I’m not currently teaching but I hold a degree in education. I did teach for a few years about a decade ago. I taught for a private school in the Southern part of the United States.
I also have a daughter who will be starting K5 next autumn, and the current plan is that I will be homeschooling her in addition to my current job. This is not just because of the Corona virus. It is largely due to what I see as deficits within the public school system. As I also live in a more rural area now, I would need to drive her an hour one way to attend a private school that I think would provide an adequate education. Adequate. Yes, I’m picky, but she is my only child and I want the best for her. I may not be “the best” teacher, but I guarantee no one is more invested in seeing her succeed and thrive in an educational environment than I am.
That being said, it is no secret, if you’ve read some of my answers here, that I am very pro-China. If I were to consider putting my daughter in a public school atmosphere, I would have more confidence in a good Chinese school as opposed to an American school.
Why? Because China places much more emphasis on educational excellence than we do here. I’m sorry, but it’s true. Just look at who has been in charge of public schools for the past four years. Consider the fact that teachers are paid so little that in some states they have gone on strike for adequate pay. Consider that Bush’s “No Child Left Behind” initiative saw thousands of illiterate high school graduates.
Consider that Michelle Obama’s school lunch initiative has wrecked havoc on what students across the nation are being fed. And yes, what they eat is important. Some of these children eat breakfast and lunch through their school district and when the quality of food is what we’ve seen coming out of some schools, how is that expected to fuel their brains all day? Children need a variety of healthy food for their growing bodies and brains. And notice I don’t take shots at just the Republicans or just the Democrats. It is a bipartisan and nationwide problem that our school age children are being cheated.
They don’t have adequately paid teachers, they don’t have adequate food, their budgets aren’t enough when teachers are having to personally buy school supplies for several of their students. The discipline in public school stinks. Teachers spend half of their time on classroom control and discipline.
China invests more in the education of their students. I’m not sure what their local teachers make but I do know they pay their foreign language teachers very well, because I intend to eventually teach English in China when the world pandemic eases.
I don’t have first hand knowledge of other countries and what their education systems are like, but I’ve been impressed with what I’ve seen from China’s education system. Their students perform exceptionally well on international test standards. Many of their high school graduates get into excellent colleges in China, the US, and other Western nations.
They seem to have instilled an excellent work ethic into the children there. I will say, I’m a bit concerned with how hard high school students are pushed, but they do seem to turn out better after graduation.
One of the best ways to learn is repetition. Rote memory work isn’t always fun but it is effective and it seems this is used more there than in the US. I personally would like to see emphasis on critical thinking skills and practical problem solving skills as well, but many US schools need work there also.
The fact is, we’re behind in education and if that doesn’t change we’re not going to be very competitive in the international community in the next few decades.
Does China have the best education system in the world? I don’t know for sure but their test scores suggest they’re among the cream of the crop internationally, and I’d trust their education in a hot second before I would here in the states.