2012 was once again an interesting year for Public Education. From Delaware to Chicago to British Columbia and back to Ontario, pundits and the politicians sold the story that all the struggles our youth encounter can be laid squarely on the shoulders of every teacher that has ever walked this earth. Just short of being the spawn of satan himself, teachers are source of all that is wrong in this world, especially as it pertains to today’s youth. unemployment, failure to launch, mental health issues, drug and alcohol problems… you name it, it is the education systems fault.
I however, would beg to differ. Yes I know, as one of satan’s classroom cronies, my objection is predictable but read on, I might actually make some sense by the end of this post.
I see education as being waaaaay down on the list of roadblocks the youth of today face. From the bedroom in which our kids are conceived, to the boardroom in which they are received, our children have more stacked against them than just what people perceive as an inadequate public education system. In fact, I would say there is simply one roadblock our youth face and that is, we have stolen their adulthood or at least postponed it indefinitely.
The obvious question then becomes, who is an adult? and I found a satisfactory answer in a Psychology Today article entitled Who is an “adult?” The path from adolescence into adulthood. March 3, 2010 by Jennifer L. Tanner, Ph.D.
…it became apparent that becoming adult was about, well, becoming. Across cultures, Arnett’s findings have been replicated. Accordingly, an adult is someone who-accepts responsibility, makes independent decisions, and becomes financially independent.
The article goes on to discuss the precise thing I am talking about here and what I refer to as the Abyss of Suspended Adulthood
The funny thing is, the evidence is all there right in front of us. Most of it already identified, researched and publicized. Anyone who isn’t seeking election or is remotely sober, should be able to see that education isn’t the biggest problem our youth face but alas society is myopic. Scapegoats are easier to understand then our own miserable misdeeds.
Although the central issue here is the deadultation (new word) of our youth, the process has three parts working in concert to sideline anyone under the age of 30.
- Post Secondary or Starve
- An Economy of dependence
- The Engineered Child