The Failure of Education
America’s war on its children
If (fill in the blank) isn’t working out to your expectations, then all you have to do is throw more money at it. That’s the message we regularly receive from people who make their money from selling “education.” But, is it true? Of course not.
The American education system is an utter failure and has been for decades, and there is no more significant proof of that than observing today’s young adults. They have no academic skills beyond cheating on tests; they lack essential knowledge about our nation’s history or even their own states. They are unable to comprehend cause and effect relationships, and they cannot reason. If our education system is the doctor, then we’ve killed the patient.
Educationalist (a term I use in the most disparaging manner possible) Kate Barrington wants us to know about the American education system’s top fifteen failures. None of her “failures” represent the underlying problem of American schools, but here’s what she identified as her most significant concerns:
- Insufficient government funding
- Charter schools siphon away money from public schools
- Teachers aren’t making enough money
- Too many teachers are fired for political reasons
- There is too much bullying going on in schools
- Students are “too poor” to learn
- Schools are over-crowded
- Students are too anxious and hyper-active to learn
- Insufficient parental involvement
She never once mentioned political brainwashing imposed on every child in public schools, never said anything about the costly athletic programs that take away time and money from academic curricula, never mentioned the dismal results of “high stakes” testing, or the fact that students receive no training in civics education, are taught revisionist history, or that they are bored to the point of tears in the classroom.
Ms. Barrington didn’t say that our children cannot construct a proper sentence, much less a paragraph, or that an average first-year high school student can only read at the fifth-grade level and cannot perform algebraic computations or has no interest in the wonder of science.
She also never mentioned that the United States (federal and state expenditures) spends, on average, $800-billion on educational programs EACH YEAR. That figure approximates $15,000.00 annually for each child in elementary and secondary schools. Maybe we shouldn’t focus so much on what we spend on American education — perhaps we should be asking what we’re getting as a return on that investment. Are we getting smarter kids who, within a few years, are knocking them dead in the corporate structure, on Wall Street, as engineers, as scientists?
No — actually, American kids (including those graduating from college with a four-year degree) are mediocre compared to the rest of the civilized world. Forty years after the publication of A Nation at Risk, a ground-breaking report by the National Commission on Excellence, America’s kids are dumber than ever despite the doubling of our expenditures on education.
Constructing more schools does not equate to better education — it only means more children per year are less competitive globally. What other conclusions can a rational person make when more than two-thirds of the student population cannot demonstrate mastery in grade-level mathematics and science, reading, or even understanding the history of their own ancestors?
Here’s an interesting statistic: 85% of our nation’s high school graduates each year are unqualified to enter college as freshmen without substantial remediation.
According to the National Center for Educational Statistics, the average expenditure worldwide is around $9,800 per student annually. Around the world, then, nations who spend far less educating their children are producing young adults who can (and do) read, who can communicate well in writing, who understand complex mathematics, and are geared toward careers in science and engineering.
Equally important, we must address the question of whether America’s young adults are as well-adjusted psychologically as their “other world” cohorts. There does not appear to be any evidence to support such a claim. Considering high incidents of violence in schools and throughout local communities, the opposite seems right. America’s young adult is maladjusted, and if there is not a trend toward psychopathic abnormality, it certainly seems that way.
What, then, should we deduce? Should we conclude that in exchange for $800-billion annually, we are getting psychologically damaged young adults? As young adults, our children not only do not know who they are but also don’t care.
Our young adults do not understand that the rights they enjoy extend to every other citizen, as well — so supporting such notions that they must silence a citizen who has different views from their own — forcibly, if necessary — tells us that our education system has grown at least two (maybe three) generations of dangerously maladjusted human beings. Moreover, they are irrational in thinking that such behavior benefits a healthy society.
America is getting no bang for its buck. Rather than demanding more money (to waste), perhaps reduced spending is a better plan. Pay teachers less money, not more. Stop pretending that high school football programs are equal in importance to science and mathematics. Stop spending hundreds of millions of dollars on textbooks that facilitate revisionist brainwashing or communicate anti-white racial biases.
When compared to the children raised in third-world countries, our children are stupid, psychotic, and socially inept. Is this our return on our ever-increasing investment in the American education system? One notable scientist suggested, “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.” We attribute this quotation to Albert Einstein’s Parable of Quantum Insanity. Perhaps the educationalists should make a note of it.
Mustang also blogs at Fix Bayonets and Thoughts From Afar