Home > Uncategorized > 10 Ways Public School Destroys Free Thinking

10 Ways Public School Destroys Free Thinking

In my never ending crusade to read everything everywhere, I came across this list on Atheist Nexus. Not being an Atheist nor considering it to be a nexus for anything other than preaching without the God references, there are still some interesting things to be had there, this is one of them. Be careful, there’s a very high truth content here.

Of course there are some things I disagree with, but none the less it seems to me to paint a good picture of what the system accomplishes. I don’t think public school systems intend on it, none the less it’s the result.

10 Ways Public School Destroys Free Thinking
1. In school, children are taught to wait to be told what to think and do, rather than being encouraged to show initiative and pursue their own ideas.
2. School teaches children to never become too deeply involved. The bell will ring just when they’re engulfed in learning about the solar system to tell them it is time to start learning how to dissect a sentence. A child learns that no subject is truly meaningful or interesting, and therefore learns not to be truly interested in anything meaningful.
3. The school system fosters conformity rather than curiosity, because curiosity leads to questioning ideas and free thinking. This is a volatile and dangerous path because it will inevitably lead to the destruction of a carefully calibrated system of control. Therefore, curiosity is not part of the curriculum.
4. In school, the practice of religion is not allowed because this would be heresy. For, school itself establishes its own set of rules and commandments that religious beliefs would inherently contradict.
5. Our modern school system weighs down children with homework and endless projects, making it impossible for them to find time to learn from parents and community members outside of school. This denies children what they need to become whole people that can function as productive members of their own community and of society as a whole.
6. School children don`t have the privilege of deciding what they believe and what values are important to them. Instead, they are instructed to be close minded and accept whatever they are told.
7. In school, children learn how to take orders and remain complacently obedient. They aren`t given the opportunity to develop their own moral compass to help them decide what is right or wrong.
8. The school system uses grades and statistics to label children and produce formulaic adults. Children are taught that they need to be told what they are worth. Individualism is discouraged, as is viewing themselves and others outside of these labels.
9. School as we know it actually encourages a caste system that divides children (and eventually adults) into categories based on its system of labels. Free thinkers are often labeled as misfits and are told to conform so they can be useful citizens.
10. Children in school learn very early on that free speech is a farce. Fundamental human rights do not exist in school unless they are granted by the school authorities. Children are taught that basic human rights are actually privileges that can be revoked at any time if they do not surrender to the chain of command.
It is clear that if we rely on public schools to educate our children, free thinking individuals will become extinct. Free thinking is a foundational ingredient for success, invention, progress and culture. These things cannot be taught through a curriculum but through life itself.
Categories: Uncategorized
  1. 2011/04/15 at 19:53

    There may certainly be elements of truth in this list here. Certainly, teachers like children to behave, for instance. And don’t get me started on homework overload.

    But if this is your school experience, you’re needing a change at the board of ed.

    As an education major, many of these are ideals that are stressed as positives and desirables: In education today, we WANT children to be independent, self-motivated learners. That is the goal.

    We WANT them to develop internal motivators for studying and behaving, this is what educators strive to teach.

    Some of these traits might be found (especially in more conservative, old-school schools), but it’s not in keeping with best practices being taught at the college level or encouraged in our Kentucky schools, I can tell you that.

  2. 2011/04/15 at 19:56

    The one place in my school system that you would be most likely to find these traits are in the Traditional School programs, where discipline, rote repetition, adherence to strict rules and fitting in to the system as it exists are the values specifically taught/encouraged.

    The school board and state educators, so far as I’ve seen, actively DISCOURAGE these traditional magnets but they’re a big hit with more conservative parents, so they keep them around.

    Is this what you’ve seen, or are you very familiar with the education system where you live?

  3. 2011/04/16 at 01:46

    I think this list is pretty extreme. It’s certainly not my experience.

    With that said, a lighter version was my experience, I don’t for a second think it is the intention of the school system I was in to do this. It was however the result of the ridiculous crap they have students everywhere do.

    The most striking point on the list and the one I most strongly recognize, is number 10.

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