Friday, October 11, 2013

Blog 5: Schools Go Backwards

In England, the educational system is full of flaws. According to a recent report, current graduates are worse at mathematics and literature than their grandparents. The statistics that prove this come from a study of 166000 out of 24 countries, 9000 of those from England and Northern Ireland. The study showed that "England was the only country where the oldest age group studied (55-65) had a higher proficiency in literacy and numeracy than the youngest (16-24)" and was the 22nd country out of the 24 for the reading skills and 21st for mathematics (Schools go backwards). Although there had been a system in place that was pouring money into the education system and attempting to correct the problems, no real change was shown. Although the younger generation had more qualifications for jobs, their knowledge and skills paled in comparison to the older generation. Another shocking statistic is that a quarter of the adults have the math skills of a ten-year-old (Schools go backwards). In the 1960s and 1970s, England produced 8% of the world's most highly skilled workers, but that rate was dropped to 4% and the decline is expected to continue at a normal rate (Schools go backwards). A solution suggested was to make courses and exams more difficult in attempt to lessen the gap in education standards. It is also being said that these attempts to correct the education system in England should come from a united front, not one based on a political platform.

This article goes to show that education is not the great equalizer that everyone makes it out to be. Not only is education seriously flawed in this country, but this also shows that modern technology and techniques are not superior to older education ideas and practices, as seen by the younger generation doing poorly when compared to the older generation. The UN is attempting to spread education worldwide and set up schools for those who are less fortunate, but it is important to realize that education will not be equal, especially when there are such gross differences in learning and the capabilities of younger generations versus older generations. The world sees modern technology and ideas as the solution, a way to make everyone more intelligent, but the situation in England's current education system shows that this is just not the case. Education must be fixed on a united front, with everyone working toward the common goal of teaching material in a way that is challenging, but still understandable. People learn at different levels and no one will ever be on the same page in regards to education, but it would be a step in the right direction.

Tara Cook
October 11, 2013
12:19 p.m.

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