Mandy Kloppers

Against Schooling



I truly believe that in the future there will be a revolutionary change in the way we educate our children. There are a growing number of professionals that are concerned about the huge limitations in the current educational system. Think Stanley Aronowitz, Alfie Kohn and John Taylor Gatto to name a few.

A military style brain washing camp to teach children how to behave and conditioning them into a ‘one size fits all’ model.
Children aren’t taught to think for themselves, talents are suppressed in favour of fitting in with peers and many teachers use sarcasm and humiliation to keep students in their place.
It gives children a skewed view of authority and turns them into mindless robots.
In my years as a counsellor I have seen a disproportionately large number of teachers. Many of them have been passionate about what they do. The problems come in when existing politics in the schools they work in overtakes and undermines the real reason they are there – to teach.
Teaching seems to be one of the worse professions for intimidation, unfair politics and favouritism. I am constantly astounded by the level of underhanded tactics that are employed by head teachers. A subtle form of bullying which then affects the teacher’s ability to teach well, which affects the students. Corruption and manipulation are rife.

Success at school is in no way an indicator of success later in life. Just look at Richard Branson!
I constantly remind my son that teachers are just people and that they get stuff wrong. This authoritarian relationship that exists makes me uneasy as teachers hold so much power.

1) One Size Fits All Approach – it just doesn’t work and those kids that don’t fit the mould may end up with low self esteem. Incorporating a sense of being a failure into their identity that will live with them well beyond their school days
2) Teacher’s Superiority – many abuse their position and punish children unfairly. They get too comfortable in their roles as the ‘Boss’ and there seems to be very little to keep this in check. Teachers stick together and there are so many ‘cover ups’.
3)Bullying is rife and on the increase. School seems to unwittingly promote a pack mentality, a survival of the fittest approach where there is little collaboration. Children feel humiliated by bullying as if there is something wrong with them.Many many children live with the daily misery with very little support. I know as I see many of these children in therapy and listen to their woeful stories of school life.

Steiner Schools go some way to addressing these problematic issues which shows there are places that are adapting, allowing happier early experiences for children.
Steiner Schools – more info

I have never met a child that loves school…there has to be another way! We force our kids to spend the early part of their lives being ‘bashed into shape’ in an environment that they hate all in the name of ‘progress’. Our experience of school leaves an indelible Psychological imprint on us for the rest of our lives, and more often than not, it is an unhappy one.

Mandy X

Additional Info: Student Liberation

Photo by Ivan Aleksic on Unsplash

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