Guest Blogger: Is This Really Learning?

The following is a piece written by Waukee High School student, Nalini Bhramdat. Nalini shared the piece from her english class as they worked on authentic writing. You can read more about her findings about school on her website. Problem: In high school, we do not learn essential survival skills that we need once we graduate. For example, we will not know how to file taxes, how to vote, how to balance our checking account, or do anything with banking, how to manage our loans for college, how to do basic emergency things with your car, or how to buy a house or car. High school is suppose to be a place where we further our education so we can begin our lives. There is only one solution for all these problems, that is to teach us in high school. In history class we could learn how to vote and what political parties are. We talk about political parties and who runs against whom, but we do not clearly understand everything. We could have more accounting classes, the accounting classes get full rather quickly and understanding how to manage your money is important. Fifth grade is the last time I ever did anything with money and the real world. We went to JA Biztown, where we managed our money and had a job for a day. We cashed in our paychecks and understood the process of having a job and working. Also we should learn how to take out loans that will benefit us the best. It shouldn’t be a surprise that we are not born knowing how to take out loans for college. In some classes we are able to design our homes and take care of children but we do not know how to purchase a home and we do not realize how big of a purchase it is. Most juniors drive to school and we drive to school and to our friends house but what happens if we get a flat tire on the way? Well of course we call our parents and start freaking out. Yes, maybe we could learn outside of school but school is like having a full time job and even after we spend eight hours in the school we have to go home and do homework AND have time to socialize. These are possible solutions for students who leave high school and enter college completely clueless.

"I'm almost 100% sure that if I had the option just to take classes that interested me I would do so much better in school." -Student

"School is not even about learning anymore, it's about passing and getting good grades." -Student

Yes, it is kind of ridiculous that we know pythagorean and theorem coming out of high school but we do not know how to get ourselves out of simple situations. The fact that if you ask most first year college student if they know how to do these tasks they will answer “no”. If you do not see this as a potential problem then you should not wonder why so many people go into bankruptcy, and lose their homes, and have an extensive amount of debt.