U.S. Education Today and In The Future

02 May U.S. Education Today and In The Future

The View From My Desk……………………………………………………….John Spero

U.S. Education Today and In The Future

The world is changing at breakneck speed. Education in this country, not so much. As the global economy matures, we have come to the reality that other countries may be doing a better job of educating their students than we are here in the U.S.

As unemployment rates of young people continues to rise, it has become obvious that college training in science and technology must be better aligned with the world of work. We need more vocational schooling and apprenticeships. College is not for everyone. The education system needs to be more nimble to catch up to the pace of change elsewhere.

“No Child Left Behind” was an attempt to quantitatively measure students’ progress. Although it was a far from perfect attempt to fix schools, it did highlight a need for improvement.

Arizona is both blessed and cursed with the most ambitious school choice program in the nation. Students are free to attend out of district or any of the more than 500 charter schools in the state. The idea behind the movement was two-fold. First, that the competition would spur development of teaching techniques, etc. which would eventually be recognized as “best practices”. Those ideas would be spread resulting in large scale improvements. Reality is that few charters are innovative in that way. Instead, most charters acquire reading and math techniques from publishing companies or large public districts. Secondly, choice saves the state tons of money (less funding per student and no need to build expensive campuses). The results of the charter movement would have been better if parents were more knowledgeable shoppers.

How Can We Make Education Better?

Over the years, most decisions regarding education have been made by politicians, local, state or national. Often, those policies are not based on the best brain research or best practices. The only solution to improving education is parents like you learning all you can about education, making good educational choices for your child(ren), not on hearsay, but on real research and by supporting your child(ren)’s education at home.

Suggested Reading

“The Good School: How Smart Parents Get Their Kids The Education They Deserve” by Peg Tyre

“The Element: How Finding Your Passion Changes Everything” by Ken Robinson

Suggested Viewing

http://www.ted.com/talks/tags/education

“Two points difference in standardized test scores does not necessarily make one school better than the other.”
John Spero