Educational standards are for the benefit of all
The April 10 letter, “Educating children is not a business,” may reflect what some interested parties in the education system may want, but the writer’s views do not reflect what society as a whole expects from the education system.
Society expects physicians to know math and science. They are tested rigorously and regularly. Society expects attorneys to be proficient in reading, writing and law. Law schools and states test prospective lawyers rigorously and regularly.
Society expects the educational system to prepare engineers who can build bridges, buildings, automobiles and airplanes. We expect these things to serve our needs and meet our expectations for safety and reliability. Engineers are tested rigorously and regularly.
Accountants, nurses, bankers, pilots, pharmacists, mechanics, air conditioning repair professionals, welders, drivers, etc. Imagine unqualified professionals delivering services to you.
Are teachers and students exempt from standards? Students opting out of testing should know they are on a path not to be physicians, lawyers, engineers, accountants, pilots or candidates for many other careers in which society, as the main stakeholder, demands real standards in the best interest of everyone.
Society at large is the major stakeholder in educational institutions. Standards are for the benefit of all. Society should not stand idly by as standards – and testing – are marginalized by many teachers, the very professionals society entrusts to teach skills to the next generation.