Why Education in America Stinks

The root problem in American education comes from the fact that Americans don’t actually much like children. It’s a nation so young compared to one like Finland, that the relationship of authority towards children is more like older sibling/adolescent to younger child than parent/adult to child.

Underneath the surface where, at the privileged end of the spectrum children are spoiled with stuff and managed by ‘helicopter’ parents, where parents would do anything for their darling offspring, including cheating to get them into ‘desirable’ schools, in fact, children are status symbols, proof-of-concepts, more like things than individual, autonomous-spirited people.

At the impoverished end of the spectrum, children just happen, or even if wanted, poverty makes raising them a burden, and out of the necessities of desperation, children are often physically as well as emotionally neglected. Kids are on a track to be burdens to family, to become burdens on society. Ironic, isn’t it, that it is society itself that drives this dyanamic?

What it comes down to is this overall culmination: That children in this society are not cherished for themselves as individuals. Below the surface, they are resented, they are minimalized, they are punished for being children. Our history shows it: the society in general has undervalued children and anything to do with children, undervaluing their carers and teachers, under-supporting education, and designing educational systems that rely on punishment for achieving learning. In fact, punishment seems to be the point.

All the worst hallmarks of adolescence are displayed in American society: Selfishness, resentment, intolerance and disrespect for anyone or anything older or different, refusal to be taught, failure to understand how much we don’t know, competitive aggression against those who are younger, weaker, bullyable.

We will only begin to do better when there are more individuals who make decisions and choices, and act from maturity, than the adolescence that dominates American society now.

I have often wondered how anyone survives adolescence. But they do. We do. I do try to keep faith that America will, and while we’re here, the human race, as well. We will be so brilliant, if we do!

by CL Redding 10/2022

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  1. I like the analysis if not the message. We up here in the Somewhat Not Always Awful White North can’t brag that our society / education system is much better.


    1. Canada has a more wholesome background society even if the Euro-based, child-envious based educational system sprang from the same source. Ours in the US has its worst roots in Puritanism. Canada at least has its seed energies from a bunch of French rogues!


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