As universities and employers have become more interested in portfolios
and experiences than traditional educational backgrounds and
transcripts, it isn’t surprising to see that there has been a 62% increase in
homeschooling over the last decade, according to Alternatives to
Education writer Jens Peter de Pedro.
Many parents have already made the decision that homeschooling will
leave their children with more life experiences and a richer foundation to
build on in the future. This same mindset has led to the emergence of
other alternatives like democratic schools and the use of community
resource centers to support student-directed learning.
Ted Dintersmith, a venture capitalist-turned documentarian and writer,
has cashed in his fortune to pursue a true understanding of “the purpose
of school.” His pursuit, chronicled by The Washington Post, has called
many long-held views about education into question and has led him to
believe that “in the end, the purpose of school is to help our kids find
their own sense of purpose. To prepare them for a life where they can
set, and achieve, their own goals, not grind away to meet the needs of
some bureaucrat or college admissions officer.”
Indeed, bureaucrats and college admissions officers are no longer the
gatekeepers of higher learning. Now the world is adjusting to create new
and more tailored options to ensure that students and graduates can find
their sense of purpose and achieve their goals whether they involve a
college diploma or not.
As a result, it is incumbent upon schools to reconsider their roles in
preparing students for the future. As a starting point, schools should be
How they can shape programs of study that support employers’
desire for graduates with portable competencies and potential?