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ahro0703's avatar

Do private academies harm our society?

Asked by ahro0703 (376points) July 10th, 2014

Most people these days are crazy at education. A lot of parents send their children to private academies, esecially in Korea. The people who like academies like the point that their children have a better future. However, others say that academies give stress to students. What do you think about it?

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13 Answers

CWMcCall's avatar

It’s the parents not the school that put stress on their kids to excel and make their investment into the tuition worth it.

elbanditoroso's avatar

I cannot speak for Korea. I can speak to conditions in the USA.

There are two major types of academies in the US. The first is non-sectarian, where academic excellence is the primary goal of the academy and hard work and learning are the first priorities. These academies are stressful in many cases, but very high quality and useful. They develop leaders and independent thinkers, for the most part.

The second type of academy is the religiously-based academy. These academies are built on the philosophy that schools must impart religion as well as academics. However, most of these dwell on the inculcation of religious thought as their primary goal, and only as a secondary goal do they deal with academics. As a result, a religiously motivated academy tends to dismiss science (evolution, etc.) because it does not meet the religious needs of the owners, even if it is true. THESE academies may be rigorous in demands on the student, but are not particularly effective in creating well-rounded individuals.

There are, of course, some that do both well. But not as many as one would hope.

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FlyingWolf's avatar

I don’t think they are necessarily harming our society, but I don’t think they are the panacea some people see them as.

gailcalled's avatar

I spent years in the independent secular day school world (in the US), described by @elbanditoroso accurately in his comment above. There is a large competitive admissions pool so that, for the most part, the student and the school are matched carefully. Those that are perceived to not thrive are not offered admission.

Yes, there is some stress and yes, many of the parents have to pay for matriculation, but the students chosen seem to be content, by and large. At the independent Quaker school where I worked for 12 years, there was a large scholarship program.

It was a college preparatory school, and one that sent their students to the competitive colleges and universities. One of its graduates won a Nobel Prize in physics in 2011, so he and our school were apparently a good fit.

Other outstanding graduates have been a rabbi/leader in LGBT orthodox synagogues, a master farrier, and heads of famous of rock bands,

gailcalled's avatar

edit; ...of famous rock bands.

(Add a starting pitcher for the Phillies.)

dxs's avatar

In the U.S., religious ones do. I went to a Catholic high school. Indoctrination of youth is a huge wrong and still runs rampant.
A quote from Eleanor Roosevelt: “[The purpose of education is] the acquisition of knowledge, the reading of books, and the learning of facts… [The purpose of education is] to give children a desire to learn and to teach them how to use their minds and where to go to acquire facts when their curiosity is aroused (Roosevelt).”
At religious schools, they have an agenda to push. I experienced it at my high school, but I also did some research for one of my classes on a school that was run by A.C.E. curriculum, a Christian curriculum. The way the curriculum works is that students sit in a desk facing a wall for the duration of the day and fill in a booklet. If that’s not terrible enough, the booklets tell children things like “obey authority” and “love God”. When opinions are taught as fact, we have a problem. It leads to students’ inability for critical thinking and they end up shunning skepticism and stick with their intuition. The scientific process along with basic argumentative skills are second to an immutable concept that is their religion. They can’t leave it—it makes them feel uncomfortable because the beliefs have been carved into stone in their brains since their first comprehensions. Adults, whom children are supposed to look up to, abuse children’s minds by successfully brainwashing them.
Freedom of religion? Well exactly what freedoms do the children have? In my opinion, the government should do something about this. I’ll have to come up with a resolution.

stanleybmanly's avatar

Let us not forget the elite schools where the rich and powerful send their offspring. It is still very much in fashion for the movers and shakers in the country to herd their children together. For those academically inclined, the finest education available, for those who aren’t, “connections ” are made assuring the continuation of privilege.

LostInParadise's avatar

Stress and learning do not mix well. Children come into the world having to learn a considerable amount and are eager to do it. Here is an example of how children can teach themselves if given the chance. If you do not have time to view the video, here is the gist of it. Sugata Mitra talks about how how he placed a computer in a hole in the wall in a city in India. He was hoping that it would attract the attention of the kids living on the street, which it did. Without any instruction and never having seen a computer before, they quickly learned how to use it. He did further experiments with interesting results. He found that the children, who did not speak English well, improved their knowledge of English. The children spent time teaching one another. In fact, the learning was better when there were not enough computers for everyone, forcing the children to work together. Mitra found that he could improve performance by having volunteers interact with the children and do nothing more than provide positive reinforcement. The children responded to challenges to research the answers to questions that they were given.

From speaking to teachers, I have learned that sometimes a teacher will give a recreational math problem as a reward for completing assignments. Think about this for a moment. The reward for completing what is all too often a mindless drill is the opportunity to tackle a problem that requires creative out of the box thinking. Something is very wrong here.

So what do we take away from this? Some have suggested that students do not need teachers. I strongly doubt that this is the case. It must help to have someone knowledgeable about the material to track the students’ learning and to provide guidance. The results do suggest that students are motivated to solve problems of a general nature. Solving problems provides an intrinsic reward, which can be reinforced by providing positive feedback.

The current system of having students compete with one another and providing failing grades for not mastering the material is not the way to go. The No Child Left Behind program of constant testing is not working, by the program’s own standards. Test scores are not going up. The U.S. is still in the middle of the pack in international testing. The solution is not to create more stress, but to provide an environment where students can engage in exploration and learn from their mistakes without being penalized for them.

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