Re: [mythsoc] no critical thinking in the schools, please
- In a message dated 03/23/2000 4:38:57 AM Pacific Standard Time,
<< So I'm wondering if there isn't an inherent block to learning
critical thinking in the schools, AND, since I have two small children in
house, how I can prevent them from following in my footsteps.. >>
WARNING: rant follows that I wish were fantasy but it isn't:
This is somewhat off-topic, but I can't resist.
Yes, schools are structured in such a way as to prevent critical thinking as
much as human design can do so while still pretending to be free. I believe
this is deliberate. The purpose of our public schools, at least in America,
is not to produce people who can think critically and independently, but to
produce cogs that will fit into the industrial/economic machine with a
minimum of stress and jarring. That is why schools are so regimented and
lockstep, why they rely almost entirely on quantifiable standardized tests to
measure assimilation (as in "interchangeable parts"), and why the main, and
usually the only, reason given for getting a good education is "to compete in
today's job market" or some similar phrase. I don't remember the last time I
read anyone saying that education is an end in itself, or has value
independent of economics.That's all educational leaders think education is
for. I'm surprised it has taken this long for the school uniform bandwagon to
There is also the American cultural bias against intelligence (very uncool),
but schools have contributed to it as much as they have suffered from it.
Sure, they talk a good game about creativity and such, but try to be creative
outside approved (narrow) boundaries and see how fast you get stepped on.
To suggest an answer to your second question, a good private school will
probably do less damage than the public school. Home schooling, if you can
manage it, would probably be even better. Good luck.
(Still bitter, but with good reason)