What is wrong with education today? and how are you going to fix it?
This is a question that was posed to me by a Baby Boomer family member at Christmas and I admit at first I was caught off guard. Feeling as though it was the beginning of an attack on my chosen profession. But once we started talking, I quickly realised what my answer is. I believe that the problem is…
SOME PEOPLE JUST DON’T CARE!
Gone are the days when a good education was valued and teachers were respected. Last year I was a casual at a number of schools, and thinking back on my time I realise that many of the behavioural or learning challenges that I faced with students came from the students not caring about their learning. They didn’t see the value in education, didn’t see how it was going to benefit them, and therefore why should they bother? Why should they listen to you? What impact could you have in their lives? and it didn’t always just come from the kids.
There are parents out there who, without intending too, started this process. Either through what they have said or not said or done or not done. Somewhere along the line they have given the impression that it is ok for other things to have a higher priority in their life. For example, it is ok to play the xbox/wii/computer/Playstation/tablet rather than do your homework or practice your reading, writing or any other skills that they need to work on; it is ok to not do your homework today, you can just do it tomorrow; or simply not asking at all, it is one thing for your child to be independent, it is another for them to just be left to their own devices.
Then when the reports come around, these parents and students are faced with poor results and society blames the teacher. No one takes a look at the effort was put in. Those students who succeed will always be the ones who put in the effort, who work hard and strive to do better. For those students it is often the parent who has placed value on education, who has instilled within them a respect for their teachers. Therefore, instilling within them with the values that they were given as a chid, as were their parents before them and their parents before them etc
So what am I going to do about it? well I intend to show students the value of education; explain why we are learning what we are learning, why we are doing what we are doing, how will these skills impact their lives in the future. For it is my hope that if the value of an education is increased then so will the education system.