Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Go to a private school or study Russell Brand?

The OCR want A-levels to study Russell Brand and Dizzie Rascal. Why not? I studied An inconvenient truth by Al Gore at university and I am not a virulent ecological hippie...sorry I meant to say a Greenpeace activist. In fact, reading Gore's horrible and overly dramatic pseudo scientific nonsense helped me to understand how man-made pollution can not be resolved by puny collectivist action enforced by governments (aka: More taxes!) as the American ex-vice president would like us to believe. Studying can do no harm. It is not because you study something or someone that you have to agree with the ideas related to the studied subject. I do not think studying Brand's use of the English language could cause any harm to intelligent kids; studying Dizzie Rascal's version of English is probably a joke and nobody noticed the sarcasm.

The real problem remains: Why is it a requirement to follow the instructions of the OCR's exam board and force teachers and tutors to include those texts in their reading lists?
Can you imagine all those future university students forming the flamboyant “Russell Brand Society” to advance a deeper understanding of Brand's Literary importance for the 21st century?
And all that because there was a strictly regulated reading list to follow and they did not learn about real literature.

So, unless you think everyone should study the mentioned gentleman's use of English, you should not be in favour of forcing teachers to work with that kind of boring and insipid material.
Is there another option?
For a while now, independent/private schools seem to be opting for alternatives to the UK A-levels. The reason being that the state forces teachers to teach things that do not encompass with their ethos.
Would it not be great if parents would be able to send their kids to schools where teachers can teach what they deem important? Surely teachers who can teach what they want will be greatly motivated to find more exciting stuff than Russell Brand's video arguing against drug penalization knowing that he calls for stronger state regulations in one of his world famous interviews.

I remember well, when I was a kid, I was very shocked by the video for “another brick in the wall” by Pink Floyd. The video shows kids falling into a meat grinder and being turned into mince meat.
It is a surprise that today, the generations that grew up listening to such lyrics as: We don't need no education, we don't need no thought control still think that reducing the individual to a pile of homogeneously compressed and slushy pink paste is a good thing.

Education is important and it is great that nowadays so many people can have access to it. But should we give all the credit to the state? Has the state really helped people to have an education or has it not in fact indoctrinated generations and bound them with invisible shackles?
Can we say that learning from Russell Brand is really a form of liberation of the mind and the individual for anyone? I am unsure.

The fact is: if the state was not involved in education, then independent and private schools would have a larger market. As soon as schools open and try to get as many students as possible, concurrence would drive prices down to more adequate figures for the general public. 
The rich kids would go to the expensive schools anyway, but the other kids would have the opportunity to access better and more specialized education too. Also, schools would be able to teach what they want, people would chose the school that fits the education they want to provide to their children and kids would be happier learning in a school with teachers who see that their ideas are valuable. We should take into account, as well, that there is always people who want to help voluntarily and, surely, cheap or free schools could exist even without the state. Furthermore the state would not need to tax millions of pounds for a failing educational system anymore and that money would remain in the pockets of the taxpayers, who in turn, would probably chose how to spend their money wisely instead of paying for kids to watch Russell Brand blabbing about his socialist ideas, pushing for state oppression and all that whilst covering himself with golden crosses which he wears with such “elegance”.

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