Wednesday, 2 September 2009

Competitiveness against intelligence

Schools were once seen as a place of learning where young people could experiment and explore. A place where young people could feed their minds with knowledge and where they were given freedom to research and study things which interested them. Now to me as an outsider looking in Schools seem to be more about competition than anything else.

With more people looking to stay in education after school due to the lack of jobs out there, there is a higher level of competition for these places. To get funding and a good reputation schools are pressured in to getting their grade averages up so now many schools will choose to offer subjects where it will be easier for their students to get good grades in. GCSE and A Level results can give off the illusion that the school is improving where in actual fact it could just mean less students are doing so called harder subjects or that the exams themselves are getting easier.

Now I am one for competition as young people need to know how to achieve in a competitive world as that is what the outside world will bring them after they leave education but competition shouldn’t take the lead over learning. Real intelligence can’t be measured by exam scores. If you get good grades but haven’t come through a school system which has nurtured your intelligence development it may mean that you struggle on that A Level of University course you have applied for. A grade is just a means to get on to another course or a job but if you aren’t prepared for that course or the job you are going to fail in the next stage of your life.

I think it is quite ridiculous how we can live in a world where sports days are getting banned or changed to take away competitiveness from it yet school grades and league tables are plastered all over local and national media for all to see as each school tries to out do the other.

Do you think School exams are getting easier? We would like to know your thoughts and you can share them by joining in our topic of the week by going to:

Adam Sibley
Founder of the Talented Young People organisation
"Envisage it, Believe it, Achieve it!"
”Shaking up the Youth of Today”

1 comment:

CanCan (Mom Most Traveled) said...

So true. I'm a teacher and a parent. I don't really want my children to get caught up in "competition" in a way that squashes a love for learning just for learning's sake.

They are pretty young right now (4 and 2) but i worry about when that day will come.