The Education System is Outdated

Sophie Stoddart, Reporter

If students had more control over their methods of learning and teachers had more control over the material they teach, both parties would be more inspired and motivated to do their jobs. Education is key to living a long, prosperous, and successful life. Every person comes into the world with the desire to learn, engage, and explore. However, most students dread the idea of sitting in a classroom, listening to a lecture, or experiencing the average school day. Every student needs to take into account that, for the most part, everything they learn in school is vital information. On the contrary,  it is difficult to maintain that hunger for knowledge when they have no say in how they learn a subject, how the information is presented, and how students demonstrate their understanding of the content. School, for countless kids, has been turned into an experience they need to endure, instead of enjoying the fact that they have the opportunity to become a knowledgeable and well-rounded individual. 

Many students are left with the questions, “Why are we learning this?” and “Why is this important?”. This is because they are unable to see the connection to the world beyond the classroom, making them less driven to attempt to grasp the concepts of the content they are learning. These questions must be suppressed in order for a student to do well, since they still have to continue studying to maintain their grades even if they cannot understand the material’s importance. Furthermore, students who have difficulties understanding the importance of the material they are taught may only focus on getting a good grade in the class by cramming for tests and memorizing information, which barely scratches the surface of the content.

In addition, students are not taught multiple sides of history, like the stories of socially oppressed groups, which many students can identify with. They are only taught information that the organizations responsible for creating the curriculum feel is important enough, disregarding the fact that all history is indeed important. 

They are also often not fully taught how the government functions until senior year, because teachers are told not to include political discussions in class to prevent showing their bias and inciting heated debates. Mere surface-level knowledge about the government makes it harder for students to grasp bureaucratic concepts taught in history classes prior to twelfth grade. This is a good example showing that the rigid education system limits students’ understanding of the significance of their academic content, since many don’t realize that analyzing bureaucratic circumstances from the past can help them form educated political opinions and cast informed votes in the future.

If teachers could find their own ways to impartially teach younger students about the way different sections of government function, students could become more informed at an earlier age, and therefore be able to draw more connections between the past and the present government in subsequent history classes. There are teachers who want to give their students all of the resources and freedom they need to forge their own curiosity and paths of interest, but are hindered by a lack of support, and are limited by the law. According to Public School Review, many states are still issuing funding that is lower than it was before the Great Recession. This means fewer teachers, fewer programs, and less resources. 

As a student who is frustrated with the limitations of the education system, I can only imagine the burden teachers carry when creating their lessons. Teachers deserve to have more resources and control over what they teach, so they can be motivated to teach their curriculum. Students deserve to have inspired and motivated teachers, and be free to learn and present their understanding of class material in whichever manner works best for them. The world deserves more curious minds who are excited to receive knowledge and share it with others. It is those who are constantly present in classrooms, the students and the teachers, who should have control over the future of education and to maximize subsequent generations’ potential achievements.