December 27th 2016 – By: William Larsen – Civilians News – “News For All Views” – “The Future Of High School Education” –
American Education Today
I question America’s, “Public Education System.”
Music and food are declining in quality, while simultaneously wages are also in decline, despite climbing cost of living.
And personally, I blame these circumstances on the American Education System; both at the high school and college level.
Job Hunting Post College Graduation
As a 30 year old college graduate, I didn’t expect to wait until I was 31 years old, to start a career….. However, that’s exactly what’s been happening to me, post college graduation.
I’ve filed thousands of resumes, maybe over 5k. I’ve also searched multiple job boards, arrived in person, called prospective employers and blogged about jobs. I’ve talked to strangers, I’ve done it all, yet, nothing has worked. I’ve done all the ground work and educated myself, almost entirely on my own. Yet despite these efforts, in the end, I always seem to come up short.
This year, I’ve even moved to NYC, thinking that perhaps, just maybe it was partially due to the cities that I’ve lived in. In fact, I’ve moved a few times and nothing has worked…… I’ve worked several lower class jobs, but I’ve never found employment, that allowed me to keep my dignity, for any long period of time.
The Value Of College Education
Throughout this circumstance, throughout this quest for a career, I’m led to wonder, “what is the future of high school and college education?” After a long and rather expensive, self financed education, I still struggle to get a decent job. In fact I struggle everyday, in seeking consistent and long term employment, even after attending 1 year of law school. Is this a sign of my own impotence in the job market? Or, at what point does my circumstance, become a reflection of the institution, as opposed to the individual? Should I continue to blame myself, forever?
I don’t blame myself as much anymore….
In 2011, I protested with 50k people at Occupy Portland, for this very reason….. And to be fully honest, sometimes I don’t think there’s much more I could do. (Also worth noting, I haven’t missed a day of work in over 4 years, working jobs that fall short of the title, “career.”)
What Should Change?
What can I do? What could I do, to make, “this system,” better? Especially for those experiencing similar frustrations, who might follow after me? What can I do, as opposed to simply complaining? In that frame of mind, I can offer a few solutions based on my own experiences, in the job market, on how to better serve, “general education,” to future generations….
With that being said; what can we change? What can, my aging generation of 30 somethings, “change,” over the next 20 years, to make the American Education System stronger?
Today, I consider myself a critical scholar in all sciences, even though, this was not always the case. I believe this is true today, because of a situation, where I often seek information that I was pushed away from as a child. This is because subjects, that I enjoy reading today, were in many ways tarnished for me as a child, through overbearing teachers and rigid memorization, growing up.
For this reason, I would like to see further emphasis placed on, “theoretical sciences,” in general education today. I find that when taught properly; advanced physics, software engineering, gene therapy and all sorts of real world innovations, that perhaps once seemed beyond a general education…. can be taught to kids and in fact, can be FUN, for students to learn. This is especially true, when taught from the approach of real world application and not simply memorization.
I also believe that many of these subjects, appearing on the surface as, “overbearing,” should come to be taught at the HIGH SCHOOL LEVEL. I strongly believe that many of these subjects, should not just be taught at overpriced colleges. For example; Einstein’s work on relativity, which was first crafted in 1905…. could and should be taught, particularly at the high school level. And while I recognize that not all students and not all schools, can cater to that curriculum, some can. For this reason, I believe that many more teachers, should aim to teach relativity at the high school level. (General Relativity, as a scientific work, is over 100 years old….)
The importance of physics, is gravely undervalued in public education today. For example, we use the electromagnetic spectrum, through radio waves and things of that sort everyday, yet, we teach very little of this, in the American Education System.
I also believe, that computer programming should become a; core, high school curriculum. Although, I will admit, this ideal is a bit more of a reach. That is because Artificial Intelligence, might actually replace computer coding, in the next 10 years. Nevertheless, this is yet another case, where the curriculum’s of my childhood, are often feeling more and more outdated, everyday.
With that being said; how can we make public education and public schools, “stronger?”
I believe that another facet of the problem, is corporate America. That’s because a great deal of information, is often kept secretive today, in the name of capitalism. This is done for a variety of reasons, in a variety of industries, in order to maintain corporate entities, “strength and positions,” in and around the free market.
However, imagine a world, where public schools taught kids; “this was Michael Jordan’s workout routine.”
Furthermore, what if that information was simply made public, for general education purposes.
I strongly believe that some of this, “type of information,” should be made available for public schools today. In particular, I would like to see corporate information revealed, both in the technology sector and physical fitness. I firmly believe that this simple, “change,” would greatly improve America’s Education System.
Also, I would like to see a renewed focus on “general education,” as opposed to “higher education” today. In fact, I believe that through creating a renewed focus, on general education, this reform would simultaneously combat the ethnic divide in America today, in large part, resulting from overpriced institutions.
The Importance Of Biographies And Autobiographies
As well as advocating for; a renewed focus on general education, theoretical sciences and corporate information sharing, I’d also like to see a revitalized focus on history. In particular, I’d like to see core curriculum’s of the future, revolving around biographical and autobiographical works. Over the years, biographies have greatly shaped my adult life, and I’ve personally discovered, autobiographies are perhaps the most important historical documents, in print. Furthermore, focusing general education on biographical works, might also give kids the vitally needed role models, that so many children lack today.
In my opinion, kids need role models, even more than they need, “grade point averages.” So why not teach William Wallace’s fight for freedom, in public schools? Some will argue biographical works can be culturally and even racially biased, yet, I find this argument less important, than the reward of giving children the role models, they so often lack today. I find this to be the case, even when some biographical works, are in some instances, politically biased….
For example; William Wallace, was estimated to be 6 toot 7 inches tall…. *See the Wallace Sword….
How many high school students, are aware of that fact? Furthermore, I believe a lack of historical perspective, is a major reason our countries overall mental health, continues to degenerate, particularly from children lacking leg strength, but watching basketball.
Culture In School, the Culture Of Education
The Greek’s worshiped their bodies and held Olympic games, for 800 years before Christ. Some of those Olympic trials, even flooded the Colosseum with water, in order to recreate naval battles, for people to witness, centuries ago. Nevertheless, we don’t teach kids any of that today. (How ironic, that we so often discuss, “race” in the media today, but we never talk about, “the race…..” or the, “1 stad,” and many other, “Olympic trials of millenium’s past……”)
Today, we teach kids very little about physical health, the importance of running, and their ancestry. This is particularly true of Greek culture and the importance of respect and respecting one’s own body, and heritage. FURTHERMORE, WE EXCLUDE MANY OF THESE TEACHINGS ABOUT PHYSICAL HEALTH, DESPITE THAT MANY OF THESE TEACHINGS, ARE OVER 3,000 YEARS OLD!
Culturally speaking, our ancestry is who many of us are. However, all too often, in today’s society, people are blind to it and I believe this is primarily due, to watered down education. That’s who I am, that is my ancestry, however, today I’m lost to it. Today, I’m eating double cheeseburgers, drinking beer, letting, “the new American culture,” turn into Jerry Jones’ football game… And for what? For profits…… This is why I believe, this circumstance we call “public education,” is actually making America weaker today, due to sub standard education and greed.
In many ways, current education has become so, “culture-less,” in favor of big business’, that we don’t even teach kids about the legends of, 50 and 60 years ago, let alone past millennia……
Why not teach kids the legacies of; Mickey Mantle, William Wallace, Eugene V. Debs, Achilles, Mahatma Ghandi, Alexander the Great, Cesar, Augustus, and even the Buddha, or Christ himself? In my opinion, censoring our public education system, from this type of information, leaves many students in the worst of predicaments today…… Furthermore, why not teach kids about Vladimir Putin? Or China’s President Xi?
In conclusion, I’d like to see biographies and autobiographies (*cough Tesla), brought BACK into western education today. Specifically, I’d like to see this occur, even when some of these prose are considered, politically, or culturally, biased……
Beyond that, I’d also like to see one more Greek tradition, passed onto American students, over time, as well…..
I’d like to see running, incorporated into American high school education….
In fact, I believe that one Presidential debate itself, should be changed to a 1 mile run……. This would force candidates to exude a different kind of grit/effort, while running for public office.
In fact, I believe that every student in America, should receive a personal hourglass, as a token of high school graduation. This hourglass, with sand counting down to each student’s individual 1 mile time, could be given to each student, on the day they graduate high school…..
This hourglass, could come to symbolize high school graduation, in America.
In ancient Greece, the hourglass…. and the sand inside of the hourglass, could’ve allegorically represented, “impurities,” in physical and mental health. In essence, this would illustrate achievement, in physical toughness, as well as mental conditioning, while also illustrating the amount of “sand” in ones body and mind….. This could work as a symbol of high school graduation, in a rebuffed American education system. This, “new school,” high school graduation could be really beneficial for a lot of kids too, who perhaps don’t know how to “get good at basketball.” For this reason, I believe that an hourglass, would greatly benefit ALL students, as a token of moving forward, past high school graduation…… God bless.
-William Larsen; Civilians News Founder.
PS: Every race has a super hero….