Topic #266:  From Post Something Every Day-Scott Berkun

Scott asks;  “If you could change how schools work, what would you change? What is wrong with how public education for kids is structured? What works well? What specific things about school do you remember, good and bad?”

I recently have watched several videos featuring Sir Ken Robinson a visionary educator out of the UK who encapsulates the anxiety I felt for most of my life in public education.  Check them out here;

and here

I view myself as an artist and it saddens me that it took this long to realize what was always in my heart.

So to the question at hand; what would I do if I could change how schools work?  I would tear them down, starting with the bells.  I would require parents to participate by giving them more options as to where to send their children.  I would encourage teachers to understand that the arts are just as important as the other subjects.  I would demand that passion and character become cornerstones of the whole process.  I would smash the myth that only those who can make it academically or athletically are of more value than those who are more bent towards dancing or singing or fixing things with their hands.  I would abolish grade levels, standardized tests, and arbitrary distinctions such as elementary, middle, and high school.  I would not marginalize those whose journey might lead them to postpone college, or heaven forbid not go at all.  I would want us all to understand that education is a life long process, involves a whole person, and should not be focused solely on a certain sort of academic ability.  I would allow parents, principles, and teachers to create their own curricula with a view towards developing citizens of character.

And on a very personal note I would want to find those boys and girls who are today like I was circa 1989 and let them know that their is nothing wrong with them, that they can accomplish great things, have an amazing impact on their world, and do so without the aid of drugs either bought in a pharmacy or on the street.