Day 20 – How important do you think education is?
To Be or Not To Be…Educated?
How important is an education to me? Education is extremely important. I was lucky enough to go to nursing school and college and I feel that all kids should have that opportunity. Unfortunately, two things conspire against this. One is “Common Core” being used in our public school system and being middle class. I add here that the opinion I express are my own.
I have a 6-year-old granddaughter who is spending her summer with me babysitting while school is out. I am experiencing directly what Common Core does. It focuses on testing and kids are taught what is on the test. If the child is bright and thins “outside the box”, they are looked at as disruptive and a problem to be dealt with. The bright child learns that the only way to get the teacher’s attention is to act out or break the rules. Not all teachers treat bright children this way, but many younger teachers do. And the school system rewards this behavior from teachers by always focusing on testing since scores need to be high enough for the school ranking. It is a complicated political fire keg for sure.
Her parents insisted that she be tested for giftedness and they were being told it was a waste of time. In the end, testing was done and she was found to have an IQ of 146 which is very high. It is hard to believe that she is now protected by the Americans With Disabilities Act and the school must provide for special giftedness classes for her. All of the acting out and negative behaviors that her teacher was seeing, are thought to be due to boredom in class.
She is spending the summer learning from some workbooks that we bought for her for 1st-grade math, vocabulary, and writing in journal daily. We also have fun time of course with TV, Kindle time, field trips (we went to the Library and she is taking swimming lessons) but her parents work and she needs some stimulation too. It is amazing for me to see her learning at her level and beyond.
The second problem with education is that the middle-class is penalized by the government for being too rich for educational assistance but too poor to pay for the education beyond high school. There are not enough scholarships to go around and middle-class kids need to work and help their parents to pay for college and/or assume large educational student loan debt that they will spend their life paying for. It is really sad.
I experienced this first-hand with my daughter going to college. She qualified for some scholarships but also needed to work part-time to afford college and she lived at home. She still is strapped with student loans to pay off and it will take her years to do that. I even took out a parent loan to allow her to visit New York and Boston as a graduation gift so that she could visit the art museums that she studied so much about…her major was Art History.
In the US, you can’t get a job or career paying over minimum wage without a college degree and even with the degree, there is no guarantee you will get a job in your studied career. She works as an associate editor at a local medical school in Nashville rather than in a museum.
How do you feel about education and your educational system?