokens sitting still and nodding yes, while being “bad” betokens challenging the status quo and endeavoring to do things differently.
- Thomas Edison’s teacher told him he was “too stupid to learn anything.”
- Albert Einstein did not speak until he was 4 and did not read until he was 7. One of his teachers described him as being “mentally slow, unsociable, and drift forever in foolish dreams.”
- Beethoven handled the violin awkwardly and preferred playing his own compositions instead of improving his technique. His teacher called him “hopeless as a composer.”
I learned to live in a rotten environment, and my classmates ridiculed me because I was different and worst of all, I had teachers that told me to stop dreaming and live in the real world. So what did I learn at school? I learned to stop questioning, to go with the flow, and that there is only one right answer to each question: just circle the correct bubble and I’ll get an A. The “whys” I have always wanted to ask are never on the test, and they are omitted from the curriculum. How do we expect students to be creative if we give them the outline, the title, the structure of their “free, creative writing assignment” and then give students model answers to memorize. We genuinely give them everything but liberation to express their thoughts. I have lost points on my prompts because I was “writing my opinion”. Schools are judged by how they perform on standardized tests, and as a result, instead of focusing on areas that could actually be helpful, time, money and resources are spent on actions to improve standardized test scores. In the 21st century the world demands students who can think creatively and critically. As technology develops, we will have robots to do all the basic work for us. Ironically though, it is our mission to ensure that the next generation will be full of inventors, musicians, painters, mathematicians who will, in turn, bring humanity to a whole other level.
Mistakes are viewed as failure in these hallways. What makes school so brutally flawed is the aspect that you are thrown into a systematic institution with rules that you have to follow, people that judge you for the way you look, and teachers that aren't even teachers, but vomit machines that only serve for spewing out information in a colorless and uninspiring way. I've actually developed a deep rooted anxiety disorder due to school and perfectionist tendencies. Even when you get 100 percent on an assignment they still criticize you. I can tell you that 90 percent of us try our hardest, but our teachers and parents still stand in the sidelines screaming at us to do better than that.
Do you think our education system is a flawed?
© 2014 Stella Worth