Let Teenagers Try Adulthood By Leon Botstein

1182 Words 5 Pages
First, Let Teenagers Have a Fair Shot at Adolescence

Across the hypercritical and interconnected global society that exists today, a multitude of notions and opinions constantly stream from every source imaginable; however, Leon Botstein’s analysis of education in America stands out among the most profound. Bluntly writing in a piece entitled Let Teenagers Try Adulthood, Botstein proposes, “the American high school is obsolete and should be abolished” (153). This provocative nature of Botstein’s writing leads to polarized views of the education system that could ultimately result in alienation of individuals or groups with more moderate views. That is not to say Botstein lacks valid points. Though some of Leon Botstein’s arguments for reform
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He calls high school “a flawed institution that is out of date” (155). The data presented in the “Fuzzy on Math” graph seems to support his argument . The United State’s rank of twenty-eighth on the world-wide list of math performance would leave many wondering if the current methods of american teaching are antiquated (source 5). Not only that, Botstein also correctly describes the superficial and extremely shallow standards by which students are too often judged in the high school. He remarks about high school being a place where “insiders hold sway because of superficial definitions of good looks and attractiveness, popularity and sports prowess” (153). Unfortunately, this is true in my school and undoubtedly most others. These “good-looks” Botstein mentions have nothing to do with possession or application of talents, nor do they predict or reflect the potential for success in that person. Yet, so often a girl’s popularity and worth are determined by her prettiness. Likewise, a miniscule amount of high school athletes go on to compete at a collegiate or professional level, but, for a high school boy especially, his worth often hinges on his athletic ability. These standards set dangerous illusions in students minds that they could never succeed because they did not fit in with the popular crowd in high …show more content…
Education is thrown into brawls that involve frozen funding and potential tax hikes. Lawmakers wrestle with the unpopularity of legislation like No Child Left Behind and Common Core. It is this inherently divisive nature of education that yields so many scathing reviews of both what and how students are taught, as well as the environment in which they are expected to learn. Leon Botstein presents harsh--yet profoundly accurate--scrutiny of the state of the American high school. Although his proposed solutions may not be comprehensively constructive for the wide array of millennial students, Botstein’s critique articulates many of the deep-seated obstacles to a constructive learning environment within schools across the country. He truthfully communicates the plight of the unrewarding roles of both the instructor and the instructed, while painting the sad setting of an outcast student’s life in school. In doing so, Leon Botstein principally reflects on the veritable circumstance that students so often fail to find their time in high school either worthwhile or

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