Education I Support Most Of What Robinson Essay

Education I support most of what Robinson is saying that video. The core of his argument is that the education system geared more towards creating workers than thinkers, and that does seem to be the natural outcome of a lot of decisions in the education system. Schools that remove arts, physical education and other such classes to focus on standardized test subjects are being economically motivated to churn out workers. This occurs because it is easier for the education system to measure success with standardized tests, and measuring success represents a way for politicians and those running the education to demonstrate to parents and taxpayers -- stakeholders -- that they are doing their jobs running the education system.

This does call into question the idea of universal public education. On principle, universal public education is a tremendously powerful tool for domestic policy. An educated populace is a successful populace, especially in the Information Age, but this has always been the case. If a nation wants to be competitive in the world, it needs to education its people, and it needs to spend a lot of money to do that. A purely private system where education is not accessible to all is correlated with the inability to progress economically -- you can see this today all across the developing world.

However, Theodoulou's points about the way that public policy is created and implemented raise some concerns about the use of government to provide education. This is particularly the case in light of what Robinson describes. Public policy is developed when issues are identified, stakeholders analyzed, compromises made and the education system today reflects these wide-ranging influences. Certainly corporate interests have a seat at the table. They know that they can import high-end workers from anywhere in the world, or even outsource, but they also need a pliable populace. Over time, this begins to manifest in standardized testing and a focus away from


The latter occurs not by strict design, but through the focus on specialization that drives the school system to only focus on specific subjects and specific ways of thinking.
Robinson is correct in that this approach shortchanges students and leads to further problems. The idea that a distracted child should be attributed a fictional ailment and pumped full of drugs is absurd, yet it has become commonplace in the U.S. education system because distracted children in the classroom reduce scores on standardized tests. The priorities of the system that drive policy are oriented to the needs of business and the needs of those within the education system itself.

Parents unfortunately are culpable as well. In America's society -- so addicted to achievement -- parents equate measurables with desirables, leading them to support the way that the system is constructed. They must, after all, put their kids on drugs, so there is a level of active support. The one stakeholder who has no say in the education is the student. Robinson is right -- society benefits from a surplus of ideas, of thought, and of capabilities. The problem is that the prevailing view today is that these things are not congruent with the needs of the other stakeholders.

This begs the question who should be responsible for education. In a world where two parents must work in order just to provide the basics of life to their family -- having long-since outsourced critical tasks like food production -- the individual is in no position to provide any more than supplemental education. While there is a role for the parent, it is not as the primary provider of education unless the whole of society is to be restructured. This leaves government. A good argument for federal provision of education is that education is part of the long-run economic strategy of the nation, something that is generally the purview of the federal government. This bumps up against the fact that states also plan…

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