WHEN EDUCATION FAILS, A NATION FAILS

When education fails, a nation fails. It is a slow eroding process. Eventually affecting the economic and social well being of a nation.

Satyendra Singh ‘Skyamal’ said, “Education is the future of a nation.” Richard Mitchell, “People who cannot put strings of sentences together in good order cannot think.”

American public schools are in a free fall. A 2014 study ranked the United states 29th in math, science and reading.

Student achievement is the best indicator of a nation’s future economic health. Applying that standard, the United States is on a downward economic trend. Definitely in the near future. Since the economy presently is not that great, the downward trend may already have begun.

One measure of educational success/failure is the high school dropout rate. 1.2 million every year. An average of 7,000 a day. Equates to 25 percent of the entire high school population.

Sixty percent of black men never graduate. Sixty percent of them will go to jail at some point in their lives.

The United States is becoming less competitive globally. Education in other industrialized nations has caught up or surpassed the United States. Failing schools lead to failing societies.

Grammar and high school teachers are professionals. They want to teach. However federally designed programs ill equip them. Instead of teaching the basics, teachers are compelled to teach students to pass national examinations. Teacher success is based on the results of these tests. Students are not taught to think. They are taught how to score highly on a given test.

Federal programs such as No Child Left Behind and Common Core have done more to hurt young students than help them.

Teachers are further burdened by lack of class room decorum. They are required first to maintain a degree of order in the class room.

Another problem involves the mental approach of students to learning. They have not been socialized at home or by society to understand they come to school to learn, that the teacher must be left to teaching and not acting as a disciplinarian.

Schools are overcrowded. Federal, state and local governments fail to provide adequate funding. Classes are too large.

School spending is stagnant. Thirty four States are contributing less today per student than prior to 2008.

The present system sends graduates into the working world ill equipped to compete. Half of high school graduating seniors are not ready for the real world. They have not mastered math or reading. Yet they are graduated because society today demands they not be held back. Move minorities and poor whites through school to graduation.

If they are not ready for high school graduation, they are not ready for college either. They have an increased chance of becoming college drop outs

Michael Snyder is one of the finest investigative reporters in the United States. He recently did a guest post for Blacklisted News. The article, How Extremely Stupid America Has Become: Depressing Survey Results Show. Much of what immediately follows has been garnered from Snyder’s article.

The United States has become a “dumbed down society.” 1950s and 1960s persons of average mentality are mental giants compared to those of average intellect today.

Why? One survey claims the following.

Criminals in some areas of the United States are paid today not to shoot or kill people. $1,000 a month. Washington, DC is in the process of adopting such a program. $500,000 a year is being set aside to finance it.

The highest paid public employee in most States is a football coach.

Few read books anymore. The average American spends 302 minutes (roughly 5 hours) each day watching television.

Seventy five percent of young adults cannot find Israel on a map. Yet know where to find smut on the internet.

Ten percent of college graduates think Judge Judy is on the U.S. Supreme Court.

More than 25 percent did not know FDR was President during World War II.

Another survey found the following.

Newsweek did a study several years ago. One thousand U.S. citizens were asked to answer questions taken from the Official Citizenship Test of the United States.

Twenty nine percent could not name the Vice-President. Seventy three percent could not say why the U.S. fought the Cold War. Forty three percent were unable to define the Bill of Rights. Six percent could not circle Independence Day on a calendar.

An Educational Testing Service study revealed the following. The study included 22 industrialized nations.

Americans born after 1980 lagged behind their peers in most of the 22 countries. Americans were falling behind in early educational years and at the college level.

Young adults in Japan, Finland and the Netherlands with high school degrees scored on a par with American millenniums holding four year college degrees.

Of the 22 countries composing the study, the United States came in dead last in tech proficiency and numeracy proficiency. Third from last in literacy proficiency.

Snyder’s reasons why the preceding has occurred is that the United States become a “stupid nation.” He describes it as the “dumb – ification” of the American brain.

One reason is that college courses have been “dumbed down.” Even the most challenging.

Malcolm X said, “Just because you have colleges and a university doesn’t mean you have education.”

Today’s college students and college courses prove Malcolm X’s point.

Thirty five percent spend 5 or less hours a week studying alone. Fifty percent have never taken a class where they wrote more than 20 pages. Thirty two percent never read more than 40 pages a week.

College curriculums today contain courses such as What If Harry Potter Is Real, Lady Gaza and the Sociology of Fame, and How To Watch Television. Basket weaving 101 type courses.

Most college students cannot put two sentences together. They are not challenged. The quality of education received incredibly poor.

Move being challenged aside. Many college students do not obtain degrees within the customary four years. it is not money. It is pure laziness. Thirty six percent of full time students take six years to obtain a four year degree.

I have some personal observations/opinions to share. My experiences have included sitting on University boards, chairing national university fund raising drives, etc.

The college/university experience is screwed up. Colleges/universities are run like corporations. The bottom line, money is more important than the quality of the student being graduated.

Over the years, I have seen high course grades easier to obtain. Are the students of today smarter than those of yesterday? Of course not. However, the educations/degrees received are more costly.

Academic hierarchy decided years ago that parents were entitled to good grades for their children since the parents were generally paying the cost of the education. Better grades they got! An A today many times is the B or C of yesterday.

One function of a Chancellor or President is to build. Newer and bigger campus structures. Regardless of whether the anticipated number of students several years later would increase thereby requiring the new structure. New buildings represent success in the academic world.

College professors are overpaid. Most teach two or three hour courses. That means six or nine hours a week teaching. Not bad for a $100,000 plus a year salary. Of course, these professors will tell you in defense that they actually work 40 plus hours a week. They must be available for their students, they write books, etc. I do not buy it. Plumb .Few hours for big money.

Constructing buildings not needed and paying salaries out of whack for the number of hours worked are two reasons a college education costs what it does today. The same college education that is turning out poorly prepared persons for the marketplace.

Government does not have its head screwed on correctly. Whether federal or state. Republicans at the Presidential and Congressional levels always want to do away with the Department of Education. They say the States can do it better. Actually, they want to free up education dollars from the budget for other budget items. Wars, for example.

The States cannot afford to pay education costs. They do not have the money.

Amazing. No one wants to bear the burden of educating our children.

Proving once again, every area of our society is screwed up!

The bottom line is that if we do not improve the United States’ educational process, we will not be numero uno in the world in anything. We may not be already. We may only think we are.

One comment on “WHEN EDUCATION FAILS, A NATION FAILS

  1. Hi Lou,

    I’m reading this late but felt I had to say something. We are not #1 at much of anything. Education is not the only reason. Too many people think they should get something for nothing… too many think they should be paid high wages for very little work and won’t work hard for it.

    We have become a welfare state with handouts for too many who won’t work for it. We have too many liberals that are more than willing to pay for it with my and your dollars.

    As long as these attitudes continue up and down the chain, we won’t be #1 at much of anything.

    What’s the fix? I don’t know. How do you change an entire culture that has evolved from being able to put a man on the moon to one that expects something for nothing. We expect an educated culture for nothing… we expect high wages for nothing.

    As for me… I’m moving to Key West where I can do nothing and expect exactly that in return. Well maybe I can get a frozen concoction to help me hang on for a reasonable price.

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