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In the 1840s, history records the establishment of schools, which transformed the existing educational system into one riddled with flaws. Hundreds of years ago, the majority of learning took place at home, with parents teaching their children, and when the family was unable to do so, private tutors took over (Watson). Since then, the system has changed, schools have sprung up all over the world, and schooling has become more formalized, despite the fact that many people are against it. John Taylor Gatto claims in his commentary Against School that there is a major difference between getting an education that teaches skills and receiving a schooling that turns the learner into a robot with lowered intellectual ability.
The author first identifies that the primary variation between what he calls an education from what the school systems of is the fact that people get bored from doing repetitive activities. It is an unfortunate case that getting into a schooling system involves teaching children whose only desire is to get excellent grades after following a twelve-year compulsory school program (Gatto 166) It is even more hurting that the teachers who assume this role are victims of a system they hated when they were undergoing the same program. It is for this reason that Gatto identifies that there is not education involved because education is about learning new concepts rather than passing through a programed curriculum where the same ideas are passed from one generation to another, resulting in boredom.
The other displeasure that the author identifies that makes him conclude that there a difference between getting educated from being schooled is the fact that the schools make people behave in a childish manner. Schools have the major weakness of denying the students the autonomy that is associated with being an adult. The primary traits in the transition from childhood to adulthood include adventure, resilience, curiosity, and the capacity of surprising insight (Gatto 155). However, these are the qualities that the schools suppress and instead have turned out into long-term forced confinement of both teachers and students with the cell-blocked style ending up as factories of childishness. Instead, had it been a proper education system, the youth would be more inquisitive and ready to take on new challenges. The schooling effect has resulted in humans who are try to keep the flawed system to themselves and undergo the never-ending childish behaviors for fear of failure.
The third relevant factor author Gatto uses as a basis for describing how the schooling systems fails in giving the learner an education is that children are being lied to and told that intelligence is defined by the rank they get in the exams. The author opposes the idea of labelling, ranking and rating students because the system used to reach such abstract values fail to sum the substance of the child. There are other important virtues that an educated person possesses including the character, potential, and determination spirit which are suppressed by the system (Watson). An education structure that cares for the needs of the children should thus be designed to cover for the full liberal arts program because only then can it be said that one has become educated. The fact that schools deny the children the chance to develop their talents is thus identified as the primary reason to why schooling differs from getting an education because the latter gives the opportunity to learn (Bryan).
From the assertions by the author, I also acknowledge that schools are programmed to teach students to become robots who only limit their thinking within the capacity of what they learned in the curriculum. The system is thus flawed and can arguably be referred to as the greatest failures in modern-day sociology. I am a victim of the same structured curriculum and interestingly, I was unable to oppose the laid out protocol because of the misconception that failing in school would be leeway to poverty. I ended up striving to be the best students amid disappointments in the hope that I will land a great job in future. In fact, it was not until I read the article that I gained better insights and was able to conceive the subject in a broader sense and realized how much of a victim I am.
In summary, the author highlights that there is a huge difference between getting an education that caters for the need of creativity from having been schooled. The schooling system is opposed because it only makes the stakeholders childish and engages them in repetitive concept that result in boredom as the learner is lied to about the measure of intelligence. I agree with the author on the subject because I also believe that I have been a victim of the same with the need for a change being apparent. The overall impression that the book creates is that it is an eye-opener to many who think that schools are worth it considering the adverse effects it has on the learner.
Bryan, Mary. “5 Flaws That Prove America’s Education System Was Broken Before DeVos.” Odyssey (2015): n. pag. Web.
Gatto, John Taylor. “How Public Education Cripples Our Kids, and Why.” Against School (2003): n. pag. Print.
Watson, Stephanie. “How Public Schools Work.” How Stuff Works. N.p., 2017. Web.
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