April 26, 2010

Are Private Schools the Future?

TECHNOLOGY - As the gap between the rich and poor grows there is increasing number of parents who opt for private schools for their children's educational needs.

There are benefits to private schooling, namely:
#1. Networking with other well-to-do people.
#2. Better teachers.
#3. Better equipment / computers / etc.
#4. More money for extra curricular activities.
#5. More extra curricular activities. ie. Ski trips, etc.
However there are other issues to worry about. Snobbishness and naivete, having been in a pampered and sheltered atmosphere for learning.

There's also religious-oriented private schools, which leave the students with a biased opinion on religion... a tendency to be an intolerant religious bigot.

However there is new "specialty schools" which are becoming increasingly popular. Artsy schools, drama schools, ballet school, tech schools, etc. It rather assumes that the children already know what they want to be at a young age... unless of course their parents have decided this for them.

Helicopter Parents Vs Negligent Parents

There is also two more reasons why parents would be tempted towards private schooling. Parents who hover and often control their children (often called Helicopter Parents) want their kids to be successful, pampered and live vicariously through their kids. These kids however are often so spoiled they don't know how to take care of themselves without their parents helping them constantly.

For the complete reverse however... parents who care little about their kids and don't want the stress, there is the temptation to send their kids to private boarding school because it eliminates the need for them to spend time with their children. The end result is children who feel like they've been rejected and weren't good enough to make their parents happy. If its an all girl or an all boys school there is also the added problem of being socially inept around the opposite sex.


Seriously, who want to wear a school uniform? Its one step away from military school. I wouldn't be surprised if most of them graduate with a poor ability to dress themselves properly or match colours.

Tiered Education

What seems to be happening in wealthy countries is a system whereby students are being segregated into different tiers of special schools.
1. Public Schools, general purpose.
2. Publicly funded Religious Schools (ie. The Ontario Catholic School Board).
3. Publicly funded Specialty Schools (ie. Rosedale Heights School of the Arts).
4. Publicly funded Schools for the Gifted (students with high IQs).
5. Privately owned Religious Schools.
6. Privately owned Specialty Schools.
7. Private / Boarding Schools for Girls / Boys / Unisex.
8. Private Schools for the well-off.
9. Private Schools for the super-rich.
10. Uniquely prestigious Private Schools (ie. The National Ballet School of Canada).
So assuming our society continues to grow in wealth, with a growing middle class / higher standards of living we could see a lot more parents opting for special schools in an effort to pamper their kids.

The problem with this system however is how it has a tendency to decimate the public school system, resulting in cutbacks in funding and a lowering of standards. Governments in North America seem to be chopping education, meanwhile in Europe and Asia the competition is so fierce that parents are sending their kids to special aftershool institutions and hiring private tutors.

See Also
Five Reasons why Private Schools Produce Tomorrow's Tech Leaders
Disaster Capitalism in Brazil's Education System
Privatizing Education in New Orleans
Privatizing Education in China
The Impact of Disaster Capitalism on England's Education System
The Impact of Disaster Capitalism on Hong Kong's Education System
Privatization in Sweden's Education System
The Commodification of Ontario Students
Disaster Capitalism in the United States
The Erosion of Public Schools in Ontario
Funding Ontario's Schools

1 comment:

  1. Good post guys. I also like the piece you published this wknd in the Tech eZine on Lilith Galleries about how and why private school will produce tomorrow's tech leaders and I think that author is bang on target. Anybody that ever gets a tour of St. Andrew's College in Aurora Ontario will come away a believer. Its like Star Fleet Academy in there already...


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