Schools are failing and students are dropping out because of the negative aspects of the education system. There are many arguments that may refute this claim, as the education system could be fixed and some might not see it as a system that needs fixing at all. However, there are many problematic values perpetuated by the current education system that need to be looked at more critically, some of which include distribution of funding and teaching methods. The education system has come to a point where it’s a very one-sided ,biased view favoring conservative methods of education, and a progress is usually difficult to take place when a system does not advocate for its own change.
One reason as to why the education system still needs changing is that monetary resources are not allocated efficiently and fairly. Some might argue that different microcosms deserve different funding, but that does not answer the question of equity of information, as students nationwide still need to know similar things, regardless of school funding. So many students are in a position where they are learning material that is outdated, repetitive, and sometimes incorrect as well, and that is due to lack of funding to update schools with era-conscious materials and faculty. In the article “A Quality Approach to School Funding”, the author quotes, “School funding systems should ensure equal access to core educational services,” which applies not just to individual schools but the system as a whole, meaning that if some schools are benefiting from more up-to-date education due to their higher funding, then it is only fair that others should as well. The author also states, “When states invest in their public schools and create more equitable school finance systems, student achievement levels rise, and the positive effects are even greater among low-income students”, showing that investing in a more even distribution between school systems helps students from varying financial backgrounds by evening the playing fielf. When students are learning the same material as everyone else, as long as the material is updated and proficient, the success rates tend to rise.
There are many ways that teaching methods hinder students success, and the education system would be vastly improved in all teachers were taught professionally the same ways as everywhere else, and maintained that knowledge throughout their careers. In a study by the New England Complex Systems Institute, convergent and divergent teaching methods are shown to be effective as they hone in on self-directed teaching, targeting the motivation of students. One might argue that students are not aware of their own motivations and desires, and that the goal of an education system is to develop holistic knowledge rather than encourage self-direction. While it is important to have general knowledge of the world around us, one thing that is missing is understanding how to motivate oneself, and divergent teaching styles encourage students to find their own approach to solving problems. If education systems had a means of generalizing the type of students in the certain school, schools would have the ability to cater to the values of individual students and allow them to pursue the work that interests them and motivates them to think critically, not just forcing them to plug and chug formulas and rules. This can mean that teachers could adapt their methods on a student-by-student basis to promote motivation and attention, all the while teaching valuable subjects.
Textbooks have been the main way of learning through schools, colleges, and many educational institutions. Although reading and analyzing mathematic equations are vital, almost all other subjects are subjected to failure when put through textbooks. The argument here is that by providing students with a single source, they are not encouraged to think outside of the box, and studying may become mundane. An argument can be made that this method instills consistency, as students would learn to rely on the text for knowledge. However, this narrows down the list of options a student might have, and it can discourage ingenuity. Studies have shown that peer to peer and teacher to student direct teaching styles are the key to success in these subject matters, particularly because subjects like mathematics aim to teach problem-solving through explicit methods. According to the study “Why textbooks don’t work anymore – and what does” by Inspiration Education, textbooks aren’t the only option and educators must rely on their own sources to keep the momentum going. The author of the study states that “textbooks are a tool, not a solution. They are meant to supplement an education, to offer references for when the student is outside the classroom, and to provide an engaging resource against which students can test their knowledge”. This is a very important statement, as it shows that textbooks may not provide an engaging way for a lot of students to study, but rather are one tool of many possible options. This study shows that textbooks are a lot of the time unaffordable for so many students, inaccurate and not updated, and repetitive throughout many editions of teaching the same material. Not only is it extremely expensive, it could be easily not paid for and taught through PowerPoints, visual slideshows, or visual lectures in general without spending or requiring students to spend hundreds on a single tool.
These are issues that are constantly being brought up in many communities, as it further more shows that the education could be better if these problems were attended to. Many teachers agree with these issues, and believe that a change is needed in order to guarantee the future of our nation will go in the right direction, as a lot of students today are succeeding the old fashioned way or not succeeding at all. Funding the correct departments in the system instead of spending the money elsewhere, changing the entire teaching styles and evenly distribute correct information throughout all communities with the right tools, and changing the entire system as a whole in order to create a new and better one. This is crucial to our success, and the success of all students for the future, and must be done.