A number of things can be done, in terms of helping kids who are unable to do well in formal education.
The first thing that can be done, to help kids who are unable to do well in formal education, is helping them discover talents they may have in other areas.
The second thing that can be done, to help kids who are unable to do well in formal education, is putting in place measures to ensure that their self-esteem doesn’t get a beating.
The third thing that can be done, to help kids who are unable to do well in formal education, is enrolling them for technical training, so that they can serve the society in other ways. The society doesn’t just need people who can work with their brains. The society also needs people who can work with their hands. Even when doing hi-tech things, it is important to remember that there are always people working hard with their hands to complete the works. For instance, when you make a cash withdrawal from an ATM, or when you load money into a card there is someone behind the scene who services the ATM machines, and this, for the most part, is working using the hands.
Several methods can be used, to ensure that kids love education.
The first method that can be used, to ensure that kids love education, is that of discouraging the teachers from mistreating the kids at school. In countries where learners are mistreated, and where corporal punishment is used in school, kids tend to start hating school, leading to a situation where in some cases, the kids actually drop out of school. Needless to say, this is not conducive to talent acquisition by the nation. A nation where some bright kids are leaving school due to fear of corporal punishment is unlikely to be successful in the achievement of its development blueprint.
The second method that can be used, to ensure that kids love education, is that of coming up with learner-friendly teaching techniques. For all levels of learning, there are teaching techniques that can be used to make the whole learning process fun, and these need to be used consistently.
The third method that can be used to ensure that kids love education is that of consistently showing them how education can improve their living conditions. The idea is to get the kids to be self-motivated in their pursuit for education, and if it is done well, the results can be simply amazing.
Contrary to what many of us imagine, education – especially at the elementary school level — isn’t just about pumping facts into the heads of children. Accordingly, there are three types of education that are given in every good elementary school.
The first type of education that is given in every good elementary school is that of intellectual education. This is where kids are taught facts, and also where they are taught how to look for the facts by themselves.
The second type of education that is given in every good elementary school is that of physical education.
The third type of education that is given in every good elementary school is that of moral education. This revolves around ethics, and through minor practical examples, kids can be taught to be thinking about the ethical implications of every thing they consider doing before actually going ahead to do it. If everybody had this sort of education, things like the stringent Gmail.com security measures that have been put place within the Gmail source code wouldn’t have to be put in place, as nobody would be inclined to compromise email security. But thanks to poor morals, we end up in a situation where there are lots of people with evil motivations, leading to a situation where security is a huge industry.
A good education system has certain qualities.
Firstly, a good education system helps the learners to become curios. Then it helps the learners get ideas on how to satisfy that curiosity on their own. It doesn’t purport to give learners all the information they need. It builds the foundation for lifelong (self-motivated) learning.
Secondly, a good education system helps the learners to acquire certain practical competencies. A good education system doesn’t just focus on the theoretical stuff, leading to information overload. It also has practical elements: where students are taught how to do things. A person who has gone through a good education system can write a letter sensibly. A person who has gone through a good education system can dress sensibly, as occasions demand. A person who has gone through a good education system can draw a budget and actually stick to it.
Thirdly, a good education system has equity. It doesn’t discriminate against the poor: such that the poor end up getting one quality of education, even as the rich get another quality of education. Of course, we have some education systems that operate in this way. The end result is usually the perpetuation of poverty: as education would otherwise have been the only sure path to upward mobility.
Governments tend to invest very heavily in education. There are three reasons for that.
The first reason as to why governments invest heavily in education is something to do with the fact that they know that properly educated citizens are easier to govern. They go a step further to ensure that there are lessons about patriotism and the need to respect the authorities in the curriculums, thus protecting their governance interests further.
The second reason as to why governments invest heavily in education is something to do with the fact that they know that the return on educational investment can be extremely high: as educated people tend to be more economically productive, and hence capable of paying higher taxes.
The third reason as to why governments invest heavily in education is something to do with the fact that they see doing so as part of their social contract with the people. The said contract is akin to the www.gmail.com contract which you get into when you acquire a Gmail username. It is a contract where Google guarantees that it will give you webmail service, and you guarantee that you will put up with its ads. Similarly, a government has a contract where it has to provide services to the people (including education), in exchange for taxes and allegiance.
The educational systems in place all over the world can be seen as fall into two broad categories, at the most fundamental level.
The first type of educational systems we see in the world is that of those that mainly promote rote learning. Under this scheme of things, the teacher is seen as the bearer of knowledge, and the students are expected to tap into that knowledge unquestioningly. Under this scheme of things, students with the best memories tend to do very well: because success under this system revolves around being able to memorize facts and retrieve them at exam time. This model is often used by insecure governments that are afraid of having intellectual populations. Such systems of education are not totally useless. They are the systems used by the Asian Tiger economies, and they still produce productive citizens. Note that, thanks to the outsourcing business model, these are the people who you may end up dealing with, should you make a phone call looking for, say, Ymail.com help on any one of the Ymail FAQs.
The second type of educational systems we see in the world is that of those that mainly promote creative thinking. Under this model, the role of the teacher is simply that of stimulating the students to think for themselves.
It is in the interest of the government to ensure that the children of the poor get an education. That is because, sincerely speaking, uneducated members of the population can be (in the eyes of the elites) a social liability. They are likely to be more vulnerable to crime, more vulnerable to poverty, and more resistant to population control. And if you venture into any common point of access to social services, chances are that these are bound to be the majority of people there: on account of their lack of education, which then predisposes them to poverty.
One way in which the government can ensure that the children of the poor get an education is by establishing schools where education is accessible free of charge.
Another way in which the government can ensure that the children of the poor get an education is by giving vouchers through which the children of the poor can access subsidized education. These can work along the same lines as food stamps.
Yet another way in which the government can ensure that the children of the poor get an education is by coming up with a law that makes it mandatory for children to be taken to school. Before doing this though, the poor have to empowered to actually take the children to school: otherwise accusations of injustice would come up.
One of the things that are likely to determine how well nations do in the long run is the quality of education given to their citizens. And there are five strategies through which governments can ensure that their citizens receive quality education.
The first strategy through which governments can ensure that their citizens receive quality education is that of investing in educational infrastructure.
The second strategy through which governments can ensure that their citizens receive quality education is that of employing well trained teachers.
The third strategy through which governments can ensure that their citizens receive quality education is that of investing in proper curriculum development. The overall educational philosophy also needs to be well thought out: like where the question as to what the end product is supposed to be is addressed.
The fourth strategy through which governments can ensure that their citizens receive quality education is that of involving all stakeholders in the learning process: as opposed to leaving it to the teachers and the students alone.
The fifth strategy through which governments can ensure that their citizens receive quality education is that of putting in place proper mechanisms for teacher supervision. If the teachers are left to their own devices, they (like any other workers) may end up not doing what is expected of them: hence the need for educational inspectors.
The cost of education varies a great deal from one place to another. Even within the same place, the cost of education can vary considerably, from course to course, and from institution to institution. We venture to look at the main things that affect the cost of education.
The first thing that affects the cost of education is government policy on the same. This is where, for instance, you may have the government subsidizing education: leading to a situation where the cost of education ends up being very low.
The second thing that affects the cost of education is demand. This is how we end up with courses that are in great demand costing more than courses whose demand is low.
The third thing that affects the cost of education is the nature of education in question. This is how end up with high quality educational generally costing more than low quality education. That is because high quality education costs more to provide (in terms of the necessary inputs) than low quality education, whose provision may only require a teacher and a textbook.
The fourth thing that affects the cost of education is the nature of the general economy. In advanced economies, where things are generally expensive, we tend to have a situation where education too turns out to be fairly expensive.