The education system overall is faulty because it does not provide the knowledge we need and it does not provide knowledge in the right fashion.
An ideal system would be able to give to the human race the knowledge that we need to be able to live and flourish sustainably. For that we would need to understand ourselves and our surroundings, which many people with PhD’s do not.
The second important fact has been mentioned many times by scholars like sir Ken Robinson, we are not all the same! We are not all gifted for the same things, different things need to be taught in different ways and last but not least we should all be taught two things: problem solving, communication and cooperation.
Young children should be taught about the environment, what it can do, what we can do with it sustainably, and which things should never be done. They need to be taught how to listen and learn about themselves, their own bodies and families and friends. The fact that even adults do not know what the right kind of food needs to be eaten in order to stay healthy and that projects by Jamie Oliver – trying to force schools into serving actual food even exist, speaks volume about where we are with even the basic stuff. We do not know how we function.
And we do not know how to communicate properly. Listen to an average college graduate, can they express themselves properly without umm, aaahh, like, you know…? It seems stupid, but if we added all those to see how much time we’ve spent and how many miss-information has been spread, how badly we communicate our own feelings and experiences and ideas… Mind-blowingly bad situation with communication. When geniuses can’t pass their knowledge on, when wars are started because compromise can not be negotiated… Stupidity due to lack of communication skills has a lot to do with it.
And then there is the problem solving part. How many people understand how the world they live in even works? How can they be productive members of society and good progress if they don’t? How can someone vote for or against building a nuclear power plant or a wind power plant or abortion or…? What about when things go wrong? Are we taught to identify the problem correctly, summarize and assess it, look for best possible solutions and compare them to choose the one that is absolutely the best?
The education system should be compulsory but completely modular and adaptable to the needs of people and the environment. It should gradually introduce children to themselves, so that they would understand their bodies, how the world in general works, how to communicate on a basic level, learn from past mistakes of others and work together in solving problems. Classes should always be as practical as possible, making the learning experience a process in which the people who are learning participate actively, and through which the human brain forms as many different associations as possible for the subject being taught. Trying stuff in different ways, solving problems. Preferably in groups. Age should not matter, money should not matter. And the learning process must not end at one point, it should be a part of every job.