What is education; knowledge in basic
skills, academics, technical, discipline, citizenship or is it something else? Our formal education system says only academic basics are important and that is based on collecting knowledge without understanding its value. How about the processing of knowledge, using inspiration, visionary ambitions, creativity, risk, ability to bounce back from failure, motivation? Many education institutions don’t consider these skills. These skills are associated with understanding the value of knowledge. There is a huge disconnected gap and this is a problem for high school students in particular.
What is education? The answer is, all elements in the opening paragraph and more, relate to education and all should be considered. This would be ideal and sounds good, but “all” is not possible where performance must be measured. Only what can be measured will be selected and the measuring tool is the written test. Anyone who does not have the ability to put clear thoughts on paper is labeled a failure. All natural skills, including knowledge processing, does not count. The fact is, what is exercised grows stronger, what is ignored stays dormant. The classroom exercises the collection of academics leaving all other natural skills in the closet.
Note: As I write this, e-learning is becoming an education model that the present system cannot compete with. It is focusing on what motivates rather than what the system thinks is good for students. It is also leaving out politicians, textbook industries, testing companies, and unions. These forces are now fighting back, trying to maintain a system that is in their interest, not the students. At this time, they are focusing on standardized testing.