Public Education

I hear a lot of people running down public schools. A guy on the radio was bashing public schools just yesterday, wanting them all closed down.

I went to three public schools and one public college. Think I am uneducated? My dad came from a poor working family with five kids, and went to public school himself, and attending a public college on the first GI Bill. No one who ever met him would think him poorly educated. And I will put the kids of my high school class up against any group of private school kids any day.

When you hear a public figure bashing public education, do some research and see where they went to school, and where their kids go/went.

What you will often discover is that they prefer or can afford private schools. Or else they are afraid that kids will not learn their preferred teachings in a school they cannot control. This is often the reason given for home schooling.

In the past few years, the governor of Texas tried to do away with public education in his state. When asked about what children would do instead of go to class, he said that the working age should be dropped to at least 12 years old.

They want your children to work at menial jobs, while the children of those who can afford private educations can get the best jobs, because they will remain unthreatened by the mass of uneducated people.

The purpose of education is to learn HOW to think, to develop creative learning skills. But you also need it to get the better jobs. There are many examples of those did well in life without an education, but whom did they hire once their companies took off? And for each success, there are tens of thousands who did not make it without education.

When I went to US Army Cavalry School, the requirements included how to read and write. Sounds funny, but lots of people were ineligible. Also, they developed a “think WAY outside the box” mentality that meant requiring creative thinking and split second judgement calls. A cavalryman alone was as dangerous as a whole group of other soldiers.

The first GI Bill allowed millions of Americans to afford college for the first time often in their family’s history, and one can see the unprecedented economic growth the United States experienced.

Let’s not go back to the 19th century; neither their experiences, values, or education system. Four year olds should be learning life skills, not digging coal.


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