By Anthony G. Stewart, PhD
The Education Revolution is an important change in the process of facilitating the acquisition of knowledge, skills, beliefs, moral and ethical values, positive thinking, and habits as instruction is given or received.
To workers it means meritocracy; promotion and appointment by qualification, experience and fairness. Failure to follow these tenets results in the demoralisation of the workforce and the consequent drop in productivity.
To students the Education Revolution means opportunity. The revolution is particularly important to students who would otherwise have been denied opportunity that they should have.
Our school system needs to teach children not only how to make a living but also how to live. This means that we learn skills to contribute positively to our society and we also learn to live amicably with each other. One attempt to do this is by bringing students into secondary schools who previously may not have had that opportunity.
However, although they wear the same uniform, most schools, if not all, take actions to exclude them from accessing the instructions they need. These actions include placing these students of the Education Revolution in separate classes. The consequence of this is that students experience discrimination. This is natural as segregation leads to ostracisation. These students often enter secondary school with low reading scores and are often resented by some teachers because of this. Some may need individualised instruction and extra support in order to succeed. Rather than planning for this, these students are faced with remarks like: “Why don’t they go back to the primary school?” and “This is not a school for children with special needs.”
The truth is that many schools have not embraced the Education Revolution and as a consequence actively work to sabotage it. If school leaders and leaders in education do not believe in the revolution, its failure is inevitable along with the grave concomitant failure of the children of the Education Revolution.
One way the Education Revolution should benefit this society is by helping us to do what we do better. The construction worker or vehicle mechanic, for example, would have attached themselves in apprenticeship programmes in the workplace to learn the skills of their profession. Having delayed their entry into the workforce, the Education Revolution should better prepare them for entry by immersing them in the subject areas they need. These may include physics, information technology, mathematics, building and furniture technology, technical drawing and English A. In many cases the students who need and will use their knowledge of subjects like physics are denied the opportunity to study them.
In this age of the Education Revolution why can’t schools guarantee that their students pass English A, mathematics and three other subjects needed for their progress in their chosen academic or career paths? The extent to which this occurs will be a true measure of the success of the Education Revolution and of the masterminds behind it.
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