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What should be the primary purpose of our education system?

What should be the primary purpose of our education system?

  • To produce students that can outscore other nations on exams

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • To instill moral and/or religious values in students

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • To keep minors busy so they don’t get into trouble

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • To identify the students most likely to become future leaders

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    37

Kandahar

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What do you think should be the primary purpose of our education system? As I see it, part of the problem we have with our schools is that no one is really able to articulate the goal we are trying to achieve, so we can't measure how successful our schools are. I'm curious as to how much our opinions on this subject diverge from one another.

(This poll isn't a trick question or anything with a hidden political agenda.)
 
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Johnny

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1. To teach students a core curriculum.
2. To teach life skills such as personal finance and the like.
3. To teach kids the law, their rights, and real unedited history.
 

MaggieD

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What do you think should be the primary purpose of our education system? As I see it, part of the problem we have with our schools is that no one is really able to articulate the goal we are trying to achieve, so we can't measure how successful our schools are.
Well, I can easily tell you what the minimum is: when someone graduates from high school, they should have learned all the basic life skills for self-sufficiency. Hopefully, they've learned what it will take to succeed in life...maybe for some it's more education, for others it's a trade, for still others it's entrepreneurship. They should know how to balance a checkbook. How credit cards work. How important their credit score is. The real truth about buying on credit. The importance of saving for the future. For those who aren't going on in school, they should be taught interviewing skills and how to go out an actually get a job. By the time someone gets out of high school, they should possess some real interpersonal communication and relationship skills. They should have a good command of the English language, know how to spell, write an intelligent essay. They should be taught the importance of volunteering and civic responsibility.

Students should be exposed to different careers; I think they still do that with 'career day,' but it shouldn't be a once a year program, it should be ongoing. There ought to be classes on "how to think outside the box," real creative problem-solving.

Schools should have a way of identifying those exceptional youngsters who will excel at math or science; language; the arts. Those talents should be developed and encouraged. Those who show an affinity for working with their hands should be given opportunities to explore those avenues.

I guess I'm saying lots of opportunity. Plus, of course, the basics. College can take 'em from there -- for those who choose to attend. For those who can't go to college or don't want to go to college, they'll be much better prepared to face the real world. I could think of a lot more, but I'd better stop.
 

jamesrage

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The primary goal of education should be core curriculum(math,history, science, english/reading). Our constitution, constitutional rights and why the authors of everyone of those amendments were created should be a part of history in the core curriculum.

Things like work ethic, personal finance should be the second goal.

All of these are used to help you find a job, to further your education and to ensure that you know your constitutional rights.
 

pbrauer

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I chose the first option, however I think the second one also applies. This poll should multiple choices.
 

tacomancer

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Well, I can easily tell you what the minimum is: when someone graduates from high school, they should have learned all the basic life skills for self-sufficiency. Hopefully, they've learned what it will take to succeed in life...maybe for some it's more education, for others it's a trade, for still others it's entrepreneurship. They should know how to balance a checkbook. How credit cards work. How important their credit score is. The real truth about buying on credit. The importance of saving for the future. For those who aren't going on in school, they should be taught interviewing skills and how to go out an actually get a job. By the time someone gets out of high school, they should possess some real interpersonal communication and relationship skills. They should have a good command of the English language, know how to spell, write an intelligent essay. They should be taught the importance of volunteering and civic responsibility.

Students should be exposed to different careers; I think they still do that with 'career day,' but it shouldn't be a once a year program, it should be ongoing. There ought to be classes on "how to think outside the box," real creative problem-solving.

Schools should have a way of identifying those exceptional youngsters who will excel at math or science; language; the arts. Those talents should be developed and encouraged. Those who show an affinity for working with their hands should be given opportunities to explore those avenues.

I guess I'm saying lots of opportunity. Plus, of course, the basics. College can take 'em from there -- for those who choose to attend. For those who can't go to college or don't want to go to college, they'll be much better prepared to face the real world. I could think of a lot more, but I'd better stop.
I am of the opinion that skills such as creative thinking, risk-taking, and what not are things that are personality traits and can be learned, but not taught.

I think we should teach them primarily math, science, and english skills and let those who are predisposed be the ones who rise to the top. The rest can fill the other segments of society.
 

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To teach students critical thinking skills
To identify specific needs of each student, and help them best succeed*
To help students prepare for life on their own
 

MaggieD

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I am of the opinion that skills such as creative thinking, risk-taking, and what not are things that are personality traits and can be learned, but not taught.

I think we should teach them primarily math, science, and english skills and let those who are predisposed be the ones who rise to the top. The rest can fill the other segments of society.
You could be right, Mega. I haven't given it much thought. It seems to me, though, that if children are encouraged to be curious and rewarded for creative thinking they stand a good chance of finding that personality trait within themselves.
 

Johnny

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This is based on the premise that I think we should have a public education system (which I don't).

Are you advocating no public school at all or the fed government staying out of it (abolish Dept of Ed) and turn education back to each state?

My stance is the latter. I'm curious as to yours.
 

Harry Guerrilla

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Are you advocating no public school at all or the fed government staying out of it (abolish Dept of Ed) and turn education back to each state?

My stance is the latter. I'm curious as to yours.
None at all.
Way to much incentive for abuse.

If a county or city wants to establish a school, fine but it must not be compulsory.
 

tacomancer

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You could be right, Mega. I haven't given it much thought. It seems to me, though, that if children are encouraged to be curious and rewarded for creative thinking they stand a good chance of finding that personality trait within themselves.
I think to have a good environment where students can explore their creativity, we would probably have to have something like a 1:5 student to teacher ratio, due the face time that would be necessary. That would be very expensive and is probably not practical.
 

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I think to have a good environment where students can explore their creativity, we would probably have to have something like a 1:5 student to teacher ratio, due the face time that would be necessary. That would be very expensive and is probably not practical.
*Shrug* Maybe it'd take that kind of intense one-on-one; but just presenting a problem and asking for "hands up" possible solutions would be a great and easy way to start. That's more the creativity I'm talking about.
 

tacomancer

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*Shrug* Maybe it'd take that kind of intense one-on-one; but just presenting a problem and asking for "hands up" possible solutions would be a great and easy way to start. That's more the creativity I'm talking about.
The students who already have the skills at independent thinking would be the ones to raise hands. Plus you have problems of peer pressure, social discomfort, etc.
 

Winston Smith

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To teach students critical thinking skills
Nailed it. That and fundamentals like reading, writing, etc.

ETA: This is assuming we should have schools at all in the form we currently know. Some would argue that they're designed to discourage critical thinking, and if as I suspect this is true, I'm not sure they can be reformed.
 
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Other: The primary function should be to teach children that we should abolish the idea of a compulsory education.
After we get rid of compulsory detainment in our education system the primary purposes should be in this order

1) Prepare children for life by teaching things like and most certainly not unlimited to the operation and maintenance of car, first aide, understanding how to work as a team, survival training, fire safety, gun safety, uniforms / dress code (sorry, I don't believe clothes makes you into an individual and such a notion is invalid) and many other things that make you into an experienced well equipped individual and not just some helpless useless book worm and math whiz.

2) Reading, Writing and Basic Math.

3) Learning history should be a side effect, not a subject in and of itself.


The education system should AVOID preparing kids for college. If a child shows that he/she can be an asset to academia after given the opportunity to display such an intellectual prowess for it then that child and his/her parents should join programs that prepare that child for an academic career.

The outscoring of other nations is a wasteful goal that only perpetuates national pride or create even more shame for the nation that they already have from social curriculum should the nation not score well.
 

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I wish schools had uniforms in the states as well. It puts tge kids on equal footing when they look the same. Then it's a matter of keeping your uniform clean. As opposed to getting ragged on by kids with the nice clothes.
 

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It is difficult to pick one. I like the first choice if you add the arts. I think that someone who is well educated should have knowledge of the items in the second choice but I don't think those things are really the responsibility of the school. I also think that a good education teaches a person how to learn. We should be learning our entire lives. If most those of us over 40 had stopped learning after high school we certainly wouldn't posting to this forum using this strange looking typewriter in front of some sort of weird TV.
 

RightinNYC

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A system that directs students into higher education or vocational training.

Every student should graduate high school with the skills to pursue a particular career path.
 
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Scarecrow Akhbar

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1) To teach students a core curriculum (e.g. basic math, reading, science, history)
Real Math, Real Reading, Real Science, and Real History. The public schools fail at teaching all the above.

2) To teach students useful life skills (e.g. health, sex education, work ethic, personal finance).
Sex education isn't something schools really need to teach. Most students have something resembling a parent. That's their job.
Nor is work ethic. They should be able to learn work ethic simply by repeating the fourth grade three times or more until they learn to do their homework properly and on time.
"Personal finance" is a subset of the basic accounting class all students should pass before they get a diploma.

3) To enable students to find jobs after they’re done with their education.
Today's schools do this just fine. However, the high school graduates and their skillset from the public schools are out competed by the similarly skilled invaders from Mexico.

What I don't see listed is "how to reason coherently and how to discern truth from lie, and why truth is preferable" as one of the choices.
 

Scarecrow Akhbar

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Are you advocating no public school at all or the fed government staying out of it (abolish Dept of Ed) and turn education back to each state?

My stance is the latter. I'm curious as to yours.
The Federal Government has no Constitutional role in Public Education. This was settled by Thomas Jefferson and his Congress, which refused to write the Constitutional Amendment Jefferson requested authorizing federal funding for education.

Public education is a matter for the states, and only the states.
 

Orion

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I wish the poll were multiple choice.
 

Scarecrow Akhbar

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I wish schools had uniforms in the states as well. It puts tge kids on equal footing when they look the same. Then it's a matter of keeping your uniform clean. As opposed to getting ragged on by kids with the nice clothes.
Robotics is supposed to be the study of computer programmers and engineers, not the product of a school system.

It's un-American.
 

spud_meister

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Robotics is supposed to be the study of computer programmers and engineers, not the product of a school system.

It's un-American.
:rofl am i also to take it you are opposed to companies making their employees wear uniforms too, or what about military, police, fire brigade uniforms? are the unamerican too?
 

Scarecrow Akhbar

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:rofl am i also to take it you are opposed to companies making their employees wear uniforms too, or what about military, police, fire brigade uniforms? are the unamerican too?
An employee is in a voluntary association with his employer.

A child is required, by state law, to attend some form of school. His participation is not voluntary and his choice of clothing is a matter, within very broad limits indeed, between himself and his guardians. The state has few laws regarding clothing, and children should not be given special considerations that deprive them of their freedom simply because they're required by law to attend school.

Glad to see the "very liberal" weighing in on the side of overweening state interference in a private matter.


Besides, the girls wearing those Hot Dog on a Stick uniforms are so cute in their abject embarassment who could want to stop that?
 
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