Is School Even Needed?

Discussion in 'THREAD ARCHIVES' started by ElBell, May 4, 2015.

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  1. Ah, the internet, such a fun place. However, it isn't always fun and games, rather it be a serious place or dangerous place. It can really be all those things, and to me, the internet has essentially taken away a need for the education system prior to college level. Now before anyone shouts at me, I am going to share my reasoning for these thoughts along with probably some information about myself to explain how I, a student age person in the United States, can honestly believe we do not need grade schools.

    Obviously we can google answers for almost anything now a days with how the internet has grown. How to do math problems, looking up poems and stories from famous writers past, even looking up everything we'd ever need to know about past events like wars or natural disasters. Now with that said, what do we need grade school for? What benefit does it now hold?

    All school does beyond the internet (in my opinion) as a tool is force the kids with no learning desire to learn, and in the end, it doesn't help them all that much. Note me saying this is based on PERSONAL experience; I've only ever met kids more averted to work after forced school than ones who accept work as a reality. This even happened to me as well, until I was able to transfer to a highly flexible online school. And yes, this does mean I learn with the internet a hell of a lot.

    Additionally, those who DO what to learn will be the ones prepared for life better. They'll know what is needed and avoid what is not, especially helpful to learn what they need for a career, and if something comes up they don't know or understand? They will have the searching skills to find what is needed in a matter of minutes, not over the course of a months long course full of other, probably useless things.

    Another thing people seem so stuck on with schools is socialization. But, that is what sports, events, and going out to do things does! And unlike school, if you meet someone on a sports team you don't like, it's much easier to avoid them. Bullying is a smaller issue as well, and even better is that from a very young age the student would interact with all ages, not just peers. Less risk of negative interactions like bullying, and ability to converse with all people? Sounds damn good to me.

    I have way more I could say as to why pre-college level school is seemingly useless to me in modern day, but I think I have said more than enough to start off a thread. So, go ahead and share your thoughts or ask me questions directly if you wanna get at it with me. Whatever you like, but I do hope this can start up some great discussions for everyone to partake in!
  2. I'm not going to shout at you, but I'm going to pretty much tell you why your argument is flawed from the perspective of someone who has been through grade school.

    First of all, there is a lot of stuff you simply can't learn from the Internet. Sorry, I hate to burst your bubble. Try learning how to do high level calculus and trigonometry with YouTube videos alone, and you'll see my point.

    I didn't even know that derivatives existed before my calculus teacher showed me them. Also, how are you supposed to learn basic grammar, sentence structure, and MLA writing style? You can't tell me that the average 10 year old has enough discipline to force himself to sit in front of a monitor 7+ hours a day to learn all of these essential skills that keep our society afloat.

    Second off, how do you think you could possibly survive in college without a grade school education? College isn't there to teach you basics.

    College exists to help people who already have a firm mastery of the basics and to help them reach a higher level. But if you're telling me that all problems can be solved by the Internet, you're going to be in for a shock when your professor gives you a math test and tells you no phones or calculators.

    Thirdly, grade school DOES give you social skills, though not just in obvious ways. While it teaches you how to interact with people you like, it more importantly teaches you how to deal with people you don't. That includes teachers, since I don't care what profession you're in, unless you're an entrepreneur, you're going to have to deal with a crummy boss sooner or later. You don't start jobs at the top of the ladder, you have to work your way up. You think bullying goes away when you graduate? Partly, yeah. But you're always going to have to deal with jackasses that think they can step all over you no matter what you do or where you go. You say it's a negative interaction, but honestly that's life. That's the ugly part of human nature and if you deny that you're denying the whole damn thing. It's vital to experience that.

    I could go on and on forever, but I'm going to go on a bit with an old man rant here. THIS is the problem with the youth these days. Instead of looking at a mountain and saying "I'm gonna climb that", kids complain about why isn't there an elevator.

    The air you breathe isn't free. There are two types of people in the world. People that produce goods or provide a service, and people that don't. One gets to live in a house, the other usually ends up sleeping underneath freeways. If everyone was to say "You know what, education is useless because we already have the Internet and machines to do this stuff for us", there would be no mathematicians. No inventors. We'd just have the same old crap our great granddaddy's had, and eventually a hardier nation would kick the US's ass so hard it'd fly across the Atlantic and back into Papa China/Russia/(Insert hostile country here)'s lap.

    You know what you get to do when you decide school is for fools? You get to work in gas stations and buy groceries with food stamps while everyone else gets to go to college and live in nice big houses with bigger garages. I'm not saying I loved every minute of high school, but I knew it was important and I hustled so I could go to a nice university afterward. I've been in the hood. I know what a place looks like when half the adults can barely sign their damn name on their checks. Mandatory nationwide education is probably the best thing the government ever did.

    If you seriously don't want to go to school, drop out.

    Seriously. Drop out, run away from home, and try to live off the Internet. Feel free to let me know how that goes if you still have a cell phone or laptop to type on.
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  3. The Internet is a tool of vast and endless knowledge, but it's up to the user how effective that is. You can sit somebody down at a computer and tell them that they can learn anything they want, but they're still missing the fundamentals and how many are going to force themselves to learn essential skills? If it were up to me, I would have never done math class, but I'd be an idiot for thinking that I don't use math all the time in real-life. Hell, how many people know what every function on their computer or cell phone does or even uses it? It's the same idea. You can learn enough on your own to make it work, but people need a proper education to make the most out of the resources that are available. Having a teacher teach you a subject is like having a supervisor train you how to do a job; you might be able to figure it out on your own, but you probably won't do a satisfactory job and you'll almost certainly overlook something critical.

    A huge thing school is about is it gets kids used to structure and respecting authority and being accountable for their actions, which believe it or not, are things you absolutely need to succeed in the professional world. In school, you do shit because you're told to and you try to get good grades so you pass and don't have to repeat it. It also forces you to work with people you don't like or don't associate with, and not always your friends. When you hit the work force, you're working to put food on your table, to make rent, and so on. You don't get to pick who you work with, so you need to know how to cooperate with conflicting personalities. School's a very good primer for that.

    It also gets you into understanding what's needed for post-secondary. The proposal that you can start formal education starting with college is absurd; I went from being an honour roll student with a 95% grade average in grade 12 to a mid 60s-70s student in college because it was such a hard adjustment (didn't help I was taking 2nd and 3rd year courses because I was doing a fast track course and ended up missing a lot of the prerequisite programs). I had to readjust my entire mentality towards school and my own work ethic to succeed in college; if I didn't have the 12 years of grade school preceding it, I would have failed miserably and probably given up on college entirely. Just like how when you're a kid you hate when mom forces you to eat vegetables, you did it anyways because it was healthy and it was the only way you were getting desert, you have to suffer through the tedious shit in school so you can appreciate the stuff you want to learn.

    Do I think that school is fine the way it is? No, it could use changes, and getting rid of final exams is a good place to start, but it's silly to think it's pointless and you don't school. Plus here's one of the biggest things about why school is important: It's where you make friends. Take it from a guy who's lived away from home for 3.5 years and has been a working professional all that time, it's incredibly hard to meet people outside of school, and unless you're doing an entry-level minimum wage job, you're rarely going to be working with people your age, if you even work with people on a regular basis. School's invaluable for really immersing you in a proper social structure and meeting people. You aren't going to get that staring at a computer all day.

    Besides, I pity the kid who never gets to go on field trips. That shit's awesome.
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  4. The logistics of forcing every household to get their child to take online courses alone are reason enough to create public education.

    Public education is also a medium with which to teach kids about social life. Try teaching that online.
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  5. Normally I'd go on for an hour about this but I'm feeling too lazy no matter how strong my opinion on education is.

    I think that yes, we do need schools or at least some form of formal education. Yes, you have the internet and libraries and things are pretty accessible, but there's lots of things you don't get to learn without the experience of school/mentoring, and lots of little gaps that teachers fill in. And, schools are a social environment, and as shitty as most schools are, I think some aspects of the idea of public education is great. I just think it needs extreme modification to be ideal. And besides, formal education can take kids who don't want to learn (I was in this group as a kid) and instill in them a love of learning. Not everyone does, but I hated school has a kid, I hated learning, but a few really great teachers later and an introduction into new topics of study and I fell in love, no matter how much I hated the school itself.

    So I think the structure of school/mentoring is hugely important, especially in growth. But I still hate the school system in most any country. It needs massive change and adjustment to be proper. I hate how most educational systems just make cookie-cutter kids... >.<
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  6. Since we haven't reached that level of technology explained in the video, I'd say yes, school is still needed.

    Moreover, school provides the basis for social learning and acquiring skills to interact with people on the whole. While we are moving towards a society that can operate without face-to-face contact, it is still a part of our lives and is necessary to nurture.
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  7. School needs some work. This common core stuff really sucks. It's just teaching them enough to get them through the weeks of testing they're doing now.

    Common sense classes would be good too. Even teachers I talk with daily agree there's no fun to be had in teaching anymore when kids aren't taught critical thinking.
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  8. I'm pretty sure we'd have significantly less doctors, scientists, vets and all the rest if we relied on the internet for education. We'd definitely be missing out on people who are going to take our tech to the next level if we relied on the stuff we have already.

    For sure school needs some (so many) changes and many need to open up to individuality more, but yes, we do need it. It gives kids motivation to find their passions and help them experience their subjects from all sorts of angles.

    I know for sure I wouldn't of found my passion for science if I didn't learn about the solar system in my elementary school.

    Not gonna say I like school though, who does lmao
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  9. I'm horribly sleep deprived, so if this post seems rather scattered that'd be why. In short, yes, school is still a needed thing.

    A lot of the early school material is great for kids to learn. Reading, handwriting, basic math, etc. All of that is solid school learning that is still good to have nowadays. Most kids don't have family situations where they can reasonably have a parent available all the time to teach them all that stuff. Getting those basics learned is a good reason to keep at least elementary school around, imo.

    Speaking of the lack of parental availability, school also acts as a sort of tax subsidized daycare for kids of all ages, even through high school. Even if the actual things being taught in those later years are basically useless, it's good to have somewhere for the lil shits to go so they're not sitting at home just watching Netflix or out with their pals getting into trouble. If you were to just totally nix the whole idea of schools, what would low income families that can't afford to have a stay at home parent do with their elementary school aged children? They almost certainly couldn't afford to pay for a normal daycare, so would they just leave the small children alone in the house all day while they work? I doubt many parents would be happy about leaving even their teenage children home to manage themselves all day every day. On a purely practical and logistical level, schools are extremely useful institutions, because they can ensure that kids are safe and supervised for most of the day when the parent is at work.

    Substituting school with the internet would only really work for kids who are actually motivated to learn, and therein lies the biggest problem with the idea of not having schools. The graduation rates of fully online schools programs is lower across the board than for traditional schools, and I wager that it's because keeping oneself on task to study and do work is much harder when you've just got text on a screen guiding you rather than a face to face professor that you see at regular intervals. We already have pretty shitty high school and college graduation rates in the US, and getting rid of the ole brick and mortar schools would make things exponentially worse. After a couple generations we'd end up with a massive lack of skilled labor because there would be so few people with the motivation or qualification to get into college, much less into the higher requirement specialty things like engineering programs or medical school.

    For all their faults, schools do a lot to teach people things that are useful to know and skills that are useful to have. Most parents are absolutely awful at inspiring their children to be creative, or challenging them to help develop critical thinking, or enabling them to discover their interests. Schools are perfect environments for all those things and more. The reasonable answer is to overhaul and fix schools, not to just do away with them. Wanting to do away with schools because they have some problems in the modern day is like saying "ugh the tax system sucks, the richest people end up paying far less than the middle class and lots of huge corporations get kickbacks rather than paying taxes, let's just abolish the whole system." In both the school thing and the tax example, the "cure" of removal would be far worse than just leaving the shitty system in place would be.

    Reform is the answer, not removal.
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  10. I don't have time time to read and reply to you all right now as much as I want, but you're missing some of my points or not quite taking them as I intended them.

    My point is, we don't all need so much crazy advance stuff. It's not generally practical to know so much math, or to know all about the wars over history in incredible detail like we're expected to. Yes, basics like adding and subtracting and graphing help, and it's important to learn some basic biology, but not even my doctor mother needed all the math she was forced into learning. All her social studies learning is useless too, wasted time and energy.

    I agree on needing reform, badly so. That's another debate I plan to later post though, so keep that topic lighter for now. My points only stand with the way school is now, particularly the ones I've been involved with. If it was fixed up a bit more, well a lot more, I know I would feel very different about it all. And of course, your school experiences can be drastically different.

    I also find it fascinating you all assumed online courses, as organized classes. I am talking about 100% free learning after incredibly basic things. No classes whatsoever. More conditioning from the system I would guess... But my point is that then it comes down much more to a motivation level, and yes, we still would get doctors and lawyers from that. But only ones who actually gave a damn to get there.
  11. You sir, are being flat out rude here. Don't you dare take it that way and attack a generation over a debate like this. That is not what this is to discuss, and you assumed a hell of a lot off my single post. I'm not dropping out, I'm not saying that's my plan, don't for one moment get sassy over that. That is not right one bit. I could say a truckload lot more, but I'm not gonna flame at you no matter how shitty I think the end of this post was.
  12. I personally think some things should just be taught and enforced.

    Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.
    George Santayana
  13. The subsidized day care point is actually an excellent one I didn't even consider. Kudos.

    I also thought about how much physical fitness would start to slip if kids weren't forced to take gym in their formative years.

    I sincerely hope you aren't insinuating we're all defending schools merely because we were all conditioned to think they're the only way. If so, that's preposterous and frankly kind of offensive.

    And I doubt you'd get doctors or lawyers from simply self-teaching. I would not want a man cutting into me for a surgery after his only credentials are "I read it on Buzzfeed once."
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  14. Thing is, unless you've got an unprecedented system of choosing what kids are going to become the day they're born, then learning broad and advanced level subjects prior to college is necessary, and is arguably beneficial even after they've "decided" what profession they're going to pursue. You don't know if they're going to change their mind in the middle of college, or even in the middle of their lives. Having a solid groundwork on all subjects gives you a baseline with which to transition into more consistently advanced topics whenever you want to.

    No. We wouldn't. Certainly not the amount of doctors or lawyers we need, that's for sure. The motivation for people to learn even in an forced learning environment today is negligible. You honestly think anywhere near the majority of young kids would motivate themselves to study enough on their own accord through the internet?
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  15. You know what, you might be right that forcing kids to do stuff makes them like it less, but you know what? That's life. You know what I learned in high school? Even if the material felt completely useless to know, it was still important to go through with it all. Why? Because it's all basically training wheels for life. School teaches discipline, or at least it attempts to. And the kids that just say "fuck it, I'll do what I want cuz this shit ain't important anyway" are only denying themselves a chance to get used to what having a job will inevitably be like. You'll have a schedule and things that need to get done at a certain time. Even if you don't like what's being taught in school or feel like the content won't help you in the real world, it doesn't matter, because the act of doing the work itself will help you in the real world.

    Speaking of discipline, here's another thing that this let's-use-Google-for-everything idea lacks -- even if we assume that the Internet can teach you everything that traditional schooling can (and that's a big assumption), there's still nothing to tell kids to go out and learn it all. You honestly think that a kid will just teach him/herself all the essential shit s/he needs to know for a solid 7 hours just sitting in front of a computer? Fuck no. Most kids, even if they do have an interest in learning certain things, just won't discipline themselves enough to learn things with the same level of time efficiency that a real school can provide. They might look up some things that interest them, but then they'll leave and do other, more entertaining things soon enough. Plus, people procrastinate. If you're a ten-year-old kid with no real concept of what the future will hold, what in the world is going to motivate you to go out and prepare yourself for a job? Not much, that's what. You'll probably do almost nothing for years before you try to sit the fuck down and prepare yourself for college -- and even then, you'll most likely be severely underprepared.

    If you're referring to all-online schools, I'd still call that school. Regardless of what disadvantages that may-or-may-not have compared to traditional schools, there's still guidance -- there's still a schedule of what has to be learned and when. That's a thousand times better than letting kids learn things at whatever pace they so choose, because that just won't work.

    I mean, have you been to the Internet? It's kind of the best place ever to get distracted and lose yourself on YouTube for several hours until you realize you've completely forgotten what it was you were looking for in the first place. Not the best place to trust that kids -- who may-or-may-not have any real desire to learn things and, even if they do, will have hardly any concept of the future and therefore feel very little urgency to prepare for it -- will be able to discipline themselves and learn everything that they need to know.
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  16. I think you would be shocked at how much information isn't available on the internet.
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  17. school curriculums put all that wonderful learning into a systematic model

    i love having the answers just put there for me to grab in a logical manner

    then i don't have to waste time looking up terminology, background info, etc on my own and figuring it all out piecemeal

    because that's irritatingly, mind-numbingly boring and time-consuming

    then again, i'm the guy who got serial A's in elementary school, high school, and college without doing much more than paying attention and studying 1-2 hrs a night to keep up or get ahead on the reading/homework

    because doing that meant i saved myself 10 hours of cramming later

    and therefore i got to go play video games with the rest of the day

    and didnt have to worry about finals

    because i already learned everytihing well ahead of time, and i was just reviewing it to keep it fresh for the test

    you silly students. you don't know how to game the school system.
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  18. Yeah, that's another good point.

    Even if a kid does have the necessary discipline to start teaching themselves everything they need to know starting at age 5 or 6 (which is just... lol), it's incredibly difficult to even figure out where to start, much less how to put all the information together in a way that makes sense.
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  19. Trust this man. He's a doctor.
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