School as wonder, or way out

Recommended by Alan Hickey

Deseret News

Published: Wednesday, July 11 2012 12:00 a.m. MDT

Our take: What does it mean to gain an education? To some, an education is the difference between freedom and prison. In this article, Ta-Nehisi Coates shares his experiences with education and how he hopes for a better life for his son.

When I departed the system of formal education my only possession was a fat mental dossier filled with report cards running red, and progress reports appended with comments like "conduct needs work," "has trouble staying on task" and the dreaded "is not working up to potential."

I can tell you everything that was wrong with my education how cold pedagogy reduced the poetry of Macbeth to a wan hunt for hamartia, how the beautiful French language broke under rote vocabulary. But more than that, I can tell you what happens when education is decoupled from curiosity, and becomes little more than an insurance policy.

Read more about School on The New York Times.

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