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Kenji Gerhardt

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What is the goal of education?

I am currently a high school student facing a problem and a question has occurred to me as a result. Having always been in advanced math classes, this year is unique in that I have had to drop from the honors level course to the normal level course in order to preserve my grade so I can get into college later. Before bending my pride enough to follow through on this decision, a question popped into my head:

Why do I need to lower the level of my education and reduce my experience in a subject to be more appealing to higher level educational facilities?

I personally feel that the goal of education is just that: education. Grades should just be a stick to measure where more work needs to be done, not where final judgement should be placed. Students like myself should be encouraged to challenge themselves so that they aren't getting everything right, not drop to a level where they can always get the best grade.

Those are my thoughts, anyway. What do you think the goal of education should be and of it's current state in America?


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    Nov 3 2011: It is important to distinguish between education and school. One of the big problems in the US is how they are treated as non-distinct synonyms. While education should happen in schools, it should not be limited any more than art should be contained in a studio. The goal of schools should be to empower students to desire to educate themselves when they are not at school. The goal of education is to better the person so to better society.
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      Nov 3 2011: Thanks for bringing this up!

      Education is not synonym of school.
      While many think of the educational system as solely responsible for the learning process, the truth is education happens 24/7 weather in the hands of unequally skilled teachers, in the park, or hours at the Playstation.

      I am very interested in the connection between creativity and learning, and the role that we play as students, parents, teachers, curriculum developers, politicians and community members to affect that connection. It is clear to me that creative thinking and problem solving are key to the way the current generation will handle some of the most challenging issues humanity ever had in the next few years.

      From what I observed on the debate on creativity, some see the current educational systems as obsolete, others consider the lack of involvement of families, or the way assessment is done.

      As it becomes more evident that creativity is mostly absent in the learning process, the question we must face is, do we care enough to stop blaming "them" and becoming the change we want to see?

      Do we care enough to step out of our couches, roll up our sleeves, and make a difference?

      I am waiting for a response, the answer of the TEDsters will tell.
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        Nov 3 2011: I agree. Let's stop blaming "them" and blame me. Blame Drew!
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        Nov 3 2011: The quick answer is that I can tie any bad thing in the world back to something I did or did not do. I take full responsibility for all the ills of the world. The longer answer is a logical (and fun) argument in my book Why Not Blame Drew?

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