Education in the USA
Education provides a foundation for future well-being of an individual in the current developing world. It is the form in which intelligence is obtained; thus, governments must proceed to educate their children in an optimum manner (Beach 122). In addition, government must ensure enough resources are allocated to the education sector. This will guarantee that students get high quality education, and that will make them very competitive in the labor market. This will also lead to national progress because for a country to realize its development goals, it requires application of knowledge, skills and innovations that are brought about by education.
Although all countries throughout the globe focus on enhancing the education sector, the ways in which subjects are taught varies considerably from one country to another, and it cannot be concluded that there is a single country that has the perfect education system. Even in developed countries, there are certain advantages gained from their education system as well as limitations associated with them. Thus, there is the need to ensure these limitations are addressed. This is imperative because education sector is dynamic and the government must ensure that the education system takes into account all relevant contents that can make students competitive in the job market and also provide education that can help to foster national growth.
Despite the USA being a superpower in the world, there has been an observation that the American education system does not result into the competence required for competitiveness of students from developed countries in comparison to other developed countries (Johnson 45). This has brought the US into lower ranking in terms of the quality of education provided to learners. Consequently, the country is ranked 17th among the developed countries. This implies that despite being a leading dominion, there is the need to ensure its education system is redesigned. This paper provides a proposal for the ideal education system in the USA, which if implemented can improve the quality of education drastically.
Nature of Schooling
In the United States of America, it has been suggested that students can get better education systems if terms are prolonged and students get through at least three terms in a year before proceeding to the next grade. This involves a curriculum that is taught in three months with a break in between for a period of one month (Kincheloe 67). However, the number of hours spent in classes must be kept high enough to enable students get familiar with learning environment and facilities. The design of the manner in which students attend classes should be based on a number of factors. For instance, the abilities of students should be considered by the most efficient students being allocated to specific learning environments where they don’t feel slowed down by other students who are less efficient compared with them, or those who are weaker in the subjects that other students are good at.
Generally, most students are likely to have their strong and weak subjects until they get a better understanding of them (Klein, Rice, and Levy 278). However, there are those who have the capability to understand all courses while there are those who are challenged to do that. Students are either strong, or average or weak in the definite subject. So when students are good at Mathematics, average at Geography and weak at Sciences, they are required to join the right class level for each subject. This ensures they are able to learn at the pace with other students who have the same rates of understanding possessed by them.
Choice of Subjects and Teachers
Teachers and subjects should be chosen for students based on their training competence and capabilities. Teachers who have interests and proficiency in teaching science subjects should be allocated more of those and trained to deal with issues affecting learners in the field of science. Furthermore, instructors should be provided with enough resources in the subject they teach such as books and reference materials (McKeown and Nolet 56). In the initial years in school, students can be placed in compulsory learning process where they are taught all the subjects and examined in them. In the latter years, they will develop competence in certain subjects and demonstrate weaknesses in others. At this stage, they should be allowed to specialize in the courses they have the better understanding of and continue doing only the ones of their interest in senior levels of education. There should be a policy that restricts students from changing the subjects they have specialized in, and they should get certification for their achievements in that sphere of specialization.
In addition, schools in the US should give students a wide range of options with regards to the minimum requirements for each subject (Beach 542). There should be flexibility in government’s curriculum system and it should be easy to complete. The government should not be allowed to decide the content of everything learnt at schools and there should be freedom on the use of books. Teachers should be allowed to use any book required and they should be allowed to teach what they need to teach.
The subjects taught in schools should be focused on assisting students get skills in various fields of their interest that can be useful for them in the employment world. For instance, students who have mathematical abilities should be taught more accounting and business skills that enable them work in the field of business, e.g. financial sectors (Johnson 265). In the same manner, students who show interest in technology should be taught subjects related to technology and encouraged to develop their skills in this field so that they can be used in the employment sector to secure a job.
Nature of Class Activities
Class activities in schools should be composed of both theoretical and practical knowledge. For instance, teaching of science subjects should be accompanied with laboratory experiments that expose learners to practical skills in biology (Kincheloe 321). Other class activities should involve the use of a number of reference materials for each subject taught. This implies that teachers should use a variety of information sources before they begin the act of teaching particular subjects. The teaching process should also ensure an assessment of learner’s understanding is done by providing exercises in the course of the lessons and also before a particular topic is concluded. There should be a number of facilities to perform practical classes in science subjects within the institutions of learning.
Similarly, students who do other practical subjects such as Physics and technical subjects such as Drawing should be trained on practical skills that are important in technological world (Klein, Rice, and Levy 654). For technical drawing there should be provided facilities such as drawing instruments and a room where students can practice their skills. It should also involve introducing them to technical problems in real life where their knowledge and talent can be applied. Students in the arts classes should be provided with oral and presentation skills that ensure they boost their capabilities in teaching literacy subjects after they have completed their education.
The examination procedures should involve providing the same examination but with different time to complete tasks depending on the learners’ capabilities. This is because students who are good at certain subjects can save time to study other subjects and improve their competence. Longer hours should be given to students who are slow learners in certain spheres so that they can have enough time to study them and become competent (McKeown and Nolet 543). This approach is mainly important for elementary education such as grammar schools.
However, in colleges and other higher institutions of learning, more advanced methods of examination should be used where different exams are given to students based on their capabilities, and certification is provided at the end of the examination. The certification acts as a description of the student’s level of qualification in a particular subject. It will also act as a guide to a potential employer with regards to the ability of the applicant to perform well in his organization.
Beach, Gary J. The U.S. Technology Skills Gap, + Website: What Every Technology Executive Must Know to Save America's Future. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley, 2013. Print.
Johnson, Edgar D. What About Us?: Standards-based Education and the Dilemma of Student Subjectivity. Charlotte, NC: Information Age Pub., 2011. Print.
Kincheloe, Joe L., ed. The Praeger Handbook of Urban Education. Westport, Conn: Greenwood Press, 2006. Print.
Klein, Joel I., Condoleezza Rice, and Julia Levy. U.S. Education Reform and National Security. New York: Council on Foreign Relations, 2012. Print.
McKeown, Rosalyn, and Victor Nolet. Schooling for Sustainable Development in Canada and the United States. Dordrecht: Springer, 2012. Print.