What Is the Purpose of Education?


Debate about the purposes of education never seems to end.  Should young people become educated to get prepared to enter the workforce, or should the purpose of education be focused more on social, academic, cultural and intellectual development so that students can grow up to be engaged citizens? 


Knowledge of the natural and engineered environments and how people live in the world is critical to all three purposes of education. Critical thinking, creativity, interpersonal skills and a sense of social responsibility all influence success in life, work and citizenship. For example, unhappy personal relationships often spill over into the work environment, while a stressful workplace or unemployment negatively impacts family life. Uninformed disengaged citizens lead to poor policy choices that impact life, work and citizenship. To paraphrase the verse in the old song, “You can’t have one without the others.”

Each individual teacher has an opinion about what the core purpose of education should be, not only in their own classroom but also in school in general. Many issues occur when differing opinions about the purpose of education collide. It is important to recognize that other people, including many of your coworkers, administrators, and your students' parents might have a different point of view concerning what education should be all about.

Many of the lessons that schools teach are necessary for success in their students' future lives. As adults, they will need to be able to get to work on time, dress and behave appropriately, and get their work done in a timely manner. These lessons are reinforced on a daily basis in schools around the nation.
The desire to create thoughtful adults might be considered another old-school belief. However, this is held by many individuals, especially within the larger community. Students will someday be a part of a community and need the skills to exist within that society as thoughtful citizens.
 some individuals look at school in a more holistic manner. Not only do students learn information from their individual subjects, but they also learn life lessons in and out of class. Proper work etiquette should be reinforced in the classroom, students need to learn how to deal with others in a cooperative manner, and they must learn how to acquire the information they might need in the future.

Learning how to learn is one of the key elements of education. Schools need to teach students how to find the information they will need once they leave school. Therefore it is important for future success that the students understand how to find answers to any questions and problems that might arise.

While the self-esteem movement often gets ridiculed, we do want our students to feel confident about their learning abilities. This way, they not only have a firm grasp on each subject but also the confidence to apply that knowledge in everyday life. It's important to nurture a strong balance between encouraging good self-esteem and assuaging unrealistic goals. 
We may become more informed by knowledge but to be educated in its complete sense we need to be aware of the essence of being a human and that gives us a comprehensive training for life.We need to understand that the world is not just for knowing and using its resources,but also for accepting,by which I mean having a sense of aesthetic connection,a sense of attachment with the surrounding(a transparent analogy can be thought as in the movie Avatar and which can definitely be realized by meditation and yoga),with the people around you that different selves are manifestations of the same self,with the rivers,with the trees…. and this can be done only if aesthetic development of mind is given as importance as intellectual.

Having analyzed the goal or objective of education, the next question that naturally arises is about the method of imparting education.Well, we can do constant experiments with our educational system as and when required,and this is rather a detailed work of many present intellectuals but whatever be that the culture values of the country should form an integral part of the curriculum of education. The culture of India has its roots in her spiritual values. The time-tested values are to be imbibed in the thoughts and lives of the students through the study of the classics like Ramayana, Mahabharata, Gita, Vedas and Upanishads. This will keep the perennial flow of our spiritual values into the world culture and may gift future a beautiful world.This will make us a more sensitive being and prevent us from being machines that does everything insensitively to the world just to fulfill its short term benefits.

The one continuing purpose of education, since ancient times, has been to bring people to as full a realization as possible of what it is to be a human being. Other statements of educational purpose have also been widely accepted: to develop the intellect, to serve social needs, to contribute to the economy, to create an effective work force, to prepare students for a job or career, to promote a particular social or political system.

The purpose of education has always been to every one, in essence, the same—to give the young the things they need in order to develop in an orderly, sequential way into members of society. This was the purpose of the education given to a little aboriginal in the Australian bush before the coming of the white man. It was the purpose of the education of youth in the golden age of Athens. It is the purpose of education today, whether this education goes on in a one-room school in the mountains of Tennessee or in the most advanced, progressive school in a radical community. But to develop into a member of society in the Australian bush had nothing in common with developing into a member of society in ancient Greece, and still less with what is needed today. Any education is, in its forms and methods, an outgrowth of the needs of the society in which it exists.



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