The Effectiveness of Education Systems

Adya Mohapatra, Copy Editor

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Once society hit the modern age, education became a fundamental building block that people never stopped making additions to. Over the many years, education has taken on many forms in various places, but there is still no concrete formatting that is deemed the best.

In today’s day and age, most high schoolers’ lives revolve around their education. As the standards continue to raise and people’s lives become increasingly hectic, one begins to question the effectiveness of the education they are receiving. With many students suffering from almost chronic stress and having jam-packed schedules, people are often divided over how much they are benefiting from school. Despite the pressure, students are also finding that the road to success becomes much easier to access and descend upon because of the rigorous education they receive. Let us delve into the factors that influence education and understand what benefits education brings and what fundamental problems it has pertaining to America.

Here at Issaquah High, students find themselves happy with the fact that we are given a lot of choices as to what classes we can take and what level of difficulty they will be. For example, freshman Lena Alexander says there is a variety of things to learn here. This is also the case in many other schools in the country, and it seems like a sensible thing to have been put in place. Before deciding on a major in college, it is important to know what one is getting into, and being able to pick classes of one’s own choosing is a key part of that.

However, many people do complain about the homework load they have. Students understand that homework helps one to retain skills through practice, but many feel that they often receive busy work. Busy work is classwork that does not seem relevant to the class and usually takes up a lot of one’s time. Sophomore Anna Kiesewetter says, “When teachers give busy work, it’s not effective and should be optional.” Since high schoolers are expected to be well-rounded, they are typically busy with extracurriculars on top of their workload. Quite a few individuals believe busy work adds absolutely nothing to their learning.

Speaking of extracurriculars, people often wonder how out-of-school activities are beneficial in terms of one’s education. According to Crimson Education, they can improve one’s academic performance and allows one to explore their interests. Additionally, extracurriculars provide social opportunities and offers breaks in between doing homework and going to school. Junior Elizabeth Kaiser says, “You should be passionate about other things outside of school and be well-rounded.” Senior Nicholas Runje says, “Extracurriculars develop personality.”

Personally, I would say that having a few extracurriculars is important because, aside from school, one should have hobbies that they like to do for fun. One should be able to expand their horizons and form their own experiences. After all, experience is said to be the best teacher.

And when talking about extracurriculars, one cannot forget about its counterpart: academics. Academics are very heavily focused upon, and there tends to be some controversy about their importance. Some believe, as Kiesewetter says, “Academic intelligence and how hard you work is important for life.” The SASK School Board adds on to that idea, saying that academic success is highly connected to a positive outcome. The higher the level of one’s education, the more likely it is that they will get employed. Overall, a strong foundation is important for the level of specialization required for jobs today.

On the other hand, it is argued that every individual is different, and expecting good grades from everyone within the same school system is ridiculous. I would have to agree with that. I do think education is extremely important, and there should quite a bit of focus on academics when it comes to paving the road for one’s future. But, everyone is not given an equal opportunity to succeed as everyone has varying skills and cannot be expected to exceed at the same thing. Therefore, academics should be emphasized, but an alternative route that is equally as rigorous should be provided for those whose strengths lie elsewhere.

Overall, I would say the school system here in the U.S. does have many benefits and is well on its way to becoming effective for all. However, there are quite a few things that are lacking and need to be improved, such as stress levels. The pressure put on students sometimes decreases their potential as stress causes poorer performances and an unhealthy mental state. Some issues, such as that, are ones that may not be able to be solved. But as the education system continues to grow and develop, as can be seen by our new schedule for next year, we will be able to see how far we can push ourselves in terms of education.