#1
Hello. Skip all this if you don't give a **** (until last line)

A while ago, I posted a thread about how much I dislike education etc. and the general consensus of the replies was that education is boring and not always a positive experience, even if it is a more positive experience than your work life may be. This as well as the agreement that nobody really knows what should be done about education, due to the importance of its goals etc. This brings me to this thread

I want to look into what could actually be done to make education better, so here we go.

The first and most important thing is to define the real goals and importance of education.

Education provides the young generation of people with the discipline and knowledge necessary to function in normal life to benefit themselves and their country, and the world (as is becoming more important). Education also can serve a role in improving the "mental fitness" of a student by increasing their capacity and ability to learn and do tasks that are mentally difficult.

The idea of the greatness of public education comes from a time in which being educated put you in the high tiers of society, and meant you had very good leverage to get a job. In the current conditions, being educated might not even help, and it only helps for one category of jobs. To me, the ONLY reason people who drop out of school are often dumber, is just that. They didn't value having a diploma enough to spend another 2-3 years being bored. Classes are boring. Even classes you are interested in, are often still boring.

To me the educational system is inefficient at best. However I am not posting this to complain about the problems, rather to discuss ways of actually fixing the problem.

Here are some rough ideas

- I think schools could have more debates/discussions.
- I don't think age should be so important in education. I think classes should be mostly independent of each other and allow for the success of the individual.
- Computer related courses could very well become a more significant class. I think the thought process as well as the knowledge could be very helpful in normal life. The ignorance of many people on the topic of computers is odd given how tied we are to computers.
- In addition to the normal school bands, allow kids to have a dedicated period to practice and jamming. Why not? It wouldn't even have to give a credit. For most instruments you would have to bring your own. Just make the bus drivers let you carry them.
- An attempt to make teachers less condescending could be good. There are many teachers who use their classes as anger/power outlets. I think if it would not be received wrong for kids to criticize teachers, teachers might actually improve themselves.


I will refine this, add more, etc. later. Until then, I want your ideas on making education better.
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#3
Quote by Mistress_Ibanez
Education already works like that in the UK.


No, no it does not.
#4
Quote by robhc
No, no it does not.


Well, except the stupid bits. The school I work at does linear tutoring for pastoral subjects and computers are used in most lessons. There are many chances throughout the school year to engage in debates.

The rest is just the TS being sore that some bus driver made him leave his guitar at home, waaaah I wasn't allowed to play 3 chords whilst giving bitter looks to all the girls in the playground who ignore me...
#6
Quote by Mistress_Ibanez
The rest is just the TS being sore that some bus driver made him leave his guitar at home, waaaah I wasn't allowed to play 3 chords whilst giving bitter looks to all the girls in the playground who ignore me...

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#7
Kids need to realize that they don't know what they want or what's good for them at the stage in their life when they're going through their formative years of school. At that point, they haven't lived or experienced enough of life in most cases to really know what's viable or functional beyond a school setting, and honestly, as a fool who skipped a lot and blew it off only to end up learning it on my own - what kind of fool (myself included) ignores free knowledge?

In retrospect, it was there for me to benefit from, and I should have put more in to get more out, because that's how school works - you get what you give.

Now I'm not saying that's 100% in all areas - there are situations where a school or school system is just poor (funding, supplies, teachers, etc.), but saying that something is 'boring' and trying to pass that off as a valid reason to ignore something without weighing its possible benefit is just a waste.
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#8
Quote by Mistress_Ibanez
Well, except the stupid bits. The school I work at does linear tutoring for pastoral subjects and computers are used in most lessons. There are many chances throughout the school year to engage in debates.

The rest is just the TS being sore that some bus driver made him leave his guitar at home, waaaah I wasn't allowed to play 3 chords whilst giving bitter looks to all the girls in the playground who ignore me...

But the vast majority don't. We have to ask why that is.
#9
Quote by Mistress_Ibanez
Well, except the stupid bits. The school I work at does linear tutoring for pastoral subjects and computers are used in most lessons. There are many chances throughout the school year to engage in debates.


My school was nothing like that. Computers were used once in a blue-moon, apart from the interactive white-boards that were made mandatory in all class-rooms here, though they were still only ever used as a normal white-board, you just couldn't read it. All the lessons as well were just getting talked at by the teachers, except for the vast-majority of the sixth form ones, where we usually went off track and talked about random crap and didn't learn anything.
Worrying thing is, my school was one of the top in the country. But this is NI and we're shit, soo....
#10
I find the educational system to be quite functional, however i would have to make one change.

Let all the kids who want to go, drop out, they aren't contributing anything and usually end up wound up about going which can lead to violence and disruption to others learning. Apart from that the system works quite well in the UK.

Edit: A lot of what you mentioned is used at uni's anyway, i think that it isn't displayed in school as much because discipline is a very important part of the first and secondary education system so that people can advance to teaching styles etc as mentioned while still being at their most efficient.
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Last edited by !-twisty-! at Mar 28, 2011,
#11
sorry, only read the last line. the only thing wrong with my school(s) is they have the wrong mindset on motivating kids. their standards are too low; they push kids to get "5 A*-C", which makes their other 6-7 GCSEs a messabout.
#12
Quote by Kumanji
But the vast majority don't. We have to ask why that is.


Some people just don't want to. It's not a bourgeois conspiracy.

I was too embarrassed to open my mouth the whole way through school, I didn't engage once in a debate. No conspiracy.
#13
Quote by laid-to-waste
sorry, only read the last line. the only thing wrong with my school(s) is they have the wrong mindset on motivating kids. their standards are too low; they push kids to get "5 A*-C", which makes their other 6-7 GCSEs a messabout.



Yes, but to be fair no-one really wants 5C's and 6U's, + after your GCSE's its not like they count for much to employers as so many people have at least a levels.
Quote by TheQuailman
I wish my amp sucked on my knob.


if you were to smash a child around the head with a full bottle of no more tears shampoo...would it be ironic if they cried
#14
I went to the school like half the innercity kids went to and then from parts of the nicer parts it was interesting to say the least the teachers were great but they didn't give to shits if you did your work they just cared about dress code
I had straight F's never got in trouble for it never even said anything to me
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#15
Quote by !-twisty-!
Yes, but to be fair no-one really wants 5C's and 6U's, + after your GCSE's its not like they count for much to employers as so many people have at least a levels.


Saying this, the same applies for degrees. 20 years ago they were priceless, now they're not worth the paper they're printed on.

I think the future is in NVQs and vocational based quals/certificates.
#16
Quote by Mistress_Ibanez
Some people just don't want to. It's not a bourgeois conspiracy.

I was too embarrassed to open my mouth the whole way through school, I didn't engage once in a debate. No conspiracy.

Seriously? I was obviously going to go on about how the capitalist system engenders kids to be embarrassed in class.


So, we have to give kids the confidence to contribute. I think that happens at a very early age; the people not joining in class debates at secondary schools are almost certainly the same ones who didn't get involved at primary school.
#17
Quote by Kumanji
Seriously? I was obviously going to go on about how the capitalist system engenders kids to be embarrassed in class.


So, we have to give kids the confidence to contribute. I think that happens at a very early age; the people not joining in class debates at secondary schools are almost certainly the same ones who didn't get involved at primary school.


No that's not true, I was given every chance at primary school.


There's a term coming in now - "disaffected" - to describe kids who really don't want to be in school. They can have confidence issues or things like that. There are year 7 transition groups for dissafecteds in some schools now which deliver primary-style crosscurricular teaching in one place whilst helping kids to build confidence.
#18
Quote by Mistress_Ibanez
No that's not true, I was given every chance at primary school.


There's a term coming in now - "disaffected" - to describe kids who really don't want to be in school. They can have confidence issues or things like that. There are year 7 transition groups for dissafecteds in some schools now which deliver primary-style crosscurricular teaching in one place whilst helping kids to build confidence.

And you know this how? Such dismissal of the 'obvious' is always dangerous, it's often in those assumptions that we find the Devil lurking.

And I suppose it's healthy that we're dealing the fact that our current educational system is extremely efficient at creating kids who hate the system.
#19
Quote by Kumanji
And you know this how? Such dismissal of the 'obvious' is always dangerous, it's often in those assumptions that we find the Devil lurking.

And I suppose it's healthy that we're dealing the fact that our current educational system is extremely efficient at creating kids who hate the system.


From my observation and volunteering in a disaffected class for year 7s. It's really effective actually, they were all doing really well.
#20
Quote by Mistress_Ibanez
From my observation and volunteering in a disaffected class for year 7s. It's really effective actually, they were all doing really well.

That's good. I just worry how we classify 'doing really well' is prey to so many assumptions and underlying unexamined impetuses. Is doing well in exams really what we need education to be all about, is five GCSEs A*-C really an education, etc etc etc.
#22
Quote by King_Arthur

- I think schools could have more debates/discussions.
- I don't think age should be so important in education. I think classes should be mostly independent of each other and allow for the success of the individual.
- Computer related courses could very well become a more significant class. I think the thought process as well as the knowledge could be very helpful in normal life. The ignorance of many people on the topic of computers is odd given how tied we are to computers.
- In addition to the normal school bands, allow kids to have a dedicated period to practice and jamming. Why not? It wouldn't even have to give a credit. For most instruments you would have to bring your own. Just make the bus drivers let you carry them.
- An attempt to make teachers less condescending could be good. There are many teachers who use their classes as anger/power outlets. I think if it would not be received wrong for kids to criticize teachers, teachers might actually improve themselves..



-A great idea if the topics that are being debated/discussed are things that kids care about (of which there aren't many. trust me i'm 16)
-K
-They are, but no computer can replace the human mind
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-True, public school teachers are esentially public servants and should act as such. however, private school teachers are a completely different animal when it comes to opinion expressing and teaching styles (ow, my ass)
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#23
Quote by Tanglewoodguit
Saying this, the same applies for degrees. 20 years ago they were priceless, now they're not worth the paper they're printed on.

I think the future is in NVQs and vocational based quals/certificates.



Most definitely.

In my opinion the older you get the worse the education system becomes; if I was employing staff I would take 2 good A levels or practical experience over a 2:1 degree any day. Maybe/probably over a first.
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#24
Quote by Tanglewoodguit
Saying this, the same applies for degrees. 20 years ago they were priceless, now they're not worth the paper they're printed on.

I think the future is in NVQs and vocational based quals/certificates.

That's not quite true... If you go to a shit university on a shit course your degree will be worthless in terms of job prospects, if you get a good degree from a good university employers will be ripping your arm off (well not literally, but you'll be in good stead for getting the job you want.)

Just look take a look at the banking sector, the majority (if not all) of recruitment comes from the top 20 universities especially the quantitative subjects. The actuarial profession is the same. Engineering recruitment is very similar. Law uses a wider range of universities but most still come from the top universities.

It's all very well saying "A-levels plus experience" is better but to even get experience in a top job you need to have damn good grades and a damn good degree (or at least be studying for a damn good degree.)
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#25
Quote by King_Arthur

- I think schools could have more debates/discussions.

Schools frequently offer up the opportunity for debate in the classroom. A lot of the time people choose not to participate for one reason or another, even though once you force them to give up an opinion they have logical, intelligent, and fully formed ideas on the subject. People just tend not to enjoy debating in class for one reason or another. The education system is fine in this regard, seriously.

Quote by King_Arthur
- I don't think age should be so important in education. I think classes should be mostly independent of each other and allow for the success of the individual.

Classes should be based on development, ability, and desire. Personally, I had a few chances during my school career to skip a grade/go to a gifted school and I chose not to. Sure, the current system does use age as a factor in education, but that's because it is a factor. Age is disregarded to a certain extent in circumstances where it doesn't reflect a student's ability and maturity (if the student consents, of course). There is also the whole idea of fitting in a specific curriculum which provides everyone with a general education. Once specialization starts to occur on a broader scale (upper years of secondary school) the age factor starts to fade away, as well as if the student demonstrates some of the aforementioned qualities. Granted, the system could be improved. If you have any viable overhauls/adjustments to the current system I'd be glad to hear them.
Quote by King_Arthur
- Computer related courses could very well become a more significant class. I think the thought process as well as the knowledge could be very helpful in normal life. The ignorance of many people on the topic of computers is odd given how tied we are to computers.

I don't see the need to heavily integrate computers in to a class unless it is necessary to the curriculum or improves the quality of education enough to merit the cost.

Quote by King_Arthur
- In addition to the normal school bands, allow kids to have a dedicated period to practice and jamming. Why not? It wouldn't even have to give a credit. For most instruments you would have to bring your own. Just make the bus drivers let you carry them.

Because it is a waste of time in a school setting.

Quote by King_Arthur
- An attempt to make teachers less condescending could be good. There are many teachers who use their classes as anger/power outlets. I think if it would not be received wrong for kids to criticize teachers, teachers might actually improve themselves.

My teachers were all rather excellent. Maybe if you improved conditions for teachers and your education systems in general you would have a better situation in regards to teachers. Antagonizing the current teachers certainly isn't going to be any more productive.