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Should we redefine the purpose of education in this century?

Isn’t it a little odd that those who scored A grades in the university are currently being employed by their counterparts who dropped out? Just look at Microsoft for instance. What then is the purpose of education today? Should we go down the history of education and find out where we missed the turn? Are the advantages of education that we keep drumming into the heads of our children real? Should we put aside what some of the sages said and sit down to redefine education? I need your views.

Kristi Hammond

in Higher Education

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Jodi Brooks on April 23, 2018

Interestingly, those who dropped out and those who drudged on all got some form of education. They did not all get certificates, but they all had education. The emerging question in today’s pedagogical world is therefore not about education, but about certification. It would appear as if we are pinning medals on some good soldiers while missing out on others. I hope the following points will help solve your confusion a little bit.

As you point out yourself, the dropouts are hiring those who completed. This means that they still need the economists, lawyers, managers and engineers who studied to the end. So we should understand that completing the entire course is not a bad thing. Education serves a purpose in these new super enterprises ruling the globe. It is only that it comes in the form of hired help rather than a proprietorship. I would not thus agree that the purpose for which we came up with education has been completely lost.

You can’t do without education. What we refer to as education is formal learning. There is also the informal type of education that you get outside of school. These can later be formalized. Concepts like drunk-driving causing accidents did not originate in the school curriculum; they came straight from the road. You probably recall that your mama or nanny taught you how to brush your teeth and tie shoelaces, long before you went to school. They also shaped most of your beliefs. If you go down the education history path long enough, you will find that what originates on the street, will end up in the school classroom.

The likes of Microsoft founder Bill Gates have not negated the concept of education, they have enhanced it. They have debunked the myth that you must hold a certain degree to succeed in life. This has forced education policy formulators back to the drawing board. This does not mean they will throw away the whole process of learning. Instead, they will incorporate the lessons coming from such persons who got bored of what they were being taught. They will widen the scope of education to be more inclusive of unconventional ideas. Education will be better from now on, guaranteed.

The concepts we are drumming into our children about the advantages of being educated should not be discarded either. There are numerous people who succeeded through education.

Brian Warner2 years ago

There is an old saying that if you think education is expensive, try ignorance. The purpose of education remains as relevant today is it has always been. The idea is to inform, enlighten and challenge learners. It is our understanding of education and our concept of success that differ. Some people see education as an opportunity imbibe rather than create knowledge. Others see it as a highway to success better than everyone else around. Success is seen in terms of how much money you make at the end of the week. Nevertheless, the guy who makes the most money also employs some of the best-educated people around. Not all good ideas come out of a certificate, but actualizing those ideas depends on certificate holders. So in short, education and success are joined at the umbilical cord. One cannot thrive without the other. We cannot do without education for now.


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