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The Failure of School | Omid Fouladpouri

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article do not reflect the opinions of Pulse Magazine as a whole.

Schools, specifically K-12 institutions, are a facet of modern society which everyone must endure, but it is rarely considered whether this institution is fundamentally flawed. Are other aspects of society limiting the prospects of how education could be? Is a profit driven society contributing to the worsening mental health crisis, seen in especially the Millenial and Gen Z generations? The answer to these questions is yes.

The way school currently functions is far from ideal. It is not about catering to the intellectual and artistic capabilities of students, it is about promoting profitable students. The possibility of a far more advanced species, both in technology and freedom, is prevented through the limiting of students to the status quo. Through limiting creative opportunities, we must only hope some just accidentally break away and create something new. We always think of the people who have contributed to societal change from their creativity and knowledge, but we fail to consider the amount of potential Isaac Newtons and Albert Einsteins that we have lost to the shackles of poverty, profitability, and strict abidement to the status quo.

With all of this in mind, it should be abundantly clear that school is made to create a lot of similarly limited people. There are defined paths and courses for students to pass just for a grade or test at the end of the year, all in an attempt to please universities. Education’s lack of adapting and catering to creative faculties is a significant part of its failure, and the perpetuation of a profit-driven system will continue to prevent the manifestation of any significant improvement due to the lack of money made investing in student’s interests. This does not mean that we should view a healthier education system as impractical, but that we should think of a system of profit as impractical to achieving a society that caters to all interests.

Considering the amount of stress that comes along with the desire to appeal to bigger institutions in a society that depends on the bottom line, we can see a direct connection between profit and worse mental health. The lack of societal investment in our youth is a significant contributor to the mental health crisis, along with the lack of mental health care (unless you can afford it, which is again, connected to profit). If it is recognized that everyone is born with different experiences and interests, we must also recognize the necessity of the creation of an adaptive education that appeals to what the students want to study. When one is forced to study something they don’t enjoy, they develop horrible mental health. Good mental health is created through a system that values healthy humans, not the profits of big corporations.

Now after reviewing all these problems, and how they contribute to even bigger societal problems, a solution must be proposed. By recognizing the problems of the institution, a solution can be derived: a system of education in which the interests of each individual student are promoted and furthered. Think of the amount of inventions we would have now if we had this personalization in education. This system would communicate with each student themselves and find ways to appeal to them both topic-wise and in the methods of teaching. In addition to this, the abolition of profit would immediately remove the stress that comes along with what only a profitable society demands, appealing to universities instead of enjoying your time. The best and happiest people, as well as the most productive, are ones who enjoy their work and what they study.

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