When all kids have grit, what then?
When every school is outstanding, what then?
When every target is reached or surpassed, what then?
When everyone’s mindset is switched to growth, what then?
When all is meritocratic and we all get to where we ought to be, what then?
When every twenty-first century skill has been adopted and learnt, what then?
When every child attends the college of their dreams, when every child is fluent in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics, what then?
When all children are creative, empathetic, can move from job to job with ease, what then?
When every school leaver is able to commune happily with artificially intelligent machines due to the new jobs that have yet to be thought of that they can now be employed in the exciting never thought of industries of the future… What then?
When the tense is future-perfect, what then?
Gentlemen, there are questions that worry me; solve them for me. You for example want human beings to give up their old habits and adjust their will so that it accords with the requirements of science and common sense. But how do you know that human beings not only can but must be transformed in this way?*
Isn’t the way of things that mankind is drawn to destroying the very things that might, in all sense, be to our advantage? Even in the life of one person don’t we sometimes do the very things we know do us no good whatsoever? Eat that extra bit of cake, drink a couple of glasses too many, wake up in the wrong bed on the wrong side of town…?
How many people will it take to make the system perfect? Won’t we get bored in this utopia, that we stick pins in our eyes, or the eyes of others?
If a system is doomed to fail is it just a vain hope? Has our vision of the future written out the awkward, rebellious, self destructive anti-heroes or zeroes that so many find themselves to be? Oh we are such disappointments us human-beings. We are our own nemesis. Give me a target and I might deliberately miss it and even I won’t know why.
In the meritocracy will schools be there for the inhabitants of the de-meritocracy?
*Dostoevsky: Notes From Underground (which is the inspiration for this piece)