Is School a Scam? 10 Reasons Why You Think School is a Scam Vs Why It Isn’t

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There is a lifelong debate on whether ‘school is a scam or not’. While some schools of thought believe the education system is a scam, most people still strongly believe that schooling is vital to learning and success. However, many young students feel as though the system force them to take subjects they’re uninterested in. Subjects that have no part to play in their future in the long run.

Everyone has different passions, goals, and career paths, and sometimes these passions are not fanned to flame in the regular school setting. People are beginning to focus more on learning more complex life skills that are not believed to be taught in the traditional classroom setting.

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Over the years, it is believed that the only way to educate children is through the regular classroom schooling system. This involves taking your children to a school where a teacher speaks in front of a group of students covering subjects like Math, English, and science. It also includes attending school five times a week and graduating from one level of education to another.

Also read 13 Top Career Skills You Don’t Learn in School – But it’s a Must Today

The normal routine is for a child to pass through Kindergarten, Nursery, Primary, Secondary, and College or University. So many have passed through this system of education and routine yet feel unfulfilled in life. This has made many people believe that school is a scam.

But is school a scam? Do you need to go to school to be educated? In this post, I’ll try to address these issues. Continue reading to the end.

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Common Arguments as to Why School Is a Scam

Many people believe that school is a scam and that it doesn’t teach students the necessary life skills to be relevant in society. They argue that school teaches students things they aren’t passionate about and does not prepare them for future career paths.

Those who believe that school is a scam argue that there is a big difference between school and education. They say school is merely a formal setting or process that doesn’t deliver everything education represents. They argue that schools only expose students to certain ideas and views and fail to experientially provide the entire picture of all perspectives out there.

People against the conventional school system believe parents should teach their children themselves at home. Schools should restructure the things taught and limit it to relevant life-applicable skills.

Children spend a large chunk of their life schooling, which in most cases is a complete waste of their precious life and time.

Here are some reasons why we believe school is a scam

  • You are exposed only to select ideas

In a schooling system, there is already a set curriculum and syllabus which students must be taught. The curriculum, in most cases, is not based on the student’s interests and passion. Little to no room for creative thinking. The teachers teach only selected topics while ignoring relevant topics and subject areas essential to the student’s development.

The schooling system is designed for reading and writing, not doing. Students are taught theory without practice. Schools train you in fields for which there will be no jobs by the time you graduate. For instance, they still teach typewriting in schools. I wonder where that will be relevant in this 21st century. Some may have been heartbroken, dedicated their whole life studying some particular courses only to graduate and discover they are irrelevant in society. This is the main reason why they believe school is a scam.

Also read 10 Skills that will serve you for a lifetime

  • A paper constitutes a certificate of knowledge instead of practical realization

In the schooling system, passing your examination is seen as the test of knowledge. People who have excellent grades are considered the smartest students, while those with low grades are considered to be dull students. This is the biggest scam of education. An examination is not the true test of knowledge, and a certificate is not either.

More emphasis is placed on a certificate rather than their intrinsic intelligence. The truth is that every child is intelligent. But the schooling system is not designed to help identify each child’s uniqueness. We have many first-class students working for third-class students and college dropouts.

Creativity is killed in school as you’re only considered an excellent student when you can replicate what your teacher taught. You’re only as smart as your teacher or lecturer. If you prove to be smarter, it will be misinterpreted as folly, and you will be failed.

You must pass all your subjects to be considered successful, even if you’re a genius in one or two subjects.

This, to me, is the biggest problem of the schooling system. You can fail all your subjects in school and yet be successful in other life ventures. The schooling system has no room for passion; the focus is only on the subjects taught in the school. For example, so many kids who love and excel in sports, music, arts, and technology, instead of being made to specialize in it at an early age, are forced to read history and other subjects they hate.

Little wonder you see many people dropping the course they studied to pursue their passion later on. This further proves that the schooling system is not designed to accept passion.

Also read Top 7 Skills Google Now Look for in Graduates – and what it means for you

  • They don’t teach financial intelligence in school

Among the many subjects taught in school, financial intelligence is exempted. This is also another major reason why people regard school as a scam. Can you imagine spending over 20 years of your life schooling, yet knowing nothing about how to make, manage, and grow money?

People go to school to get high-paying jobs after they graduate. Yet nothing is taught about money. If schooling is a big deal, then teachers, lecturers, and professors alike should be the richest people. But that is not often the case; the richest people are not “school fanatics.”

In school, you’re taught many things you’ll never need or use in life. You’re fooled to believe that you’ll be rich in the future if you pass through school. You’re also taught that if you fail in school, you’ll never succeed in life. If there is one place where students should learn about money, it should be in school. But the reverse is the case. Many successful businessmen and women did not pass through the conventional school setting. This is why many young graduates look at their lives and feel they wasted time passing through the school system.

Also read 7 Reasons Why Most Educated People end up Poor

  • You’re not taught how to discover your purpose and passion

Purpose is knowing the reason why you were born. And if there is any place people should discover their purpose, it should be in school. The school is supposed to be an avenue where people pass through to discover themselves and what they are passionate about. However, this is not what we see in the school setting. 

The majority of the people who passed through school did not choose to. Some did not even know why they were in school. Students are forced to take courses they’re not passionate about. This is why the school system produces millions of graduates annually who are clueless about their unique contribution to society. They end up becoming a liability rather than problem solvers. Your life is beyond Math, English, Science, Chemistry, Physics, Biology, Engineering, Medicine, or any other course studied in school. There is something unique God put in you when He created you that you are to do on earth. That is what purpose discovery is all about. Purpose is one of the many things school is supposed to help students discover.

Also read Why Most African Graduates Earn Less than $150, 5 years After School

  • It teaches you things that don’t relate to your future job

I want to be an SEO expert in the nearest future. I have been in school for over 15 years and never learned anything related to the job I want to be involved in. I once asked my elder brother if a job as a writer is good. He said I should study medicine or pharmacy or choose a course that relates to what I am being taught in school. In my opinion, it is a total waste of time to learn stuff that you’ll not need in the future. Unfortunately, this is what we get in the regular school setting.

I know of a medical doctor who dropped his medical profession to pursue his passion for web design. He surely did not learn about web design in medical school. The school system is too rigid, and if you’re not careful, you’ll discover that you wasted a large chunk of your life schooling.

Also read 15 Things You Need to Know About the Future of Work

  • There is no universal standard for measuring intelligence

This is the problem with the school system. The only universal standard for measuring intelligence is through a certificate. The best student in one country/school/district can be the worst student in another without even knowing based on some other parameters.

Even if you’re the smartest person on earth, you’re not allowed to take up certain jobs without passing through school and earning a certificate.

  • The quality of education doesn’t seem to improve over time

The schooling system is too rigid, that some of the principles, theories, concepts, and ideas being taught today were postulated centuries ago. Most of those theories have become obsolete and irrelevant to the present times. Yet students are made to study concepts, principles, and theories irrelevant to the 21st century. Isn’t that a total waste of time? Schools are always supposed to review their curriculum to prepare students for the times they live in.

  • School teaches you no useful skills

School is supposed to be where you learn useful skills that will make you relevant in society and different spheres of human endeavor. But the reverse is always the case. We see many students graduate with little or no useful skills to show for it. Most graduates are unemployable today, not because there are no jobs but because they lack the relevant skills employers seek.

We live now where your certificate means little or nothing to employers. What they are after is skills. But, unfortunately, schools do not teach these useful skills. Most people only get to discover that they wasted their time in school after they graduate. The time and energy they spent in school would have been channeled into learning skills that will make them problem solvers.

Also read 10 Negative Habits Every Student Should Break Before You Leave School

  • School doesn’t cultivate self-knowledge

In the schooling system, your entire focus is on what you are taught. You’re meant to believe that life is all about what you’re taught in school. Therefore you focus all your energy on learning your subjects. Only to discover that you’re deficient in other areas of life upon your graduation. Students are not taught the rudiments of personal development and self-learning.

  • Many self-made individuals are more successful than certificate holders

In the world today, most of the people controlling the world economy did not pass through the conventional schooling system or dropped out. The likes of Mark Zuckerberg, Elon Musk, Aliko Dangote. Certificate holders have no more hands-on knowledge than their other colleagues who have no certificate. In most cases, roadside mechanics perform better than Professors in Mechanical engineering.

Also read How to Be Successful Without a University degree

Common Arguments Why School Is Not a Scam

Those in support of the conventional schooling system believe that it’s a place where you get to learn the foundational, basic, and necessary skills for life. They also believe that education provides better choices and opportunities in the long run for people who know what they want to do in their careers.

Those who dropped out of school or did not go to school are closing doors of opportunities for themselves in the future.

No matter what you say or do, regardless of your level of expertise and skills, there are certain opportunities you can never access without a higher education certificate.

Whether you admit it or not, schools play a vital role in our lives and society. So if you think school is a scam, think again, because you might be wrong. When you’re well-schooled, your quality of life and your decision-making skills will be better.

Here are some of the reasons why school is not a scam.

  • Creates employment opportunities

Securing a well-paying job is difficult, especially during economic downturns. You’ll have to compete for the same position with other qualified candidates. More so, the lower the education level for a particular job opening, the higher the number of applicants competing for the job. However, you stand a better chance of being considered for the job with a higher educational qualification.

So, in the long run, school is not a scam like you thought because it creates employment opportunities. There are jobs you cannot dream of applying for without a college certificate.

Also read 5 Important Ways Jobs will Change in the 4th Industrial Revolution

  • Earn a higher income

The higher your educational qualification in civil service or the corporate world, the higher your rank and pay. More so, highly educated people with years of experience stand a better chance of landing a high-paying job than uneducated people. Therefore if you study smart to gain knowledge and attain a high level of competence, your chances of securing a high-paying job also increase. As you’re probably aware, most employers pay you based on your level of qualification and skills. Therefore, the higher your experience and qualification, the higher the salary you’re likely to earn.

  • School helps you Develop critical problem-solving skills

One of the best benefits of schooling is that it helps you to develop critical, logical problem-solving skills. The education system will also teach you how to make independent decisions.

As you grow older, you’ll encounter lots of challenging situations. For instance, you’ll start staying alone, raising a family, providing for them, and paying bills, among others. And if you’ve spent time educating yourself, you’ll be in a better position to make sound decisions than someone who never attended school.

  • School help preserve knowledge across generations

You may argue that anyone could simply go to the library and read books rather than go to school. But if schools weren’t there to enforce and inculcate knowledge transfer, much of the knowledge from history and great minds of the past would have been lost.

  • School help train highly specialized professionals

You need schools to train people in highly specialized professions like medicine and surgery, law, engineering, etc. I mean, you can’t just read your way into these fields. You must be taught in the right environment, by the right professors, and with other learners. This is an undeniable reason that school is a critical institution for our society to thrive.

Importance of School in the Society

Education and schooling play a key role in societal growth and progress. If the citizens of a society are well educated, they will contribute immensely to the development of the society in their various areas of specialization, such as science, technology, literature, arts, among others.

Schooling and learning are important for modern society. Regardless of your position in life, you’ll need to learn about history, tradition, culture, and other aspects to contribute your quota to the development of society.

When you go to school, you’ll acquire the requisite knowledge that will help you differentiate between right and wrong.

Importance of School in Socialization

School and socialization

In clear terms, socialization is a process by which we acquire the values, norms, and attitudes of a particular culture. It also helps us learn behavioral patterns considered normal or appropriate at individual and societal levels.

There are two main levels of socialization: primary and secondary socialization. Primary socialization mainly takes place at the family level. This is where children develop cognitive skills, and learn their language, and individual identity. In the family, children are also socialized and taught certain cultural valuations and social roles.

Secondary socialization, on the other hand, takes place when children attend social institutions like schools and churches. This, therefore, means that school plays a key role in the socialization of a child. When children attend school, they will have teachers, administrators, and classmates to enhance their social interaction skills.

In school, children are taught to obey authority, which will, in turn, help them to grow into law-abiding citizens. A child also acquires and develops skills that will help them function socially, intellectually, and emotionally within the confines of the school.

Importance of School in Child Development

School and child development

The children today are the leaders of tomorrow. Therefore, they will need the right skills to position them as agents of change in the years to come. And this is where school comes in.

According to the Global Partnership for Education, the school is designed to provide a balanced education that promotes a child’s mental and psychological growth. Apart from academics and schoolwork, children learn a wide range of life skills like teamwork, unity, leadership, good manners, and responsibility.

In school, children are exposed to knowledge in various areas like English, Literature, Math, and history. And this helps them develop their mental capacity. For example, in mathematics, they are taught simply addition, multiplication, division, and subtraction. So whenever they encounter a numerical challenge in their day-to-day lives, they will use the mathematical skill acquired in school to solve that problem.

Finally, Is school a scam?

If you’re trying to determine whether school is a scam or not, I leave you to conclude yourself from the points shared in this article. The issue of why school is a scam vs. why it’s not has been an age-long debate based on individual beliefs. There is yet to be a conclusion as to whether it is truly a scam. Whatever the case, the power of schooling cannot be overemphasized. Schools will be a better place for imparting knowledge if they revise their curriculum and syllabus to include the teaching of 21st-century skills. The school system should have more goal-oriented courses to help students discover their purpose and contribute to their future.