“Education is an admirable thing, but it is well to remember from time to time that nothing that is worth learning can be taught.” (Oscar Wilde).
This is the core of Greek learning or paideia. The goal of education is not mastery of subject matter, but of one’s person.
We have lost the purpose of education in favour of trying to make people subject matter experts with no understanding of how to use the knowledge they have gained. Whatever they have gained is quickly out of date anyway!
The present education system fails because it continues to focus on practices that served well in the industrial model but are now obsolete.
Traditional education focuses on teaching not learning with a misguided assumption that whatever a teacher teaches, a student will learn.
Subjects are taught in isolation where teachers focus on the outcomes they have to “teach” their students. There is little regard for the rest of the curriculum and the nature of true learning or the skills needed in life now known as Transversal Competencies.
The focus is on how to pass the exam which can be gamified by intelligent teachers and students.
Coupled with this is the misnomer that “the really important learning” can only happen in a classroom with a teacher. What about all of the learning that happens before and after school outside of the school setting without a teacher being present?
Do we not learn from the day we are born until the day we die? Far too much importance and the emphasis is placed on the value of formal learning (taught by a teacher), and not enough on informal and experiential learning (where the teacher is life).
There are many different ways of learning; teaching is only one of them. We learn a great deal on our own, in independent study or play. We learn a great deal interacting with others informally — sharing what we are learning with others and vice versa.