The Educational Crisis in America Part II…education in America is in a state of emergency. The 1988 Democrat presidential candidate Michael Dukakis said that the awful state of education in America was at the heart of all that was wrong with America.To paraphrase another source: organized terrorist activity itself would be hard pressed to cause as much demoralization – not to mention the destruction of minds and spirits – that takes place in schools and schoolyards in the United States on a daily basis.
Wither private education in the United States today, which seems to turn out an uninterrupted supply of button-downed and Ivy-educated Hedge Funders? What about the rest of us? Whatever the answer is, we better do it now.
A few simple tweaks might be in order. First of all,how about an early diet of critical thinking starting at age 5 or 6 with an equal emphasis on right-brain development. Let us offer effective training in mathematics for everyone, especially at the secondary level. It may not be necessary to scratch sacrifice homecoming and pep rallies in order to achieve these goals, if a sufficient number of parents are willing and able to fund them privately.
Also a required philosophy class for high school seniors may be a good idea, to keep to keep us from turning into logarithm-spouting robots and/or weak-willed artsy types.
What we’re talking about here is getting back to a core curriculum of readin’, writin’ and arithmetic. Oh yeah…and thinking. Social skills? How about teaching grade school kids how to work together by giving them actual work to do. All of them.
That way we they can learn and perfect techniques of problem solving, hone various technical skills and learn the kind of cooperation that is essential to any well-oiled business endeavor. If we have to call in legions of teachers from math-friendly climes such as India or China to help us achieve this goal, than so much the better…and let us count ourselves lucky to have their help.
Let the football stars find their own way to gridiron glory after school and on a volunteer basis. Their parents can pay for it all out of their own pockets should they so desire. We can also hire on-site tutors as well as traditional teachers as part of a “hub ‘n spoke” system with computer hardware and live teachers housed in regional centers with online access to same.