Sunday, April 19, 2009

Education for the Future

As I continue to outline details of my "revolutionary manifesto," this time I'll focus on education policy. If you're a regular reader  have written some of the basics about this before (see here).

What is there to do, in addition to federalizing education, consolidating bureaucracies, connecting  educational schools to work preparation, putting all university students in education service for at least a year and coordinating education with public assistance programs? Lots.

Let's merge private and public education so that everybody has the same stake in the same system. And let's fund schools by population, not political clout or wealth.

Let's establish one national curriculum designed for a world power, not a county fair. It's incredible that Americans who have supposedly been educated cannot place a substantial number of countries on the map, nor recognize an amendment of the Constitution, nor speak a foreign language with at least passable fluency!

To rid the system of its deadwood, let's establish an exit career track for educators at 5, 10, 15, 20 years of service. Most teachers who can't teach won't leave because there is nowhere to go with a teaching credential.

Similarly, let's liberalize credentialling to allow people who actually know and have experience at something useful to share their expertise with young people, even if they don't speak pedagoguese.

Let's replace unions, which are more suitable for industrial settings, with professional societies that promote excellence in exchange for salary and job security.

5 comments:

Joan19 said...

You don't mention parental involvement and moral support for the teachers who are becoming increasingly over-burdened with bureaucracy and asked to deal with under-socialised, violent children! Should qualified teachers have to show youngsters how to get dressed and use eating utensils?

Anne said...

Most of the very qualified teachers that I know love children in the first place! Probably all of them.

(Teachers in my area are very, very well supported in my area of the woods.)

Plus there is a pretty vibrant usage of pre-K care here of which parents are strong encouraged to send their children to.

Anne

Anne said...

PS, It's the teachers who don't love children or even like their job that would be filtered out quicker in a plan like Cecilieaux'.

==========
One of the strong limitations of education is that teachers have very little leeway to be innovate. Curriculums are strictly mandated.

Anne

Anonymous said...

Taint easy, McGee! There is no one certain method
or personal level of skills that will enhance our schools. Like most of us, children (and adults) gather knowledge through experience. They/we must learn how to gather knowledge from many sources and how to apply what we have learned to various applications.

Cecilieaux said...

If it were easy, Anonymous, one wouldn't need to make proposals. However, with respect to education I think enough is known. We don't have to keep waiting forever for research, especially when there's a crying need right now to fix the system.

Anne, yes, by all means innovate so long as, at the end of the day, they can pass some national test that shows they well acquainted with the common knowledge that a high school graduate should have.

Joan, I don't quite understand your issue. It seems to be blame-shifting.