The State Of Education In America
Formal education in USA was created to keep up with the industrial revolution, and the economic condition is created. Today, that formal education is seriously failing. It is clear that neither the schools nor the colleges are doing enough to correct the course.
In this post, we discover some of the significant reasons education in the US is not working for the good of all.
- Schools are overcrowded.
It is a known fact that a small class where the teacher to student ratio is balanced gives better outcomes because each child gets the attention they require. Statistics prove that classrooms in the US are exceeding capacity. It has made it tougher for children to learn and near impossible for the teacher to teach effectively. At a time when kids need more attention, they are getting less of it.
- Parents are uninvolved.
To instruct a child, learning in the classroom is not sufficient. It has to be augmented with learning at home. With more interaction outside of school hours, the child learns faster, better and more. For this, the involvement of the parent is crucial. But given the demands of a career, few parents are able to deliver. This has put over-dependence on schools and teachers. Couple it with the fact the classrooms are already over capacity, the outcome is not good. For the education system to be better parental involvement in academics is necessary.
Reasons Why Education In America Is Deteriorating
- Training methods are outdated.
The children of today, from the day they step into a classroom come with minds cluttered with random information thanks to the overuse of technology. While the teachers of today are still stuck with using training methods of the past.
This disparity in what the student needs and what the teacher is able to provide is one of the reasons education in the USA is deteriorating day by day. It is high time; we look into a modern classroom with modern techniques of teaching that take into accounts the bright, young minds of today.
We have to be cognizant that the current crop of children doesn’t enter school with a clean slate or with naïve minds. Thus, it stands to reason that teachers must be equipped to handle it. This necessitates better and more focused training of teachers. When teachers are taught to meet the demands of the present generation, they can provide quality education.
- School funding is limited.
Studies show that US states contribute less funding on a per-student basis than they used to. Even with the given condition of the economy, spending on K-12 public school is severely limited. Given that 44% of the total education funding comes from the states, this is more than a dismal picture.
When schools are not adequately funded, teachers are not paid and the resources they have to help children dwindle to almost nothing. Therefore, if we hope to see a better education system in the country, then the need of the hour is to fund schools better. It is only then will we be able to work on issues like the gender gap in STEM, ensuring high-risk children remain in school, etc.
Teacher Tenure: A Point To Look At
Teacher tenure protects underperforming assets.
A point of contention and one of the most contested in recent times is the teacher tenure. Reformers correctly argue that tenure contracts offer protection to teachers who barely perform. As a result, it is the students who suffer from it.
Teachers, on the other hand, argue that because the K-12 landscape is continually changing, which includes evaluation systems, tenure is all but essential. It protects the jobs of those over-performing teachers who otherwise would be sacked.
If we aim to change education in the USA, then there has to be a review of tenure contracts. Maybe new stipulations can be added that benefit not only teachers but also the children.
Like everything else on earth, teaching and education also need an overhaul from time to time. Some of the reasons mentioned above have been long-standing issues, while others (like the emergence of smartphones, tablets and laptops) are new, unexpected challenges.
Irrespective of whether the problems riddling the education system are new or old, the fact remains that appropriate steps in the right direction are desperately needed. More than that, if we do not carve a path of correction right now, then it may as well be too late to do anything.
If you are a teacher, school owner, administrator or officer of the education system, take stock now!