Back to School

School’s officially back in session for pretty much everyone I know and my fellow graduates are either working, looking for work, or heading straight on to grad school. Once upon a time, when I thought about being a teacher, grad school might’ve been next step as well. However (with full respect to those who pursue even higher education) I’ve realized I’ve had enough of the school system.

As a kid from what I can remember school was somewhat fun, I got to hang out with friends and learning didn’t feel like a strict rigid process, but as I’m sure happens to a lot of people, growing older made me feel less enthusiastic about the way I was taught. We already know that around 9am is when people are ready to work, hence the existence of the 9-5pm work day system, so being at school at 8am everyday in middle school and 7:30 am everyday in high school was what I imagine torture must be like. I have no idea how my sister manages it given that she is not a morning person.

To top it all off eating in class is kind of a no no to most, but as a person who needs constant snacks to avoid headaches concentrating isn’t always easy on an empty stomach. Kids with low blood sugar are the real MVPs. Those health factors aside school also made learning a bit of a drag. Younger me loved to read (and older me has rediscovered it) but middle and high school reading could get pretty bleak. I remember in my AP Lit class almost all the books we read, that were considered feminist when they were written, ended with the heroine dying by suicide. Now I don’t want to say that all older books are meritless, because you can learn something from anything, but if kids had the chance to read more contemporary novels or a wider variety of genres and authors of different backgrounds, perhaps they’d enjoy it a lot more.

This is especially apparent because in my college courses I came across fellow english majors who stated that they didn’t like to read. I know what they meant was that they didn’t like to read the books they were assigned (one girl pretty much said as much), but it’s still a pretty disheartening thing to hear.

The final aspect of the school system (from within) that gets me ranting is the teachers that don’t seem to have a sense of common decency. You know the professor that thinks their class is the only one that really matters regardless of whether it relates to your interests or major. Classes don’t work if the students and the educator are on opposite sides of the fence. The lack of communication combined with a curriculum that is pretty much set in stone to prepare for standardized tests makes for a pretty rough school year if you fall behind or have little to no interest in the material.

Outside of the school itself my remaining problem with the system is the lack of proper funding. A lot of the inside problems would be solved if schools had money for better/updated textbooks, higher salaries for teachers, and stronger resources to help students of different needs and abilities.

As with most topics I write about this only scratches the surface of my feelings, however this is a good place to stop. I’ll leave you now with two questions:

  1. What was/is your favorite thing about school?
  2. What would you  improve/have improved about you school if budget was no issue?

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