What’s the Point of Going to School?

As we evaluate emerging tools and technologies for students and teachers, it is important to take a step back and consider the big picture. What should students be getting out of school in the long run? What is considered a successful education? These questions and more were raised at Be Social Change’s education tech event in New York last week.

“The Future of Education: Innovation in K-12 Learning,” was the second event in a three-part series and took place last week at the Avenues: The World School, a private school that just opened this school year in the Chelsea neighborhood. The panel cialis and viagra alternatives included leaders from the Office of Innovation at the NYC Department of Education, Avenues, The Future Project, and The Academy for Software Engineering in NYC.

The heart of the discussion centered around the purpose of education as panelists considered how teachers can inspire students and ultimately prepare them for life after school. Many panelists agreed that the goal of school today should be to create life-long learners and guide youth to be valuable members of cialis and empty stomach society.

The event kicked off with the audience breaking into small groups to discuss a transformative experience in their own education. Most people agreed that creative experiences, moments outside the classroom walls or experiences that opened up their eyes to something they would become truly passionate about were the most memorable and can viagra be taken with alcohol meaningful experiences in everyone’s school careers. This opening exercise laid the groundwork for a discussion about how we

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could potentially improve and transform formal education.

As the discussion unfolded, panelists began to question our current standards and assessments in education. Some asserted that the idea of standards has grown to have a negative connotation as a restrictive checklist of skills that students must know or hoops that teachers must jump through. Leigh Ann Sudol-DeLyser, Computer Science Teacher & Consultant at The Academy for Software Engineering NYC, explained that originally standards were implemented to help teachers — who are focused on the day-to-day individual well-being of their students — better understand the quickly evolving outside world beyond just textbooks. Andrea Coleman, CEO of the Office of Innovation at the NYC District of Education, explained that standards have consistently presented a challenge because we must choose between assessing breadth or depth of knowledge. This led to cialisonline-online4rx the question of whether we are measuring the right accomplishments in the first place. Some asserted that, instead, we should we be considering softer skills such as compassion, character, honesty, and creativity, that mold students to become admirable citizens, neighbors or leaders.

Overall the discussion forced everyone to ask themselves, “what is the purpose of an education anyways? What do you wish you had gotten out of thirteen or more years of schooling? And what kind of education do you want future generations to experience?”

One suggestion that emerged from the talk was that we need to teach students how to fail and then persevere through difficult challenges. Some panelists felt that school should connect students to the outside world through internships and connections with local businesses in the community.

Tim Shriver, Dream Director at the The Future Project, believes that school should inspire students to help them find their purpose in life. The Future Project website notes that “nearly 70% of students in this pharmacyonline4better.com nation feel school isn’t relative to their lives.” Furthermore, “one in every four drop out.” Tim suggested that schools should help students find their true passion. He sees value in letting students take initiative to pursue projects outside a traditional curriculum, whether that be to design a robot or execute a fashion show.

Perhaps it is time we all reconsider what school is for and how we measure each student’s success. What do you think the purpose of school should be? We’d love to hear your thoughts below.