An intermittently Liberal anthology compiled by Jonathan Calder

Friday, June 13, 2003  

Schools and gaols
A radical approach to education requires a correct understanding of the problem and also of what has been tried so far. Our compulsory schooling is disguised child care, or the corralling of children to get them safely out of the way, so their parents can function economically. This is the primary purpose, and teaching anything worthwhile is secondary.

In achieving its primary purpose it is partially successful - although more and more of the inmates are successfully breaking out or behaving so as to guarantee their own exclusion from the system.

The economics and organisational logistics of prisons are unlikely to be the same as those which might successfully apply to schools. Gaols also tend to be compulsory environments where you serve a term and are eventually released.

Real schools throughout human history have been institutions where the candidates genuinely want to study and where they have managed the difficulties of gaining entry. Entry to a real school is based on the capacity and desire to learn.

Christopher Ross Tunnel Visions: Journeys of an underground philosopher (2001)

posted by Jonathan Calder | 7:22 pm