Monday, May 7, 2012

Why Education...?

Growing up in a country where free education is available for students between the ages of 5-18, I am perplexed at the notion that in many instances education is not valued by students in America as much as schooling is valued by students in other countries. The premise of this blog stems from a few things I've observed as an Academic Professional and a few things I've observed during my current Doctoral Studies in Educational Leadership. 

"I don't need to know this...!!!  Why (are) we learning this...???  I can't see how this is going to help me in the future," are some of the responses I get when I am encouraging students to value the benefits of being educated -- especially in an era of high stakes assessment exams and the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act.   

There's no secret that NCLB has been the focal point of this country's K-12 educational system for the past decade ... and although I grasp and applaud the ideology associated with NCLB, I find the methodology to be faulty in some capacity ... but because I will refrain from my soap-box about the things I find troublesome about NCLB, I will note that literature has shown that NCLB has had a positive impact (depending on which lens one is looking out of) on the students this legislation was drafted for.

In noting the aforementioned while speaking from my perspective as an adjunct professor and my time in today's urban high school settings, I must say the reality of my latter sentence is quite challenging to believe, but that's for another blog.  In short I find a good portion of today's secondary educated students lacking a variety of soft skills and academic aptitude, but more importantly, I find them lacking the zeal and fervor to go beyond status quo.  Needless to say this is problematic for a number a reasons, but more or so due to the fact that without some type of post-secondary education these students will become another statistic to what society predicts for individuals who have no skill sets and aspirations of positively contributing to their community.

One of my pedagogy platforms revolves around 21st Century Learning and assuring I am concurrently socially and academically enriching students while also ensuring I am educating them as opposed to teaching them (recognize the difference between the two).  I tell my students all the time that because we are living in a world that is interdependent and constantly evolving, individual success is heavily dependent on one's mental capacity, and his ability to think critically.

In theory, the reality is if one is to ask "Why Education", I would simply say, "Knowledge is an intangible source of income that is immeasurably PROFITABLE!"

As always, stay inspired..!!