I wholeheartedly believe that the greatest gift someone can give you is knowledge. The more quality and comprehensive the knowledge the more valuable to be utilized, pursued, or possessed. Knowledge is the game-changer that launches better opportunities in life and the expectation that some specific comprehensions and reasonings are elevated to accomplish more in life in accordance with that Knowledge. With that said, what is the substance, and what determines the ideology or method of delivery of Education and not knowledge? How do we determine what is really taught along with how and why?
First, let us examine the primary stated definition of and purpose for education to better frame what we have been conditionally exposed to with the currently accepted educational system and criteria of educational standards. Education is defined as the process of facilitating learning, or the acquisition of knowledge, skills, values, beliefs, and habits according to Wikipedia’s definition. Horace Mann the former Massachusetts Secretary of Education is primarily regarded as the father of education in the United States who initiated a system of professional teachers to teach an organized curriculum of basic content. A basic level of literacy and inculcation of common public ideas and beliefs that are deemed standard was the goal. In other words, to develop the mind with a specific intent to meet the standards set forth. Education originally was for boys and with bible study to tame their spirits.
Etymology is the study of words as they have changed over time with a primary focus on their roots or origin as they were derived from words that convey their true initial meaning. The etymology of education is “Educare” which can be translated to bring up or raise as well as in animals it refers to training them. The etymology of inculcation which can further be broken down but essentially means to “force upon, insist, stamp in, impress, tread down, trample on, tread on, or heel”.
Inculcation is achieved by the method of persistent and repeated information to implant, instill, or even admonish or punish if needed in order to force upon any ideas, theories, or behavior for indoctrination to acceptance of it. To further this intent homework was initially given as a punishment to break resistance to learning acceptance and not to enhance learning. Then you can be assessed or “graded” to measure your predictability to assimilate to norms and meet required standards. Consider the source words and stated intent compare to the stated definition of brainwash which is defined as to make someone adopt radically different beliefs by using systematic and often forcible pressure. It is the human mind being altered or controlled by certain psychological techniques. Let us not forget that corporal punishment in the form of paddling or swats was encouraged for compliance as well.
The use of developmental psychology at the earliest of ages increases the efficiency and acceptance of this intent and influence. It would be fair to say that this initiation takes place at the earliest age for maximum impact and efficiency. This method of educational conditioning is passed down from generation to generation influencing the surrendered blank slate (you) for inscription according to the prevailing thoughts and conditions at the time chosen to be tolerated and conformed to. It becomes traditionally accepted control and training which bends someone’s independence to a desired group’s agenda, determination, and many times personal opinions which are being imposed.
A good percentage of a youth’s time is spent not under the direct line of sight or teachings of their parents but being entrusted to a societal design that appoints a surrogate who is directly or indirectly forming a child’s reality and capabilities under the trust that you invested in them. This trust is then by virtue transferred to the child and reinforced by siblings, peers, status, and society. To further that educational goal social norms as cultural learnings are taught through structural socialization and allegiances. An ideology of a perceived consensus that is not self- determined but assigned primarily through opportunities presented or opportunities denied. The reasoning and judgment associated with this thought pattern are to create a root default behavior creating the assigned programed perspective of achievement or limitations. Well, maybe your limitations are greatly influenced outside yourself and predetermined by these outer influences by design. Maybe, I’m just putting it on the table.
You to some degree become what you hear repeatedly and sometimes the loudest from some of the early ages while your highly impressionable before things really form. That is why it is better to place it there as opposed to removing something however embedded. Instead of replacing it with yours, just placing it there first is the objective. The age of initiation gets younger as time passes and starts now from daycare, preschool, and kindergarten. Education in part began as a social experiment and on some not so coincidental levels the belief that education is meant to be a regimen of focused processes that implant the expectations of an established social standard, a perspective. Excelling at achieving distinguished personal absorption of that social standard is the method of measurement within the educational/social structure which is achievement and accumulation based.
Standardized testing was not designed to include but to discourage and exclude in theory. Training or conditioning people for continuity of compliance despite the core acceptance in their mind. That creates that learned tradition seemingly forever adhered to and defended instead of serious re-examination and adaptation, even overhaul periodically. Standardizing creates the standard that restricts you from consideration or participation for the less knowledgeable and most disadvantaged. This assures the efficiency of the social structure and the manual or menial task supply and demand.
The swindle of opportunities missed is unknown but if standardized testing is the tide that raises all boats then surely the criteria and historical accuracy of the teachings of education should yield the benefits that reflect this. The educational teachings often contradict historical accuracy and are suspect. The focus on these inaccuracies are distractions from the much-needed practical exposure to knowledge of post-schooling preparedness, acquisition of knowledge should not be secondary. The criteria should reflect preparedness for decisions regarding things that are generally learned later in life after making some mistakes of not knowing. The tools to sustain you in life. Investments, financial literacy, entrepreneurship, etc. to more closely reflect their importance in life.
If you have 12 years of seven or eight hours a day, the time available and resources devoted should reflect a more knowledgeable labor force according to the origins of what the educational system represents itself to be. So you see knowledge apparently is not the priority but conformity to even undesirable standards and enough “educational” training to create a functional labor force but not a knowledgeable labor force. The poverty of opportunity is assured with your consent to lack of knowledge and the “educational” breeding. Schooling plants the seeds to become a producer or a consumer, labor, or management remembering that it takes more laborers than managers.
The diminishing returns resolution lies in the overall structure, content, and criteria that should be analyzed and modernized. A pause and shift have occurred where the unheard of has happened and now would be an opportune time to weigh the balances of sticking with the current system of education after evaluating your observations of its effectiveness and results. The harsh reality is there for all to see by the way the lowest-paid worker just so happens to be the most essential worker and especially at this heightened time of danger. Powerless against the decisions that are made that affect you and in jeopardy of being penalized for any resistance. The current situation really exposes many societal acceptances that now cannot be hidden behind the commonly accepted purposes and intent given, even extending up to the collegiate educational level and college athletics. Those needed for labor are conditioned to offers no resistance, are often knowledge deficient, and without pull or support often rewarded by some Pavlov incentive or dependency filled is what the educational system is structured to produce in order to promote societal perspectives that invite exploitation.
Moral of the story < Knowledge and education are not interchangeable and are with quite different meanings and implications. Knowledge expands your known possibilities and wisdom while education is a measure of your level of absorption and compliance. The freedom of choice and randomness of fate are an illusion when the choices and opportunities have already been chosen for you to select from. The choices are limited and controlled but there is a choice.
So now we can rethink the educational system based on real purpose, player hating discouragement, or we can at least volunteer instead of being tricked. Step right up, next in line. Expecting a different outcome may be unrealistic so it is important to play them while they are playing you and maximize your knowledge to increase your ability to recognize, create, or benefit from an opportunity. Opportunity depends on awareness, awareness is based on knowledge, and knowledge brings wisdom. Basically, you pay for what you don’t know and put yourself at the mercy of predators and that is the price of not knowing. Many things may attempt to stop you, but do not let lack of knowledge in not knowing if be one.
Thurston K. Atlas
Creating A Buzz