So I just read this New York Times article “Teachers: Will We Ever Learn?” by Jal Mehta, which touches on the current poor state of education in the U.S., despite a variety of efforts like No Child Left Behind and others, our heroic attempts at reviving our schools haven’t brought us any closer to a more effective school system.
It was 1983 when the government released its alarming report A Nation at Risk which warned of the impending decline of our nation’s education system. It was precisely 10 years earlier that the US government, at the recommendation of the Gates Commission Report, instituted what would come to be known as the country’s All-Volunteer Army. After several years of fits and starts, and despite some reservations, the All-Volunteer Army became a success, a model that the US government stands by to this day.
So I’m thinking about our nation’s schools. Maybe we should try an All-Volunteer Student Body. Let’s forget about compelling children to get an education. Our high school graduation rate is abysmal as it is. The percentage of high school graduates is half of what it was in 1970, and that’s with half of the population we have now! Our scholastic achievement indicators would certainly improve if we didn’t include all of those little whiners that don’t even want to be there.
Look, it may sound silly at first, but hear me out. If you only had students who actually wanted to learn things show up for school, you’d only need half the teachers. So two things immediately happen; you’ll have classrooms filled with eager students and because of the dwindling class size, you’ll have had the opportunity to fire all of those crappy over-paid teachers and keep only the good ones for your good students.
You might wonder what we do with all of the students who choose not to go to school. That’s obvious, they would be conscripted into an All-Volunteer Consumer Economy. These ne’er-do-wells would simply buy all the shit at malls they would buy anyway, only now they won’t waste valuable resources hanging around our schools and classrooms. Instead, they will keep our industries strong by continuing to create consumer demand.
As for the esteemed graduates of our new school system, they will have the pick of any job or college they want with much higher wages and salaries, not only because their education will be so much better, but demand from employers will sky-rocket because the All-Volunteer Economy will have sucked away all of those non-productive employees that just want to party anyway. With newfound income, our young, superbly educated workforce will be able to support their good-for-nothing lazy-ass friends and maybe us old farts as well. Finally, a perfect world.