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  • Elizabeth Barrett-Zahn

Power of Education


“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” Nelson Mandela

What is the role of a teacher? To guide, to illuminate ideas, to develop skills, to provide practice, to challenge thinking, or to turn out economically viable workers? To teach is the most human of interactions. A give and take between both parties intertwined with thoughts, preconceived notions and emotions. As educators is it our goal to get students to jump through an assembly-line of assessment hoops, discounting economic boundaries, as we minimize societal land mines? To teach to the test is forgetting one important element – the most important and critical element of the entire equation…the student.

How to improve our faulty education system? Should we start with dismantling the system with blindfolded vigor believing that all is bad and all should be restructured? How and why did we get to where we are now? What is the history of our current system? What has been put in place and why? And then, what is our philosophy of education? What is our philosophy of educating people? Do we believe in the standard that ALL can learn or do we believe we should use a reverse triage model to focus our efforts on the potentially employable members? We need to first SAY what we believe to begin the process of creating a successful system. Which system do we wish to be part of? One driven by economics and business principles of bottom-line measurements or one where people, children, students are considered capable of growth and development.

Education is a powerful weapon. A weapon that all should be afforded.


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