Wednesday, April 2, 2014

The Product of Education?

When you are manufacturing something, you need a uniform, standardized end result that you can market to your customers.  People want a product that is without deviation from the original.  They want it to be identical to what you have advertised.  If any nuance is found, they believe that they have received an inferior product. Which is all well and good when you are discussing cars, baked goods or cell phones.  But why do we hold to the same approach in education?

Do children come into this world on an assembly-line?  Are their personalities picked from a "personality chip" and downloaded?  What a ridiculous notion.  Of course not!  Children are born into families. Personalities are innate and behaviors are learned.  There is no standardized product for human beings. 

Though many would have us believe that there could be.  

Is that what education has come to now? Programming?  A transfer of data from the the transmitter (teacher) to the data receptacle (student)? Are we talking about computers or children?

At a town hall I attended recently, I was greatly disturbed to hear how our children were referred to as a "product"; over and over again it was a point that was reiterated by the elected officials present.  I wholeheartedly disagree with that industrialized notion that my children are an end product of education.  If that were the case then education would solve all of society's ills.  It is a lie that has been perpetuated throughout the years.  Early education, longer school days, more of society revolving around the schools will not solve our problems.  Society should be family-centric not school-centric. Families are the foundations of society, not education.  Children are the end result of families, not schools.

Why does our government seek a standardized product?  It is because they have customers (corporations and special interest groups) who have invested large amounts of capital in the schools and those customers are demanding what they have paid for.  Our nation's educational choices are being driven by the needs of those "customers."  

Does anyone else feel like your children have been sold to the highest bidder? Perhaps we should inform the government that our children are not "human capital", "future workforce" or the "end product."  Our children are OUR children not their children, and they were not created to fulfill the needs of the State.

(Post reprinted with permission from

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