Good Morning, Ladies, Gentlemen and Hermit Crabs! It is Wednesday and here at According to Hoyt it’s Heresy Time!
Today’s heresy — against “the way things have always been done” is “Let’s get the state out of education, and let’s keep those two separated forever more!”
Stop looking at me like guppies. First, “the way things have always been done” applies, at most to the last 100 years. Second, you guys know how I feel about the state. Everything goes worse with the state involved! (Except possibly for defending our borders. I don’t know. We’ll find out if the state ever decides to do it.) Third, I am not calling for guillotines or ropes and lampposts, so as things go around here, I’m very calm, bordering on practically asleep.
What I am calling for is a cold, hard look at the utility of mass-industrial, state enforced education as we head out of the mass-production, mass-skills era.
I am not in any way shape or form calling for an end to education itself. I think my household has always spent ten times the average normal amount a household spends on education. (However much that is. Those statistics are mostly compiled by the state, and therefore not worth the paper they’re printed on or the pixels they burn.) We consumed formal online courses, educational videos, materials and tools for learning to do things…. it’s just what we do for fun around here.
And it is known that learning, and acquiring new skills all the time is great insurance against dementia. It’s also, in general, a good way to stay employed and support yourself.
However, tell me, not-so-gentle reader, what the heck business is this of the feds? Or even your very own state bureaucrats? I’m willing to concede it might — might, perhaps — be of interest to your city, local business associations or churches. In which case those entities are perfectly free to start schools to make sure future citizens or employees, or even believers, know how to use the oxford comma, tie their shoes, and speak in full, coherent sentences, or even solve quadratic equations, if that is what is required.
But why is it the province of the state?
Oh, I know what the excuse/reason was at the turn of the 20th century. Then as now, the US was trying to digest a massive bolo of immigrants who didn’t know how things were done here. And let’s be honest, teaching them to be “good Americans” was better than now, when we teach them to hate the country they just immigrated to.
On the other hand… On the other hand a lot of that “good Americans” thing taught them to be members of FDRs vision for the US. And…. And led to everything else that’s come along.
So why not remove all educational requirements, take the public schools and raze them, possibly salting the land afterwards, just so people get the point that no, this is not good and should not be done again.
Oh, you work and can’t be at home to look after the kids? Well, then. The money the government takes from your paycheck to pay for education should be refunded with all possible alacrity, and you can probably find someone to teach your kids what you want them to be taught, or just to let them free-range while you’re at work. Look, if you really insist, we can find you a multi-tattooed, pink-haired monstrosity to convince your kids that they’re really trans-dragons and you get the entire public school experience.
On the serious side, while there probably are still good teachers laboring in vain in public schools, I can guarantee there are fewer of them every year. The teachers #1 son loved had left either for administration positions, or left the system altogether by the time #2 son came along 2 years later. The horrible time-wasters, the perverts and the insane, however, stayed right there in the classroom.
The entire system is designed to make those who actually want to teach, and those who actually want to learn run out of the system or turn into useless drones. And our university system has been turned into a credential factory that actually teaches remarkably little.
In fact, the predictable result of turning education over to the state (note not the states, but the state, since it’s all overseen and dominated by the Federal government) has been to make it a factory of indoctrination, turning out people with the “correct” views, instead of those that conform to reality.
The only way we escape this dumpster fire in a clown shoe factory is to stop the automated production of more clown shoes by our state indoctrination mechanisms.
“But Sarah” you’ll say “People will be illiterate!”
Will they? They weren’t by and large, before the institution of free public schooling. Communities, groups of families, and even cities got together and chipped in money to hire teachers. Yes, I know, horrors, teachers wouldn’t be “certified.” They might however — take heart – be able to count to twenty with their shoes on. And likely wouldn’t be trained in teaching your kids the new gender of the week. Or enforce bizarre rules that ostracize kids they don’t like. Or–
Worst case scenario, the kids will indeed be illiterate. But they will be honestly illiterate and not illiterate holding a diploma from — is it Oregon? — that says they’re high school graduates, even though they cannot spell their own names.
In fact, at this point, I’m willing to say that kids roaming the neighborhoods in groups getting into trouble is — for the average neighborhood — way better than whatever is happening at the clown factory of government schools. Heck, even in the worst neighborhoods it wouldn’t be any different. They are already not going to school. The only difference would be that there isn’t a gigantic building where some people are getting paid for not teaching them.
You know, I come from a society in which, though schooling was theoretically mandatory through fifth grade by the time I came along, only about 10% of the people went that far. By and large everyone went to school through 4th grade, after which you claimed your kid was mentally retarded and got permission to send them to work.
So…. were all those people visibly worse educated than Americans with a 12th grade education? Not really. Like most Americans they continued learning (mostly bullshit) through entertainment and the news, and conversations with other people. (Mostly bullshit, because entertainment and news media were already taken over with rampant Marxism.) In their day to day lives, though, they learned what they needed to get along.
There were still illiterate people — mostly women — around from before there was any system of education at all. But you know, they were honestly illiterate. They didn’t try to tell you they’d gone to school and therefore knew they were oppressed or that they didn’t read because “the man” was keeping them down. And most of them had picked up enough reading to read the signs on merchandise, and enough counting to count money — both of which they did fast and accurately. You haven’t lived till you see an illiterate vendor in a market add the prices or what you just bought in her head, fast and accurately, apply any percentage discount, and give you the exact amount in seconds. Something our college graduates would feel was a micro aggression to even be asked to do.
All in all, yeah, the illiterate will always be with us. They’re with us now.
But a lot of the now illiterate might very well learn to read and write, at least enough to get by, by other means than state school, if we weren’t imprisoning them in mandatory seclusion and stealing their best learning years in a system that is obviously broken.
We don’t need any more state schools to produce “experts” for the system.
Open the doors. Let the kids out. Let employers find their own way to certify what people know. Or allow different companies to set up competing systems of certification.
Let the best system win.
The free market works better than the captive market in everything.
Education is no different.