I have never desired to go back to school again. I spent a lot of my life in school. I went through the standard public school then went to Technical College and the University. I was in it so long that I thought it was ‘normal’. Once I got out of school, though, I realized how much I did not like it. To go back to college, the university, or any training at all . . . no, that’s not on my list to do.
Even when I was in school I found that it was ‘insulting’ and sort of degrading. To me, it seemed almost dehumanizing. Why is this? Here’s some thoughts that come to mind:
- I was always insulted by grades. My god, it’s a friggin’ letter . . . or a number. I found it insulting that I had to spend my time ‘chasing a letter’. Besides, grades don’t measure much anyways (I wrote an article in this blog about grades called ‘Thoughts on how grades really don’t measure anything’).
- I always have to do things how they wanted, even though I felt there were other ways to do it. God help me, I didn’t dot my i’s or didn’t write it on the correct grade of paper. Everything had to be done a certain way and in the right way. There’s little chance to ‘expand’ or develop oneself. Everything had to be done according to the ‘rules’. A person could not do things according to ones judgement or inclination. I always felt that was what learning was about, learning to use your judgment and inclinations. This, I found, was not true. I found that I was continually restricted by the ‘system’. In school, a person is part of a ‘system’ and you must do what the ‘system’ says. This means that everything, such as what’s correct or not, is determined by the ‘system’. Whether it was truly correct or not didn’t seem to matter!
- It seemed like I was burdened by trivialities. There seemed to be all these small things that mattered. I often had to do papers and tests a ‘certain way’ just to make the teacher happy. In some cases, the teachers would give you a low score if you didn’t do it.
- I have to follow their ‘learning schedule’. I found my that my ‘learning schedule’ did not match theirs. It did not go in regular ‘stages’, consistent and constant. That was rare for me. This made it very difficult. I used to always joke about how “education is learning based on a time-table”.
- I found that no one really cared what you did anyways. ‘Education’ is a business . . . and it was treated like that . . . I was treated like that too.
- A lot of schooling seemed more like a social hierarchy than anything else. It was a display of someone in power and, as students, we must cower below this power. It seemed like an endless act of submission to authority, oftentimes. This, in my opinion, is not conducive to ‘learning’.
- The nonsense of the stupid little social ‘prestige’ of ‘education’ seemed to motivate many things. Everyone seemed to think that education was some great thing, that the fact they are there makes them these great people. For some people, even some of the teachers, that’s all education was about.
- There were too many people chasing money. Why do you think people really go to school? . . . to learn! I saw little of that.
- It was like a big factory, churning out ‘learned people’ like an assembly line. I was just another one of the herd to pay my tuition, and be moved along to the next semester, like a bunch of sheep.
Once I got out of school I found that I was better out of school than in. I learned and did more relevent things in a year than in some odd years at school. I seemed more productive, could do more, and achieved more. I felt I could ‘breathe’ and ‘actually do something’. School, to me, was like a big damper, a great weight upon me that restricted me, choked me, and was often strangulating. In school I felt as if I was being excruted through some hole into some preformed shape. In many ways, schooling was nothing but one big ‘red tape’: rules, regulations, schedules, grades, letters, numbers, this, that, and the other thing. I couldn’t stand it. How can someone do anything in an environment like that?
I’ve always said I would never go back to school . . . unless I really had to . . . and I never have.