High school graduates seem to know less each year. Is this by design?

Once upon a time long ago, the whole point of education was something called knowledge. The goal was to transmit this magical thing from the older generation to the new generation. And that was how we sustain civilization.

So if you are a new observer of K-12, the thing that will shock you the most is that knowledge is no longer a magical thing. It is a scorned thing. It is last century's fad and something we need not bother with anymore.

We are in the 21st century now and all of our literacies and competencies will turn out not to involve much knowledge.

The pattern all across our public schools is to teach less and less, to require that students retain less and less, to test on less and less, and to send kids on to college who don't know who won the Civil War or where Spain is on a map.

It's nothing less than a blitzkrieg directed at knowledge. The Education Establishment undermines knowledge in any possible way starting with inferior instruction in reading. Kids can't learn as much as they used to by themselves. Meanwhile, constructivism requires that teachers don't teach. So unless the students see something in a movie, they don't know it. Ask some of these kids who won the Civil War, and they will say, "France?"

This article is titled "Public Schools Promote a Culture of Ignorance."  If we are to fix this problem, we first have to honestly confront that the problem is very serious.


 My own view is that people are better off knowing a lot, in terms of their own careers and satisfaction. And the  whole society is better off if people know a lot because that society will be more productive and intelligent.

 For me, the most shocking thing about our society is that there seems to be a tiny minority at the top who think they are better off if the society is dumb.  

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Comment by Bruce Deitrick Price on March 17, 2016 at 2:48pm

I appreciate your comment. You make my point from your own personal experience in a very dramatic way. Taking pride in ignorance-- that sounds like a society on its way to the bottom.

  But I bet that a lot of these kids cannot read in what we would call a fluent way. They can half-read, let's say, thanks to decades of dysfunctional pedagogy known as sight words, Whole Word, etc. So you've got these kids who can't read pretending not to care about reading. We need to make sure that every student can read by the second grade.

Comment by Lorene Bossong on March 17, 2016 at 8:02am

Sadly, my high school seniors seem to take pride in their ignorance.  They like to "brag" about how many books they didn't read.  Our culture scorns intelligent people and derides them as geeks, nerds, and social outcasts.  Being smart was never popular, but today being ignorant is.





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