Reader Gordon Wilder wonders why we lost sight of the
purpose of education: “My view: People have forgotten what real
education is about, the search for ultimate values: good, truth,
beauty. To value integrity, love etc. It is searching out the best
ideas of humanities greatest minds, greatest teachers. It is NOT
about passing test scores. When this first came out – the “nation
at risk” era, we laughed. Pretty soon they will be having classes
on how to pass tests. That is not funny anymore. It is reality. Has
the era of corporate leadership which took us to the brink of
worldwide financial collapse, within hours, the panacea for our
problems. Is it that we are not producing enough scientists and
mathematicians or that 50% of marriages – when they occur – are
collapsing, that 23% of our children live in poverty, that our
health care is amongst the worst in the world, ad nauseum. How do
we view our children, as objects, widgets, into which we pour
government – corporate – approved facts or as human beings to reach
their highest potential as human beings? How do we define
education? Who defines it, scholars and educators or politicians?
What yardstick do we use to measure success, test scores, or lives
lived to their fullest?”