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Showing posts from August, 2020

The immediate purpose of schools is child care. This is essential, virus or no

We often hear teachers are invaluable since they raise our future generations. And they do. This is their long-term value.But this is not the immediate value of schools. The immediate value is that people cannot go to work unless someone watches their children. If there is no child care, the economy stops.Different countries value education differently. South Korea values it highly. Teachers are well-paid and treated like superstars. This makes the pressure on children very high, starting from early childhood. There is the stereotype of South Korean students committing suicide over less than ideal exam performance.In the US, we emphasize education less. This is not necessarily bad. A large portion of what schools teach is not useful. Folks like to believe that schools have magical powers to make people smart, like medicine has magical powers to cure. In truth, the useful parts of schooling are socialization, certification, and the basic skills everyone needs. Beyond that, schools don&…