I wake up at 7 and eat a hastily prepared breakfast. I dress up in my white button shirt and red tie, and leave. I enter the building, wait until the bell rings, and enter the classroom. For the next 45 minutes I will sit silently down at my designated spot (possibly near someone I hate) to write down things I don't care about. Finally, I am graciously allowed to leave for the 5-15 minute break. I enter a small corridor, with hundreds of other screaming people, running around. Out of the corner of my eye, I spot a CCTV camera, watching my every move.
The bell rings again, and I find myself back in the classroom. The story repeats 6 to 8 times that day. Finally, I can go back home. I turn on my computer to play some games. But then, it dawns on me that I still have homework to do. Another two hours gone. Need to pack up my belongings for tomorrow. Maybe I still have some time for a round of Fortnite. Or I will just go to sleep, as I'm fucking tired. After all, I must be rested for the test tomorrow. A test where I will have to answer questions about things I don't care about. Okay, I've got a decent grade. At last, I can forget it all. After all, I need space in my brain for the next wave of trash.
Sounds like hell? Well, this is the reality for over a billion children on this Earth:
About one billion between ages 5-14 (school age). Add the 15 and 16 year olds and you get a few hundred million more. Most of them will go to school:
Worldwide, about 4% of school age kids will fail to finish (primary and secondary) school. For Europe and Central Asia, the amount is very close to zero. You could say we have a pandemic of the school virus. So let's explore the harms of this virus:
We will let the government itself explain it:
We all have a responsibility to educate the next generation of informed citizens, introducing them to the best that has been thought and said, and instilling in them a love of knowledge and culture for their own sake. But education is also about the practical business of ensuring that young people receive the preparation they need to secure a good job and a fulfilling career, and have the resilience and moral character to overcome challenges and succeed.
I'm guessing this will be the most important paragraph, so I'll focus on it. Does school introduce students to
the best that has been thought and said? I don't recall learning about Ray Peat ^_^. But anyway, this isn't justified - the students will forget most of it since the schooling system is not designed with long term memorization in mind. Does it instill in them
a love of knowledge and culture for their own sake? No way - how can you
love knowledge when you are forced to sit in a chair for 7 hours a day, writing down things you don't care about? School, in fact, does exactly the opposite of what it allegedly aims at. How about the
good job and fulfilling career? Most jobs don't need any education at all, and the majority of people will end up working in those (as butchers, cleaners, etc) since they are the most available ones. For the rest, you will have to learn the skills on your own - and school inhibits that - or go to a special school later, anyway. And hell - even if this was true - have the school shills considered that maybe people don't want to
fulfill themselves with jobs, but just earn enough money to live so they can then do what they want? The last stated justification is
and have the resilience and moral character to overcome challenges and succeed. Don't mock me - the only resilence you learn is in enduring school abuse - but you might just as well be psychologically destroyed by it. There is certainly nothing positive going on there. As we can see, the four pillars of justification for the educational system have fallen. What does school really accomplish, then?
In Poland, primary and secondary lasts 9 years (until recently this used to be 10). 6-8 of school hours per day plus the commute. Add homework and other preparation (like for tests) on top of that. So, the formative years of a person are almost entirely focused on school. Imagine what else could be done with this time. But maybe we do get something useful out of it? Let's see:
This should be obvious. Let's look at the specifics:
The problem here is, that the school system is focused on knowledge - words that you write down, remember and then forget - instead of skills. Even if you have a hard-on for kids having "general knowledge", it should only require one year to shove all the trash. Since the later years are just restating what was learned with small additions. But regardless, I don't see the point of doing any of this, if it doesn't help you and you forget it anyway.
Which is not how people actually learn. The human brain is not like a bag that you can just fill things up with until they start falling out. It learns by focus and interaction. It is also a biological organ that requires energy which is constantly being depleted. It has a need for rest and play. This means that, if someone is bored, tired or hates the subject, they will not learn very well at that point. So you can't just throw the kitchen sink at someone and expect it to stick. Which is exactly what the schooling system tries to do (there are 16 mandatory subjects in Poland). Bury students with nonsense until nothing registers, and then bury them further with homework. In this case - even if you find something useful and / or interesting in there - it will get ignored by the already overloaded brain.
School convinces you that education means sitting, writing down, answering questions on a test and forgetting. This is what's being engraved into your brain's circuits through 10 or more years of schooling. And with that conviction, why would anyone want to learn anything? It seems that school is designed to cause exactly this attitude towards learning. Even if a child survives the grind with his youthful curiosity still intact, they can begin actually learning skills only at age 16 (if they skip high school) or later. Regardless of this, education is impossible during the school ages, as there is just no time. At best you come back home at 14 or 15, and have to make your food, then solve homework. And your brain is fried anyway, so you just want to rest or play. Imagine if kids could instead learn what they are interested in without being distracted by things they don't care about. Without associating education with boredom or hurt. Every so often you hear about kids that taught themselves programming or drawing at young ages. But this is despite - not because of - schooling. These are the few that have had enough resilence to still retain their natural excitement about learning. And they did it in an entirely self-directed way - at the time and pace of their choosing, finding their own materials, asking questions, creating their own paths through failure and eventual success. If school didn't exist, there would be a lot more of such people.
You will be tested on all the things you've learned from the various subjects. Some of those tests can be announced (so you can prepare), others can happen at any time - so you're always under pressure. Then, a number is assigned according to the performance you gave on your test. The system rewards high number, instead of any kind of useful skills. And you can get that high number through e.g cheating or bribes. If you get enough high numbers on tests, you are able to get the best grade overall in a certain subject. If you do that with enough subjects, you can apply to a better high school once you leave secondary. But, this requires a several year long constant grind of learning and solving tests (on things you mostly didn't care about). If you thought just going to school wastes a lot of time, try preparing for all the tests, if you want to be a good student. All that so you can repeat the process in high school (unless you go to a trade school or nowhere). And all that so you can later get a job where you won't use any of that knowledge anyway. Doesn't the whole thing just seem stupid?
If someone is great at programming, writing, drawing, or sports - they will still have to bother with all the stuff they don't care about. They still have to deal with screaming teachers and other fluff. In most cases they will lose motivation and their exceptional talents will go to waste. At best they will waste time on useless things until they are able to cultivate their talents. On their own, because school does not provide opportunity to do so (it's not in the program). This will necessarily sacrifice their grades (see above section) but will produce better results overall in terms of satisfaction and later opportunity. How cool would it be, if school picked out the talented kids and directed their development towards their talents? No, got to bring everyone down to the same level of "general knowledge" and demotivation. As stated before, only the truly determined kids can survive the grind and still retain their excitement for learning.
They're victims similar to the students. Please realize that - for all the time the student is in school - the teacher has to be, as well. And they have to control 30 screaming kids at a time, for 8 or so hours a day, every day. This is very stressful and I've seen teachers have literal breakdowns. The teacher will have to compete for the attention of the student that is already bogged down with 10 other subjects they don't care about. And what they are supposed to "teach" is carefully controlled. They have to review the stupid tests, etc. So a teacher might be excited about a subject, but will still be consumed by the grind - same as the student. With this in mind, we see that the teacher's situation is even worse than the student's. At least the student has to focus only on writing things down - the teacher must take care of a bunch of children who want to be anywhere but in school. Now imagine that the student is able to choose their subjects. And that the teacher can do whatever they want during the lessons, instead of following some "program". Since the things taught in school are not required for life, it only makes sense to base teaching on interest (both for the student and the teacher). This would also increase information retention, if the students learned only what they care about. And would decrease the stress levels of the teachers since the kids would not feel like caged animals forced to perform tricks. The current system is so insane, I can barely believe I'm not in some nightmare.
I will surely hear (and have a lot in real life) some people say that kids must go to school because otherwise, they won't be able to get a job later in life. First of all, that's not exactly true - teenagers have been doing jobs forever without finishing education, even during their vacations or weekends etc. But even with that assumption, it's only because it's been arbitrarily decided that you need to finish school to be graciously allowed to work. The "knowledge" you've gained (and forgot) during your school years is not actually used at the workplace. They will either teach you at your job if it's simple, or you'll need to go to a special school anyway if it's complex. Primary and secondary school, or even general high school, is only relevant as much as it allows you to enter the higher schools (this is also arbitrary). And the majority of people are doing those "simple" jobs, so education literally never comes into play. Someone like a barber needs only a short barber course to be able to do his job properly. Again, the education requirement is just arbitrarily set up by governments. The right response is to take it down instead of sending kids to a 10 (or more) year long prison because of it. Edit: you could also bypass the school requirement by being a self-taught artist / programmer / writer etc. and accepting donations or doing commissions. Of course, in the end, I think the job system is outdated (or maybe it's never been good) and will die soon regardless, but for now, it needs to be reformed as to not require finishing school.
I've had people tell me that "work is school for adults" or such things. There are actually very little similarities, though. The biggest one is that you "have to" go to both, but even that evaporates when you have money saved up and can stop working at any moment for at least a while (a kid cannot leave school for the whole duration of his education aside from 2 months per year vacations). You can choose your job - a kid cannot choose his school and they're pretty much all the same anyway (talking about primary and secondary here). The vast majority of jobs are way less restrictive than school. You can usually walk and speak. For many jobs you can at least partially control your work environment, and have an opportunity to rest - in school, you just write and write and write. In most jobs you also don't have the boss watching you over at all times, so there is not the aspect of behavioral control that the teacher provides. Nursing - for example - allows significant freedom of movement, resting opportunity, task variety, has good pay and you actually feel like you are accomplishing something. But even for the extremely restrictive jobs - you at least get fucking paid; a kid never earns anything for his torture. Don't get me wrong - jobs suck - but compared to school, they are not even in the same league of suckness.
This wasn't always the case (only because of the lack of availability of the tech), but now should be obvious. CCTV are all over the place, as well as RFID tracking of students' locations, facial recognition, and transparent backpacks. With these kinds of things normalized, how likely are those kids to resist the technological slavery system when they are already adults? I say, very little chance. And it seems that schools are the introductory places for new spy tech. The same one that will later be implemented everywhere else. At least, that's where they've put CCTV here first.
Yes, I am talking about vaccines. It's been long shown they are potentially toxic (watch the movie Vaxxed II) and don't even work for preventing the diseases they're given against. And yet, they are required to attend school. Vaccination campaigns teach your kid that their body is property of the government and the pharmaceutical industry, which will now decide the kinds of substances that go into it. I don't know about others, but it was traumatizing for me to have unknown stuff injected into my blood, for no stated reason and without consideration for my feelings or concerns. At least they are not (yet) enforcing COVID vaccines, which are 12 times more likely to get a side effect than all other vaccines combined - and the severity is also worse. But stupid parents can still decide to give them on their own, and will surely be pressured to do so. And as with the spying, how likely it is that those force-vaxxed kids will resist mandates when they are adults?
Let's check out some justifications for the school uniforms. Flying over to the United Arab Emirates, we find:
The unified appearance aims to provide a sense of equality and justice amongst all pupils, regardless of backgrounds or social status and to manifest the UAE's national and cultural identity.
Is your whole cultural and national identity reduced to white shirt and black trousers? Weak. As for the other justifications - you can't disappear poverty by equalizing clothes; only give the illusion of doing so. But even that doesn't work as the richer kids will bring their expensive smartphones, jewelry, travel by car, etc. So the poor kids will still feel worse than the rich ones but will also lose the benefit of wearing the clothes they like, even if they are cheap ones. Therefore we see that the policy of school uniforms not only does not accomplish what it sets out to (presumably, making the poor kids feel better about their poverty) but even makes the situation worse. School uniforms are just a bandage above the actual problems - the poverty and the capitalist notions of worth; and the bandage doesn't even stick. Of course, not every school has such things and they might not be enforced in the same way. But they can get pretty heavy, as well; this US school pretty much defines the whole look of your kid:
Belts: First, second, and third grade students must wear belts with shirts tucked inside pants, shorts, and skirts. Pre-K and Kindergarten students may wear elastic waist paints.
So, you must wear a freaking belt. I've never done so in my life, they are pointless and uncomfortable. I don't see any justification (even a stupid one) for their enforcement, either.
Boy’s Hair: Hair must be clean and well groomed. Prohibited items include bandannas, hair wraps/scarfs, large headbands, extremes in hairstyles (discretion of administration), unnatural human hair colors, lines, letters, or designs shaved in the head. Hair arranged in a manner detrimental to the performance of normal educational activities will be prohibited. Hair must be kept out of the eyes.
Girl’s Hair: Prohibited items include bandannas, hair rollers, hair wraps/scarfs, large headbands, extreme hairstyles (discretion of administration), unnatural human hair colors, lines, letters, or designs, shaved in the head. Hair arranged in a manner detrimental to the performance of normal educational activities will be prohibited.
Not Allowed: Purses, tattoos, false or long nails, sunglasses, oversized clothing, hats, large or hazardous jewelry.
You can't even tie your hair or grow your natural nails. There is zero point to this except destroying a kid's individuality and making him feel like a cog in the machine. The psychological damage will surely spill over into adulthood, as well.
Critics of the schooling system have usually focused on the general dumbing down of education or the particulars of the curriculum, such as the teaching / non-teaching of modern evolutionary theory or foreign languages (this is very common in Europe, which often teaches two additional ones). These are - at best - side issues; all those critics are still fine with the general curriculum system, which is the actual problem. They are fine with all the disgusting things I've mentioned in the intro and other sections, as long as one of their favorite subjects is being taught the way they want to. It is like wanting your head cut off, as long as the scythe is of your favorite color.
Okay, this has been rotting here for way too long, so I want to get to the point. School is designed to make people tolerate abuse and not resist - "education" provides plausible deniability. This is why it's so important to prevent the kids from standing, talking, or making any of their own decisions. Because this is the kind of populace the elites want. The one that takes their vaccines, works their shitty jobs, votes for their abusive rulers - all without a squeak. And ten years of obedience training in school creates exactly such people. "Education" is an almost perfect excuse, since who doesn't want their kid to be "educated"? But when you dig deep into it, no real learning happens in school - so we have to seek explanation elsewhere. And obedience training provides the perfect one.