The Evolution of Education in America

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“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world” (Mandela). Unfortunately, during the 1790s in America, education was not as significant or available to the public, but eventually over time, became more recognized. As the Industrial Revolution began in America, many different aspects of the continent had started to develop, one of the main aspects being education. Back then schools offered a very different curriculum as to what is present now a days, they were more focused on subjects like religion, family, and morality. The job of being a teacher wasn’t too popular either, which is why many teachers created student monitor groups, who they assigned some of their work to. With the use of some of these students assistance, the school could provide more students with an education, as some of these students even taught other student classes. These student monitor groups “reigned supreme over their peers in American schools” and they performed other jobs too, such as guarding a hall or classroom (The History of Education in America). Student monitor groups were based off students who got higher exam grades and showed a higher level of intellectuality. This whole system was called the monitorial system, where teachers taught a certain section of students the material, and once their class was over they would head over to other classes and teach the material they learned to other students. It was popular in the northeastern part of the USA for roughly “the first 30 years of the 19th century” (The History of Education in America).

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Furthermore, it has been an ongoing issue in the world that girls had unequal rights, and it was no different in America regarding education. Before the 1850s, girls were taught how to read but not how to write, as it was not considered important to be literate, especially for girls. Even the concept of academic instruction wasn’t as popular until the 1850s, and at that point the subjects of math and reading were presented to aid literacy (The History of Education in America). “Moreover, in 1850, public school attendance was at 59 %, and by 1900, 31 states required children, between ages 8-14, to attend public schools. Demand for education grew, and by 1918 all states required children to at least complete elementary school. Subsequently, in the 1950s, public school attendance rose to 75%” (The History of Education in America).

Eventually, as time passed, the government got more involved with their country’s educational system. For instance, the ESSA, every student succeeds act, “replaced the 2001 no child left behind act,” allowing the federal government to have a say in public education, but the ultimate decision was still up to the state when establishing standards. The ESSA creates equality between students, and has high standards, preparing them for college. Hence, today public school attendance has risen to a booming 94%, as education is valued way more nowadays, being considered as the ground for success.

Education today has improved a lot since the Industrial Revolution. Thanks to many different inventions such as technology and machinery, our modern day schools have the ability to provide high quality education to their students. For instance, many schools utilize laptops, ipads, or other similar devices to aid their students in their learning. Adding on to that, the use of printers is crucial in today’s educational systems since every teacher is constantly printing worksheets, papers, and other sources to use for their classes. If it were not for these inventions, education today would not be as advanced. Moreover, compared to the lack of teachers and schools back in the early Industrial years, today there are 98,158 public schools present in the US, and there are 3.2 million full-time teachers. This is a major improvement compared to student monitor groups, where teachers had students teach their classes, as their wasn’t enough teachers to teach all students in a school. Furthermore, schools have integrated concepts into their curriculum which aren’t only subjects like math and english, but also further reaching, requiring deeper thinking subjects, such as world conflicts and the importance of service hours. Importantly, the voice of students have grown to be more significant, and are looked upon with greater significance as schools care more about what students have to say, and want to ensure the best possible environment for their students. On the other hand, public schools in America are still struggling with some aspects of their community. Some factors which are present as an issue today are segregation, poverty in some school districts, bullying, student attitudes, student health and more. Along with all these improvements and some struggles, America is attempting many different ways to tackle their controversial education system. The government is acknowledging overcrowded schools, balancing out the students between schools, and building news ones if necessary. Moreover, funding schools is becoming the government’s priority.

When facing the future and possible innovations regarding educational systems in America, there are many different ideas already lingering around in today’s society. If we are looking into the future, approximately 30 years, we could infer that America’s schooling will evolve even more. Technology will probably be at a complete new stage as well, with new devices to help aid the students. The machinery used in schools will not only be developed in its looks or abilities, but also in its speed to process the task given to it. Moreover, over the next 30 years it is quite likely for the government to build many new modern school buildings. If nowadays there is more than 500 billion dollars spent on public schooling each year, in hopes of the country prospering and becoming richer, the amount spent on schools will increase, allowing the government to update their old schools, and also build new ones. Furthermore, perhaps as ideologies are tested by new discoveries and are constantly changing, the school curriculum would adjust and change. Last but not least, over the past decades, our world has become more and more science based instead of relying on religion. In other words, in the future, America could become more science based and maybe even get rid of some religions, which would affect school who taught any religious curriculum. In all, education has come a great way in many aspects, and is likely to further develop.

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