Rhetorical Rant: Education System
According to the U.S. department of education an estimated 1.2 million U.S. high school students drop out annually, left with no degree, no qualifications and no work experience. The American education system is based on the idea that no child should be left behind -opportunity for all. However, encouraging everyone to attend university regardless of how impractical it may be for the individual, is part of the problem.
In Kindergarten, elementary school, middle school, high school and university, millions of students are herded through the same education system independent of their differing levels of intelligence and skills. The limited funds put into the education system are spent on providing a generalized education, which is geared towards moving everyone through the system that inevitably hurts both the academically and non-academically oriented. Some argue that America’s education system is based far too much on standardized testing, allowing others to determine their academic strengths and weaknesses. But the issue is that every year students go through standardized testing, are told their results and then the system simply continues with business as usual. A system where students are placed in separate schools based on their interests, intelligence, and abilities is highly discouraged in most of the country because everyone wants to believe that they are above average.
We are raising generations of students who believe that they can put little effort into their education and still succeed at university, making it no surprise that young Americans are commonly referred to as “chronic underachievers.” But is this the fault of the students or is it the fault of the American culture poisoning them with the misconstrued ideas that they will all go on to become chemical engineers, lawyers and doctors. The United States has the 22nd highest amount of high school dropouts of 27 countries according to recent research. And what are we doing to help these dropouts, unlike in many other nations, there are few programs in place to help them. So my question is what is wrong with testing one’s aptitude and developing a dual academic system to help both academically and non-academically oriented students to succeed in life?
Separate schooling would group students with others who have similar interests, abilities, and goals while allowing for them to develop the skills to succeed. It creates a more realistic outlook for future plans. It allows for choice, it allows for a system that doesn’t pressure or give the illusion that everyone must seek higher education in order to be a happy and successful person.