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It is to my understanding, a popular opinion that education improves economy and quality of life. But, to me, while I get the intuitive notion, wouldn't it beven more better to focus on improving education which leads to jobs?


Motivation for this question.

Often, people end up working in fields totally different from what they studied. For example, many people who study theoritical physics/ mathematics, end up working in IT field which have almost little to no direct relation with their schooling.

In my country, India, I find it especially so that education in nothing but a means to the end of getting a degree so as to provide qualifications for getting jobs. One major reason for this is, there is a lack of domestic industry for many fields. For example, many mechanical engineers are jobless due to this, with comptuer sience engineers being most employable due to mass amount of MNCS providing jobs.

It seems to me, that it would be better to get specific training for jobs than for education for subjects which are studied except for purely theoritical reasons for bettering economy and saving time.

I know such a thing exists in some countries. Eg: Germany with the Fachhochschules. But, it seems to be still a less popular option than the conventional theoritical training till a job.


My question is different from this question because said question speaks about degrees which have applications in real world vs not. While, this question is more related to the fundamental idea of the degree itself.

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    If you are not very educated, education in anything makes you better at many things. also, who is going to start this manufacturing industry if not the people who are educated as mechanical engineers? May 12, 2023 at 19:43
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    A good education will also teach you how to learn on your own which is critical in any job as the need to learn new things never ends.
    – Joe W
    May 13, 2023 at 17:39
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    Fachhochschulen in Germany are not so different from universities. They provide the same degrees, and it is very well possible to study subjects there that lead to limited employment opportunities. But what you could be talking about is the German apprenticeship system or "dual education system". People in this system study for a specific profession (like gardener, or car mechanic or insurance consultant). Their education is about 1/3 in vocational schools and 2/3 practical training at a company that often (but not always) intends to hire the apprentice right after they graduated.
    – Philipp
    May 15, 2023 at 13:41

9 Answers 9

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The purpose of education, since the beginning of recorded history, is not the indoctrination of knowledge, or to provide training for a job. The goal is and always has been to replace an empty mind with an open one (why an "open mind", whatever that is, is important will be discussed later). This is why aristocrats were educated (even though their jobs were mostly real estate management, military tactics, swordmanship, and accounting), whereas peasants were not. Even skilled laborers: fishing, blacksmithing, shipbuilding, etc. were not educated.

In the (classical) Greek campuses, the subjects taught were writing, mathematics, and philosophy. Once in a while also military tactics. While the answer will be slightly different in places with a history of the class system, where only certain individuals are eligible to earn an education, it's useful to focus on countries such as the US, where the class system did not exist. As the public funded education system grew in the enlightenment period the focus was still on the arts (music, art, writing, philosophy, etc.) as you can see by looking at the focus on the oldest of schools in the US (e.g. Harvard, Princeton, etc.). What changed in the 19th century was industrialization. Labor shifted from mostly agriculture in rural areas to factories in urban areas. Once engineering became significantly important in the mid 1800's you'll see schools focused in the mathematics and sciences (MIT, Caltech, etc.) pop up. MIT in particular wanted to make sure that wealthy patrons understood that it was still a place to get a viable education (a combination of professional and liberal education, specifically) and not a vocational school.

The true and only practicable object of a polytechnic school is, as I conceive, the teaching, not of the minute details and manipulations of the arts, which can be done only in the workshop, but the inculcation of those scientific principles which form the basis and explanation of them, and along with this, a full and methodical review of all their leading processes and operations in connection with physical laws.

After all, vocational schools had already existed. If you wished to become a lawyer, you went to law school. If you wanted to become a doctor, you went to medical school. Vocational schools already fill the role of job training, and vocational classes have always been offered at traditional schools, even at the secondary level (e.g. classes in Home Economies, Business courses, typing, etc.).

I'd like to provide a nitpick, which is likely the entire premise of your question. An education in Computer Science is not, and was never intended to provide job training to write software. That's why only a couple of classes out of a curriculum of about 40 actually discuss writing in programming languages. The purpose is to provide a baseline to explain the other concepts relevant to the field. It happens to, by chance, be the case that the direction of the economy tends to favor the skills learned by the curriculum of several academic fields (such as Computer Science). So it appears that the Computer Science programs provide better job preparation, because graduates find job (and high paying jobs) quickly. But that's a coincidence just as murders tend to go up when ice cream sales increase (hint, murders happen more often during the summer because more people are outside when it is warm, and ice cream sales increase when the weather is warm).

To go back to the class system, even though there was no direct benefit for the jobs they where doing, aristocrats spent a lot of money getting educated. That's because aristocrats, most importantly had another job, governance, which is aided by the critical thinking skills (the "open mind" concept from the opening paragraph) acquired by the traditional education. To compare to the US, you may notice that most upper chamber congressmen, governors, and presidents, have hugely biased resumes in favor of the older liberal arts schools such as Harvard, Princeton, and Colombia. So it's been known for a very long time that the traditional education system is practically job training for governance type jobs. Since in the US (and in India, as the question mentions) there is a democracy, the leaders are elected out of the population (basically at random). So it's important that the random person in the population has the necessary skills to succeed in governance. That is why the prudent individuals already in the government make sure that the education system still focuses on the traditional curriculum; so that the next generation is actually prepared to take their jobs.

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    While I agree with you politically, outside of the US your historical remarks are very, very wrong. 1) The liberal arts were only the preparatory, first part of higher education and attended mainly by minors. At European universities, as invented in the middle ages, you would go on to study theology, law or medicine. 2) European aristocracy did not get a good education. Before enlightenment, they regularily would not have been able to read or write. 3) Vocational schools do not predate the industrial revolution, they were an integral part of it by making the master/apprentice system obsolete.
    – ccprog
    May 14, 2023 at 4:27
  • @ccprog I would be very wary of using broad statements like "European universities" and "European aristocrats" since prior to the modern period there was very little in common between any regions. That said, "aristocrats", in no way implies European, as they existed throughout the middle east and Asia. I don't recall saying vocational schools predated the industrial revolution. But they most definitely predated the 1870s, which the quote was from, and provided context that creating vocational schools was the hot new thing at the time and the founders of MIT were well aware.
    – uberhaxed
    May 14, 2023 at 9:17
  • You're confusing cause and effect with respect to feeder universities for elected officials. Those schools have a. huge legacy enrollment programs which enroll people from families that are already high in business or government, b. they have alumni and student organizations geared toward getting their students into positions of power after graduation, and c they intentionally accept people that have a high likelihood of looking for that kind of power after graduation, to continue the cycle. There's nothing in particular about their academic programs that makes their graduates more suited. May 18, 2023 at 14:47
  • @IllusiveBrian You do understand the point was about liberal arts, not about the Ivy league? The vast majority of presidents and senators graduated from liberal arts colleges and a large number of those happen to be a small number of elite liberal arts schools.
    – uberhaxed
    May 19, 2023 at 2:13
  • @uberhaxed That's my point, liberal arts programs don't push people into the Presidency, what they have is extracurricular opportunities and professional networking that relies on their existing network of alumni, and enrollment programs that target people likely to be the next senators and Presidents. You say "happen to be" but my point is that it's that small elite set of schools' business model, which has very little to do with their educational program. The interest politicians have in keeping this going is that it's easy to get their kids into their alma matter if they donate. May 19, 2023 at 12:25
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Better for whom?

Like this mindset of a purely job-related education is deeply troubling with regards to what it means to be human, because in effect you'd reduce a human life to being a specialized tool for an employer.

However people also have a life outside of work. For example in a democracy, a citizen is expected to be an active participant. People might miss that point when they conflate democracy with voting and elections, but the general concept is "the rule of the people", that's why you are allowed to vote and asked for your opinion in the first place. So both in your own interest and in the interest of the entire system you're required to inform yourself and make informed decisions based on what you want personally and where you want the direction of your community be heading to. And if you don't want to fall victim to people telling you what you should want, you research approaches, goals, consequences and so on, which might require education outside of the domain of your job.

Not to mention that you fulfill a whole lot of roles in life and all of them require knowledge, the ability to gather knowledge, the techniques to comprehend and categorize it and so on. Not all of them are relevant to your job and your employers but many of them are highly relevant to you.

Also jobs might not be permanent. Like people make fun of the Luddites who fought against the industrialization of the textile industry because they feared that it would make their jobs obsolete, by pointing out that while it destroyed lots of jobs it also created new ones. What these people don't see is that these jobs might not have gone to the same people. So highly specialized skill sets can be rendered obsolete quite easily leaving you with nothing but being a burden to society rather than an asset. While if you had some meta level skills as well, the specialization in another domain might happen easier.

Like the classical example is older people being trained on certain computer programs complaining about an update that made everything worse, because now the buttons that they used to press are no longer where they used to be and so on. However if you know what you're conceptually doing what is the idea behind pressing these buttons or what's the idea of the developer for reorganizing them, then you'll have way less trouble to adjust.

Yet another thing is that a lot of things are related or better we MAKE them be related. Like if you've idk played an instrument or pursuit a hobby, you'll have faced and overcome challenges, you'll have suffered setbacks and satisfaction, you'll have build a tolerance for frustration and you'll have gained some self-esteem and confidence in your abilities and your ability to learn new things. Which are skills that can be transferred to domains that are completely unrelated to what you've been doing, you just feel similar feelings and know how to react to them with confidence rather than panic, with curiosity rather than despair.

And finally there's probably also a social component to it. Like you're building a common language with other people who have gone through that same stuff and that makes communication easier or harder (if they haven't). So beyond the knowledge there's probably also a social class thing going on there where "a common background" gives something to talk about outside of work where people can connect and reduce stress.

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Frame Challenge: Which jobs should the focus on education, and what tasks will those jobs entail in...4-7 years? Or 22 years?

First, a sense of scale regarding educational goals, and the shifting of them:

  • Generally, earlier in life, people have more general education, then as they go through their schooling years, they start to specialize in specific fields, and get more specific at later educational years.

  • In Canada, pre-school is age 3-5, Kindergarten is age 5, which puts grade 1 at age 6, through to age 12-13 for grade 7, after which, we go to high school for grades 8-12 from age 13-18, then university/college admissions can start from age 18-19 and go for, as a local popular joke goes, "The best 4 to 7 years of your life.". That last bit is a bit variable, but taking it at it's max, that's 25 years - I'm ignoring that "4-7" years at the end might not include medical schooling's extra years - I'm talking baseline education for a given bachelor's degree in a given field, to start working.

In my experience, we had more electives in high school, so we theoretically could start specializing then, but it's likely still a bit broad at that time, as it's more about trying to find what you would want to specialize in. Or what you could specialize in. College and university is where specialization really kicks in, and at that point, tuition rates go up...so you generally want to choose a specific path and try to hone in on it, so your mobility to change careers gets...more complicated then (Especially since some pre-requisite courses for different degrees aren't all interchangeable at that level of specialization.).

So we need to determine what kind of jobs we need in 4-7-25 years - how hard can that be?

In your post, you mentioned:

One major reason for this is, there is a lack of domestic industry for many fields. For example, many mechanical engineers are jobless due to this, with comptuer sience engineers being most employable due to mass amount of MNCS providing jobs.

Which has to do with people predicting that they'd have careers in mechanical engineering, whereas computer science engineering was likely not going to be in particularly higher demand relatively. How would we get there?

I'm going to cheat a bit here and use 2020 as the target year that someone would prepare for a job for - admittedly, a lot of stuff went down then that changed the dynamics, but we wouldn't know this 4, 7, or 25 years from January 1, 2020.

2020 - 4 years = 2016 - what was happening then?

Taking a look at the list CBS put as a major news point near the end of the year, these seemed to be the big defining job points that might happen soon (Listing by number in the list, may be skipping some:

4.) - Depending on how this pans out, you might need to train the entire workforce up from scratch to cover fields being cut-off, rebuild entire buildings for financial institutions into other EU countries, or be a lawyer. 5.) Okay, we need doctors for that, but Zika was starting to stop being a "Global health emergency" - that's not a huge priority, right? 6.) We're going to need someone to build a lot of non-lead metal pipes, and re-install them. 9.) Okay, we need more actors. Get that drama class enrolled en masse! 10.) Suggests emergency responders, but 11 suggests maybe not so many police are necessary. 7.) and 8.) imply maybe more, or maybe just a reduction in manufacturing of arms?

Short of 6.) on that list, there's some manufacturing that's going to be necessary, actors, and maybe some more emergency responders, or a way to tackle the opioid epidemic. Not a huge demand for healthcare workers to handle a non-Zika breakout event.

But that's 4 years out too - what about 7 years out?

2020-7 years = 2013 - what was happening then?

1.), 2.), 9.), and 12.) seem to indicate we'll want a lot of Climate Change scientists working at maximum capacity to solve the climate change problem - and a lot of construction workers to repair most of the places and stuff broken. (Also, flood protection measures). 5.) seems to indicate that maybe we need more better checks at places to catch terrorist attacks - except 6.) seems to indicate that's not what the people you'd expect to be able to catch that sort of problem were doing. At the least, they were going to be critiqued, and probably significantly hampered.

As this post has gotten pretty large just indicating those two timeframes, I'll leave it as an exercise to see if you can predict what 2020 was going to need for a workforce in 2020 - 22 = 1998. I suspect it won't be very accurate. Or if it does align, it'll conflict with my next point - will those jobs be doing the same thing?

Not all the tasks 4-22 years at the job before you begin the job will stay that way

These are just time displacements above based on social events at the time - we haven't even touched technological change in the factor of automation. With technology, comes automation, which sometimes automates entire tasks that used to take up most of the job's hours...until it doesn't.

So you could find yourself training for 4-7-22 years, only to find that the job you're training for...changed. At @12:39 of the video I linked above, if you trained for 4-7 years to be a trucker, and then found yourself needing to change jobs because of truck automation technology, you're going to have a harder time changing to a different career in the timeframe that it might be necessary to change skillsets.

As a result, it'd be useful to have a secondary set of education training that probably has no relation to your current job work, so that in the off-chance the job tasks change, you have a higher chance of having the skills later required for that job, or for a career change, if necessary. Any education is preferable to not enough education.

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The International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, one of fundamental pacts on human rights and binding law for all signing parties, really says it all at the beginning of Article 13:

The States Parties to the present Covenant recognize the right of everyone to education. They agree that education shall be directed to the full development of the human personality and the sense of its dignity, and shall strengthen the respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms. They further agree that education shall enable all persons to participate effectively in a free society, promote understanding, tolerance and friendship among all nations and all racial, ethnic or religious groups, and further the activities of the United Nations for the maintenance of peace.

This is not abstract idealism. It is a hard-earned lesson of history. After the victory of the Allies over Nazi Germany in 1945, its universities were closed down for their subserviance to this murderous regime. In April 1946, the former Technische Hochschule Berlin-Charlottenburg was allowed to reopen under a new name, Technische Universität Berlin. On this occasion the British city commander, Major-General E. P. Nares had this to say:

The British authorities are well aware that the Technical High School of Berlin made a valuable contribution to your country's war potential and was one of the props of the technical development of the vast war machine which Hitler built up to oppress other people and to impose what he conceived to be the will of Germany without respect for the rights and wishes of the rest of the world... But we, the British authorities, do not believe that Germany and its technical education must necessarily be devoted to such aims...we are giving you our confidence of showing that German science and technology can be turned to the civilised and constructive aims of peace...

The implications of this change of name are simple but of vital importance. It should teach you that all education, technical, humanistic, or what you will, is universal; that is to say it must embrace the whole personality, and its first aim is to produce a whole human being, capable of taking his place responsibly besides his fellows in a community. Its second aim may be to produce a good philologist, a good architect, a good musician or a good engineer. But if education does not assist the development of the whole personality it fails its aim, and this Technical University must not fail in its aim. You cannot bring into this building only the technical part of your minds and leave the other parts of your personality outside or hang them up with your hat and coat on a peg in the hall. You must bring to your work all that you have—your love of art, your religion, your philosophy of life as well as your technical capacities—and allow them to develop together with your work through your experience here and your contact with your teachers and fellow-students.

...

This universality is necessary in education because only by cultivating the whole of himself can man acquire a sense of responsibility, and only by responsibility can freedom, peace and justice—that is the happiness of all men—be assured. Those technicians—and they were not few—who were content to put their technical brains at the disposal of Hitler's war machine without considering the ends to which it led were lacking in responsibility. If they had first thought, "What will be done with this discovery of mine? To what use will this machine I can make be put? How is it related to the whole functioning of mankind?", then those of them who were a whole men and felt responsibility for their actions would have seen that the aim was unjust and represented the perversion of their ingenuity. Science and technology can be devoted and must be devoted to advancing the peace and civilisation of man and this can only be so if they are used with responsibility. Responsibility is the corner-stone of democracy...the ideal democracy is a society of well-developed, well-educated individuals prepared to think for themselves and to take responsibility, but of their own free will to put the good of the community first when it conflicts with their own individuality. This can only be done by people with a sense of personal responsibility for their actions and a respect for the right of other people to think differently from them. The more you here devote yourselves to the development not of mere technicians but of whole responsible men the more you will advance the future peace and happiness of men and the more you will fulfil the intentions of the British and German authorities who have sponsored your opening.

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It seems to me that the question being posed is actually: why do employers prefer educated workers, even if the education is not immediately related to the job?

I'd advance the following possibilities:

  1. General skills conveyed by education;
  2. Measure of personality;
  3. Socioeconomic background;
  4. Mismatch between educational fields and occupational divisions of labour.

General skills conveyed by education

One traditional distinguishing feature of formal education, as distinct from any trade training, has been that the conceptual content of a field of study is discussed and analysed explicitly, verbally and in writing.

These activities involve cognitive skills relating to verbal and written communication, and the organisation and critical scrutiny of information and concepts.

Stereotypically, the difference between the educated worker and the trade worker, is that the educated worker can tell you how things are done (and why they are done, and why things are not done otherwise), whereas the trade worker can only show you how things are done (and perhaps, not done).

I'm not myself implying any superiority in the understanding possessed by the worker in one mode or the other, but for those concerned with management rather than personal execution, the ability to formulate then discuss plans (submit them to collective examination) and express commands (and convincing reasoning) to coordinate a workforce are also important.

For those participating in occupations where there are constant complicated variations in execution (and thus a great deal of management labour required), they might not need to make and articulate complicated plans themselves, but they need at least to be able to hear and understand those who do (and scrutinise the content enough that the managers are not allowed to run amok with corporate resources and incoherent plans).

For many employers, they need a workforce in possession of the cognitive skills described above. These skills are far more important than the detail of any particular field of study pursued in education, and whilst there are wide margins of error, those with an education will on average have better skills in these areas than those without.

Measure of personality

The pursuit of an education has traditionally correlated with an intellectual or studious personality.

Or at least, if not "personality" in the true sense, then certainly habituation and trained preference for certain kinds of activity.

Employers recruiting for desk jobs want people who are happy to be sat down most of the day, thinking, writing, talking (about work), or concentrating on some kind of detailed activity.

Often we're not necessarily talking about "intelligence" here. Modern corporations often have a need for those who do the clerical equivalent of stacking shelves and digging holes with shovels, but without the physicality.

A significant number of those who perform modestly in education, or who perform well only with the input of undue time and effort, will be sought out by employers to fill these kinds of sedentary routine jobs.

Socioeconomic background

In Western society there is still a correlation, but especially in underdeveloped societies like India, I suspect the possession of a university education has a considerable correlation with socioeconomic background.

This is relevant to employers because it implies the worker's parents will have had the resources (money, energy, free time) to raise the worker to a good standard of culture, and that the worker is more likely to have the conservative attitudes resulting from an upbringing with relative stability and with an absence of the most intensive economic exploitation of the parents.

Because capitalist relations are defined by exploitation, this is always a relevant consideration, but in sectors defined by a high degree of industrial conflict, the employer may be explicitly recruiting for those least accustomed to thinking which challenges the structure of the existing system and least prone to collective organising or a class mentality.

Mismatch between educational fields and occupational divisions of labour

Often, curriculums in education do not map directly to the needs of a particular employer filling a particular role.

This is because workers are reluctant to embark on multi-year studies that tie them very closely to only a particular economic role, and because employers, never offering jobs prior to the completion of study, have little ability to express demand for study to match their exact needs.

Even where an employer could expect to recruit someone with a generally relevant field of study, they probably find from experience that they are not so over-supplied with candidates that they can always get one on the spot - and they'd prefer to have bums on seats and work moving slowly, than not at all.

Because fields of study are defined with somewhat arbitrary boundaries, and because divisions of labour are often not such as to require only specialist knowledge and nothing else, many employers also find that they can start to suffer from monocultures if they recruit only educated workers who have studied particular fields.

This is where some kinds of specialist knowledge are over-supplied in their workplace, and other kinds of knowledge are under-supplied, or where there are few integrations of knowledge across different fields which might be extremely valuable to an employer.

Essentially, the need of educators to divide up fields of study for the purpose of teaching or study (especially over a limited timeframe), cannot be expected to align perfectly with an industrial division of labour.

Conclusion

The field of study is often of least concern to employers of educated workers.

What matters more is:

  1. The skills conveyed by the process of education generally;

  2. How education implicitly selects for certain features of ability or mentality which employers find desirable in workers; and

  3. A certain amount of intellectual diversity in the workplace which undoes the harmful (but necessary) specialisations which formal education imposes.

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The other answers are optimistic, but there are also cynical reasons to encourage general education so strongly.

First, just to get this one out of the way quickly since it's fairly obvious; education is big business. There is an astronomical amount of money poured into education, and basically nobody with any power in the system is incentivised to change that. This is true even in countries with free (to the student) education.

In The Case Against Education, Bryan Caplan argues that education beyond a certain minimum is a waste of time, and amounts essentially to peacocking. Employers care only about the diploma, because it is some measure of proof that a prospective employee is a reasonably responsible person; he must have been to put up with four years or more of lessons and work he'll probably never use again. There is an arms race aspect as well; HR workers are incentivised to look for as highly-educated workers as possible, so that if a new hire does turn out to be a mistake, they can cover their behinds. "How could I have known he was lazy? Harvard said he was great!" The longer and more expensive said Harvard diploma is to get, the stronger this effect becomes.

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Democratic society requires its citizens to have opinion and make decisions during elections and referendums. It is really bad when majority of the citizens can be convinced into various pseudo-theories and accept a kind of pseudo-history. Otherwise the "alternative facts", "alternative history" and "alternative explanations" soon emerge, making all truth relative and arbitrary.

Due that, a proper citizen must have generic knowledge about the world, economics, history and basics of science. It is not enough to prepare the citizen just for the highly focused work role.

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I hate to pull out an old, old saw, but the truth is that knowledge is power. to 'know' something is to have the proper framework to 'do' something, and the ability to 'do' something is the essence of power.

There is a long history of vocational education whose sole purpose is to train people to do specific jobs. Occupations like welding, auto mechanics, accounting, hospital support work, information technology, etc all require specialized training that these schools provide, and that's fine. But if that is all a person knows how to do, then that person is replaceable/disposable. That kind of education gives one some power over one's life, but one is still largely at the mercy of circumstance.

I mean, what is a welder to do if all the welding jobs go to another country? He hasn't been educated to do anything else, and he hasn't been educated to think broadly and solve those kinds of endemic problems. He's stuck.

People with more 'liberal' educations have the cognitive foundation needed to see bigger pictures. They can adapt more easily to changing circumstances, interact socially and politically to address changes that might harm them, express themselves more coherently when faced with dilemmas. People without broad education have no recourse when faced with broad, systemic issues except to scream and shake their fists (I'm sure we can all think of examples of that in modern political life). And while that can have an effect, it only grants power to some broadly educated person who manages to rope in the angry, screaming crowd for h'er own purposes.

The first thing any tyrannical regime does is limit and control education. Such regimes want their subjects to have vocational skills because that's good for the economy (and thus good for the regime). They do not want their subjects to have broader, more 'liberal' educations, because that confers power on their subjects, when the regime wants all power for itself. Even if one's life goal is to be (again) a welder, one needs more education than the skills and techniques of welding, or one is merely at the mercy of social and political powers one is not equipped to address.

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Because education is not particularly about the economy. Education is about instilling particular belief systems.

This idea is at least as old as Aristotle. “Give me a child until he is 7 and I will show you the man.”

This is still true whether the education takes place in a government run school, or at the knee of the child's parents, or some mixture.

Education for the purposes of a job can take place nearly anywhere. It can be as varied as there is variation in jobs. It need not be in any way standardized, beyond the needs of the task. Indeed, a company that requires a specific task can probably perform the training for that task better than a government run education facility. Where can you best learn the engineering required to build automobiles? Quite likely form people who are doing exactly that.

In order to have a culture, there must be shared knowledge. In order for the culture to be cohesive, there must be shared values. This is part of the meaning of the poem by Rudyard Kipling The Gods of the Copybook Headings. Previously, children in British schools were required to copy out "homilies" when they were learning to write cursive. These were little expressions of things that, at that time, people would find as so obviously true as to be completely undeniable. After writing them out fifty times each, the student would absorb them and they would become automatic. And so, these "copybook headings" became a sort of under current to the lives of every person who completed a British school education.

In each culture there are things of this nature. These are common shared values that form the substructure and support of a culture. If there are not, or if they fragment or fall away, so does the culture.

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