Our Future Path!    A plan for a better world!

Education (an Economic Issue)


To survive in our world, we need to learn many different things. Unlike many other animals, we humans do not have as many built-in instincts to help us survive. We start out more vulnerable and dependent on our parents and others, but we do have a much greater capacity for learning and adapting to our environment than other animals. This greater capacity to learn gives us an advantage over most other creatures.

With our technological society growing increasingly more complex, getting a good education is growing more and more important. With the greater amounts of knowledge that our civilization has accumulated, we now have the opportunity for greater prosperity than our ancestors had, but it also means we have more to learn to achieve that prosperity. Not only do we need to continue to learn more to prosper, but we also need to keep learning even greater amounts of information just to survive.

Over a lifetime, an average person today needs to learn more than one of our average ancestors did. Not only do we need to learn more, but we now need to keep learning throughout our lives. In the past, our civilization and its technology were changing much more slowly than they are today. In the past, older individuals could more easily get by with what they had learned when they were young. Today, things are changing much faster, so we need to keep learning throughout our lives to keep up with all those changes.


Education is one of the best ways to gain knowledge (facts, information and skills). Attending school is one of the best ways to get an education. However, there are many questions about what that education should look like. Why do we need to go to school? When should we start school? Where should we go to school? What knowledge do we need to learn in school? Who should teach the classes? Who should pay for our education? How should we be graded?

We need to go to school to learn the knowledge we need to survive and to prosper in the world. We need to start learning as soon as possible, since we have a lot to learn, and the more we learn the further we will be able to go in life.

We will start learning the moment we are born, and our parents will be our first teachers. However, as soon as we are ready, we need to move on to a more formal education. Although some parents might home school their children, most of us will go to kindergarten and to grade school. Most of us will then go on to college, to business school, to trade school, or to some other school of learning.

We all need to learn some basic skills like reading, writing and arithmetic but also things like history, science, art and music. In addition, we need to learn some life skills like cooking, personal finance, basic home repair and civics. However, none of that knowledge matters much unless we know how to think clearly and logically. That is, we need to know how to use common sense and logic to make good decisions.

Beyond knowing the basic and life skills and how to think, we also need to know some marketable skills. That is, we need to have the knowledge that we can use to get and to keep a job, or to start our own business. By having skills needed by our community, we will be able to do productive work that can help both ourselves and our community prosper.

We want to get the best teachers possible. To do that, we need to have the best teachers teach our teachers, and we need to pay our teachers well with both good salaries and with our respect and thanks. For our teachers to do their best and for us to learn, we need the best school environment and teaching tools. Through grade school, society should pay for our education. It is in our best interest to ensure that we all have the needed education so we can all best contribute to our community and to society at large.

Our teachers should then grade us on how well we learn the material and the skills that we will need in life. No grading on a curve. It should not matter how well other students do. It matters how well we do. If all the students do well, then they should all get passing grades. If all the students do poorly, then they should all get failing grades.


One of the most important things to learn in school is respect. We all need to learn to have respect for others, and to embrace our differences instead of attacking those who are different. This can help to cut down on the bigotry and discrimination that is still far too prevalent in our society.

We will all need to deal with a lot of different people in school, at work and in our personal lives. The sooner we learn to be respectful of others, the better we will all be in our lives and the better off our society will be.

One way to help teach respect is to teach about my 3 rules. These are "do no undue harm", "protect everything from undue harm", and "allow all living things to live their lives their way".

Common Sense and Logic

It is also important to learn some common sense and logic. Although we might think that we all should have common sense, there is plenty of evidence that many of us do not. The same can be said of logic. Nowadays, there is so much misinformation and lies being spread, we need all the help we can get to help see through them. One of the best ways to do that is to learn to use common sense and logic to evaluate what we hear and read.

In school, knowing how to use our common sense and logic will help us evaluate what we are learning. That is, instead of just learning things by rote we will be able to analyze the information that we are being taught. This will give us better understanding and protect us from being indoctrinated with some unwanted ideology. Therefore, the sooner we learn how to use our common sense and logic the better. Beyond school, this will be even more important, since we will need to protect ourselves from all the misinformation and lies that are being circulated.


The key to getting and to keeping an effective government that works well for us all is to have a well-informed electorate. A well-informed electorate is one that understands the issues but also understands how our government works. To learn how our government works, we need to take classes in civics. Civics is the study of the rights and duties of citizens and of how government works.

One big problem that we have today is that many politicians do not seem to want a well-informed electorate. These politicians know that an ill-informed electorate is easier to manipulate. Therefore, they not only try to spread misinformation and lies, but they try to block students from learning about certain subjects and reading certain books.

The problem with trying to keep us ill-informed is that they are not the only ones trying to manipulate us. Other politicians will also try to manipulate us, con artists and scammers will try to manipulate us, and foreign governments will try to manipulate us. All this manipulation can cause us to make bad decisions that will not only make our own lives worse but will weaken our government and our nation.

The only way to keep ourselves and our nation strong is for all of us to be well-informed, which will help us to elect the best individuals to represent us in our government. Therefore, having each of us get a well-rounded education that includes civics classes is essential.

Starting School

With an ever-increasing amount to learn over our lifetimes, it is essential for us to get started learning as soon as possible. Instead of waiting to start school at some set age, it would be better to allow children to start learning in school as soon as they are ready. In many instances this may be at a younger age than many children start today.

One big hindrance to letting a child start school as soon as he or she is ready is the fact that most schools only start classes once a year. For instance, if a child shows that he or she is ready sometime just after the school year has already started, then that child would currently have to wait until the start of the next school year. Therefore, we need to change our school schedules so that children can start at different times during the year.


Even though it would be nice if a child could start school at any time during the year, or at least once every month, a more realistic approach may be to start classes once every quarter. To do that, the school calendar would need to be stretched out so that it is year-round. Instead of one long summer break, there would be shorter breaks after each quarter. Even with a few holidays thrown in each quarter, a 180-day (36 week) school year could still allow a 2-week to 4-week vacation break between each quarter, depending on how many holidays are in the quarter.

Along with the benefit of being able to start school at almost any time during the school year, there are many other benefits that would or could come with breaking up the school year into quarters. For instance, with a year-round school year, students would retain more of what they had learned over the shorter quarterly breaks as opposed to one longer summer break, so less time would be lost getting back up to speed when students returned to class. In addition, individuals and families who prefer to take a vacation in the fall, winter or spring instead of the summer would now have that opportunity.

In addition, classes could be broken up into different lengths depending on how much there was to learn in each unit of material. Some classes might only last one quarter, other classes might need to be taught over two or three quarters, while other classes might need four or more quarters to be properly taught and learned.

As children get older or become more mature, they can gain greater control over their class schedules and could make more adjustments to them based on their individual needs and goals. Each quarter, students might take different course loads depending on what classes they were taking, how fast they wanted to progress or what extracurricular activities, like sports, work or travel, they were involved in.

If for some reason, a student needed to miss a lot of school and could not catch up. Quarters would make it much easier for the student to start back up in the next quarter rather than needing to wait for the start of the next school year. Losing a quarter is far less disruptive than losing an entire year. With some flexibility in class loads, it would also be much easier for a student to catch up to where he or she would have been if they had not missed some school time.


With quarters and more flexible class scheduling, students could advance in different subjects at different speeds depending on their individual abilities. Many classes could still be associated with a given “grade” level, but students could take them when they were ready and not when they reached a certain grade level. Some students may want to progress faster in some subjects that they really enjoy or are better at than in other subjects. By advancing faster in a subject, a student might then be able to take some additional optional classes in that subject later.

With our current system of grade levels, there can be a problem when a student fails in one or more classes while doing well in others. If the student takes summer classes, the student may be able to make up the work and still advance to the next grade. Of course, some students are advanced to the next grade even when they are not ready. If students are held back, they may be able to pass the classes they previously failed, but they may be forced to retake classes that they had already done well in, which may stifle some of their enthusiasm for those subjects.

Retaking a failed class is much easier with quarters and flexible class scheduling. If a student fails in one class or more classes, they must retake those classes, but they could still advance in other subjects. Therefore, students can advance at a pace that best suits their abilities in each subject.

With students advancing at different rates in different subjects, they could end up taking classes at many different levels. For instance, one student many be taking higher level Math classes, while struggling in a lower-level English class. Another student may be behind in Math but be way ahead in English. There could also be big differences in what levels students are at in their classes for History, Science and other subjects.


With students not being tied to taking specific classes when they are at specific grade levels, they would not be advancing from grade to grade in the same way that they would now. Therefore, we would need a new method of judging progress. For instance, if we assumed that a given number of hours or units of specific classes are needed to be successfully passed in order to graduate, then we could use a percentage of what is completed as our measure of a student’s progress towards final graduation.

Instead of having grades 1 through 12. We might break things down based on each 10 percent completed and have a few graduation ceremonies thrown in at specific percentages of completion. Obviously, we would have a final graduation ceremony when a student had completed 100% of the required classes, but other intermediate graduations could be held at a few other specific milestones. For instance, having one at 50 percent might be a really good idea, and maybe having one at something like 25 percent and one at 75 percent. An alternative might be to have them after a third and after two thirds of the work being done.

We must also consider some other consequences of students progressing at different rates. The first thing is that many classes may have students that are younger or older than most. Although some children will start school at a younger age than others, there may not be much of a difference in ages in the classes with the younger children. This will change as the children get older and some progress faster than others. Of course, this can be a good thing, since it will allow students to get used to being around and working with individuals of different ages.

We would also have some students being able to graduate at much younger ages with a flexible schedule of quarters than they would have with our current system of yearly grade levels. By graduating early, these students would have the option to move more quickly onto getting a higher education in college or trade school.

On the other hand, some students may take longer to graduate. For some older students this may be a problem, since they may be eager to get out of school and will want to drop out. With flexible schedules this may be less of a problem. Since students would only fall behind a quarter in some subjects instead of a year in all subjects, it would be easier to catch back up later. In addition, older students would be able to continue taking a few needed classes even if they started working more.


With the growing need for lifelong learning, it also makes a lot of sense to get used to a life of both working and learning as soon as possible. For instance, there are many jobs that students could do at their school. They could do custodial work or could work in the cafeteria or office. For classes that they have already taken, they could help tutor those classes’ new students or they could assist those classes’ teachers with setting up the class or helping to grade papers.

By working, a student gets an opportunity to learn many things that they would not get from academics alone. First, they would be able to learn about work ethics. They can also get an appreciation for the worth of a good education. Although these early jobs may not pay that much, they could be used to help teach the students a little about money management with what money they do earn. They would also get some needed work experience for when they do go out to get a job on their own.

If a student was required to do a certain minimum amount of work as part of their education, then the school could get by with paying little or nothing for some of this work. This would help the school to keep down their costs. With the savings, the school could devote more of their budget towards important academic and extracurricular activities.

In later years, students could get other jobs out in the real world where they could earn more and get a wider range of work experience. Some of their extra earnings could be saved for college or trade school. Some of this work experience could also help a student decide on a future carrier or profession.

Independent Study

In addition to regular classes, a school could also have a few independent study courses that students could take. With independent study, we can add some additional flexibility to a student’s class schedule. Some students might be able to complete a given independent study course in a few weeks, while others may need several months or more. When ready, the student would simply have to hand in any appropriate assignments and take any appropriate final exam.

These independent study classes might include reading some material in books or online, watching some video lectures, or working through an online training course. They might also involve some travel where the student visits historical sites, research facilities or foreign countries.

Another type of independent study class might more closely resemble a project that someone might be assigned when on a job. In this case, a student would be given an assignment where they would need to learn the material, do the appropriate research or experiment, and then turn in some type of report or make a presentation by a certain predefined date in addition to taking an appropriate final exam.

Video Access

There are many different reasons why a student may need to miss some classes. For instance, they may be sick, or they must go out of town for a funeral. Whatever the reason, they could miss out on some valuable information or insights that they might have only gotten by being in class. For instance, the teacher may explain something in some way that makes something clearer, or the student is able to ask an important question.

The answer is to allow a student to remotely access the class through video. This student could attend the class via a live telecast or could watch a recording of the class later. During or right after the class, a student could IM (Instant Message) their teacher with questions. Even students who attended the class would be able to go back and watch a portion of a class lecture or demonstration to get a better understanding of something.

In our new era of pandemics, being able to access a class remotely takes on even more importance. Unvaccinated and unmasked students and teachers can pose a risk to themselves and to others. Schools need to protect their students, so they need to require students and teachers to be vaccinated and, when needed, masked. Those students who are not compliant should not be allowed to attend school in person. Instead, they should be required to attend remotely via video. Some sort of video teaching might also be possible for some teachers who are not compliant.

In addition to students, these videos may be of benefit to a few others as well. To give everyone access to all the information needed, there should be at least two cameras in each classroom. One camera would show the front of the classroom with the teacher and the blackboard or whiteboard. The other camera would keep an eye on all the students in the classroom. Access to these videos would be limited to authorized users and a log should be kept of who accessed what.

School administrators could use the videos to watch samples of the teacher’s classes to help evaluate their performance. With a sampling from many classes on different days, an administrator could get a better idea of a teacher’s performance than they would from sitting in on a single class, which may not be representative of the teacher’s performance. The administrator could also use the videos to check on any complaints against a student or teacher. Cameras in the hallways would also help in case of a problem there.

Teachers could use the videos to evaluate their own performance. They could also use them to check for cheating on exams or to show parents how their children behave in class. Parents may also find it useful to look in on their children at certain times.

Physical Fitness

It is important to stay physically fit at any age. Therefore, it is important to learn how to get and to stay physically fit at an early age. This means that we need to include some appropriate physical fitness training as part of each student’s schedule.

Some fitness classes should be included in what is required for graduation, but a physical fitness class or sports participation should, in most cases, be required for each quarter that a student is in school. Part of the lesson that we want to teach is that physical fitness is something that must be continuously worked on for us to remain healthy.


Without students being in specific grades, we also need to change the way we determine what sports a student is eligible to participate in. Given that some students are held back, and some children develop at different rates, there has always been a problem with them being mismatched in size and physical development. For instance, high school sports usually include students from about 14 to 18, where the older teenagers are often much bigger than the younger ones.

The answer is to switch to a system of using both age and physical development as the determining factors in what sports league a student could participate in. By looking at the normal growth rates for children, the age ranges for each sport’s league could be determined by trying to set each age range so that the children should all be close in physical development. In each sport, each league would start with the appropriate age range, but factor in a child’s actual physical development, which could keep them in a younger league or push them up to an older league.

For instance, if a child has developed somewhat normally for his or her age, then their participation in a sports league could be determined by the child’s age. If a child was exceptionally big for his or her age, then the child would be able to start in or be required to switch to the next league at a somewhat younger age. If a child was exceptionally small for his or her age, then the child would not be able to start in or to switch to the next league until they were a little older.


A certain minimum level of discipline is needed in school to provide an environment conducive to learning. Students that disrupt classes or bully other students need to learn better behavior. Students that are subjected to bad behavior or bullying need to learn how to handle the bad behavior of others in a constructive way. In addition, the video surveillance of the classes and the other areas of the school that I previously mentioned could help to prevent some problems and could make it easier to investigate the problems that do occur.

All students should attend some classes that would teach them what was appropriate behavior and how to handle individuals and groups who do not behave appropriately. These classes should also give students a clear idea of what the consequences would be for not behaving in an appropriate manner, and how to take responsibility for their actions. At appropriate intervals, students would attend refresher classes where they would learn what new freedoms they had earned and what additional punishments they could now receive for their bad behavior.

Students that repeatedly demonstrate bad behavior would need to be removed from the school environment until they had matured enough to behave appropriately. Although suspending students from school will make things better for the other students, it would not help the offending students to learn to behave and could cause them to fall behind in their schoolwork. A better idea would be to segregate them in a place where they could get some needed counseling and be able to watch videos of the classes that they could not attend.

Dress Code

Most, if not all, schools have some sort of dress code. These dress codes may go anywhere from being very lenient to requiring students to wear a prescribed school uniform. With a lenient dress code, students have the freedom to wear just about whatever they are most comfortable and best able to learn in. On the other hand, having everyone wear a uniform can remove many clothing related distractions and foster a better sense of student unity and safety.

Although I think school uniforms have many advantages over letting students have too much freedom to wear just about whatever they want, they can be too expensive for some families. A better approach would be to impose more of a business casual look. While in school, we would want students to present a professional appearance, just as they should if they were to work in an office. As needed, students could change for things like school shop classes and after school activities.


Many communities are now providing vouchers so that students can attend a private school. The idea is that if the public school is unable to provide an adequate education, a student should be able to attend a private school where they can get a better education. For the student that gets the voucher, this can potentially be a good thing, although it may mean more time traveling to a school that is farther away. For the students that must stay in the public school, it can actually make things worse.

Larger schools usually have larger budgets, which would give them the flexibility to offer their students a larger array of academic and extracurricular activities than smaller schools could offer. If too many students get vouchers, it could drain a lot of the school’s budget, which could leave it without enough funds to support some of their academic and extracurricular options. This could make the public school even less capable of providing an adequate education, which could cause more parents to want vouchers.


Instead of resorting to vouchers, we should be working to improve the public schools. First off, we need to have some minimum standards set by our federal Department of Education that all schools in all states most meet. These standards should apply to the condition of school buildings, to the qualifications for teachers, to what academics must be taught, and to other things.

It would then be up to each state to ensure that all their schools have sufficient funding to provide an adequate education for all their students in well-maintained and up to date facilities. The various economic changes that I have outlined should ensure that the citizens of each school district would be able to afford to support their schools adequately. Until these economic changes take place, the state and federal governments should provide any financial help that is needed.

The states would also audit the school budgets to ensure they are not wasting money. The states should do mandatory inspections to ensure that all the public-school facilities are kept up to standards and are up to the job. Our school buildings and grounds need to be kept clean and safe, and there needs to be adequate space for classrooms, offices, etc. for all the students, teachers and staff.

We also need to ensure that our teachers are doing a good job and being adequately paid. In most cases, they probably are doing a good job, but we should strive to get and to keep the best teachers possible. That also means paying the better teachers more. School administrators can do part of the job by observing their teachers’ classroom work and reviewing the assignments and exams they give. A state education board can help by comparing the performance of teachers at different schools and ensuring that students at all schools are being taught by the best teachers.

Parents and students should also be able to provide some feedback. Administrators could get students to fill out evaluations and check with parents to see if they had any input. Whenever possible, we could give parents and students an opportunity to vote on which teacher they want to teach a given class, but this would need to be done carefully so that students simply do not vote for whichever teacher would give less homework or higher grades.

Higher Education

With some students progressing at different rates in different subjects, some students may be ready for college level classes in some subjects while trying to finish off classes in other subjects. Therefore, it would be good for schools to provide some entry level college courses that would be taught by college professors and would earn a student college credit. This would give students who may not otherwise be ready for college an easy way to get started on a college education. The same could be done for trade school classes.

Colleges and trade schools should also transition from using a class schedule with semesters to using one with quarters. This would help by giving students the flexibility to start college or trade school classes every quarter instead of waiting for the next semester to start.

We also want to keep the same level of classes going year-round instead of only offering a few summer classes. This would give students more flexibility in scheduling more classes to graduate sooner or having a lighter class load so that they could work more. If a student wanted or needed to take a quarter off, it could be any appropriate quarter and not necessarily the one in the summer.

Today, there are many jobs that are unfilled, because we do not have enough workers with the right skills. To help fix this situation, we could add some additional financial incentive for students to learn the skills needed for these jobs. We could track what jobs need more workers and what jobs have too many workers.

Students taking classes to fill jobs that need workers could get reduced tuition, but students taking classes to fill jobs where there are already too many skilled workers would have to pay a higher tuition. Of course, if a student did not get an appropriate job to match what they learned, they should be required to reimburse the school for any reduced tuition.

Continuing Education

The current rapid pace of technological change is causing big changes in the type of work that businesses need to have done. In some professions, workers need to learn new ways of doing their current work. In addition, the need for many types of jobs is being reduced or eliminated, and many entirely new jobs are being created. These changes are driving a need for many individuals to learn new skills and an increasing need for continuing education.

One of the best ways for businesses to get the skilled workers they need is to have their current best employees learn them. They could learn new skills to become more productive in their current job, or to learn the skills needed to move into a better job. To do this, businesses need to adjust their work schedules and provide financial assistance so that their employees have time to continue their education. Of course, businesses would want to provide financial aid on the condition that employees stay at their jobs for a minimum amount of time.

To support all the needed continuing education, colleges and trade schools need to provide more classes at times when working individuals can attend. For those classes that teach the skills that are needed for the jobs that are currently in demand, we also need to provide lower tuition so that we can encourage more individuals to learn these skills and to switch to the needed occupations and professions.

One thing that will help with all this continuing education is the concept of spreading out the work that I talked about in a previous section on Jobs. With work being spread out, not only will more of us have work and our taxes will be lower, but we will have more free time to continue our education. In turn, continuing education will allow us to continue advancing in our carriers and professions, which in turn will help our economy stay strong and help us all prosper.

Tuition Control

The problems of high tuition costs and student loan debt have been increasing. High tuition puts college and university educations out of the reach of many students. Many other students need to take on a lot of student loan debt, which may take them decades to pay off.

In some cases, costs are rising due to our ever-increasing technology. Schools need to spend more to buy all the technology that students will need to learn how to use and to make to get the jobs that use that technology. This really cannot be avoided, but the cost should be paid for by the students that need to learn how to use and to make this technology and not all the students that do not need it. This could be done by having higher cost for taking classes that need that technology.

One of the main reasons for higher education costs is that colleges and universities are adding more non-education related amenities. These include simple things like new food courts, and walking and biking paths, to such extravagant things as a free movie theater, a 25-person hot tub and spa, a lazy river ride and whirlpool, a leisure pool with biometric hand scanners for secure entry, and a 50-foot climbing wall. Colleges and universities are increasingly adding these extra amenities to attract more students.

However, colleges and universities should not be raising tuitions or student fees for everyone to pay for their extra amenities. Each student should be given the option to choose and to pay for just what they want. In fact, it would be best if a college did not add these amenities themselves, but to allow or to encourage private investment in these types of amenities. That way, students and others in the community could join and go to these places when they choose and could afford to go.

Another reason that college tuition is rising is the cost of sports programs. Although there are a few colleges and universities that make money or at least break even on them, most lose money, which must be recovered via higher tuition and student fees. Schools may say that their sports programs are an integral part of student life, but that really should be left up to the individual student to decide whether they want to pay to support a sports program that they do not take part in or not.

There has been a lot of talk recently about having the government subsidize or pay for a college education. However, this does nothing to address the real problem, and only shifts the costs of college education onto others. In fact, if the government pays for a student's education, there would be no incentive for colleges to reduce their costs or for students to shop around for the best education value for their dollar. In fact, without cost being a determining factor in a student's choice, colleges would have even more incentive to add expensive amenities to attract students, which would raise costs for all of us who would end up paying for these college and university educations.

Another way to make it easier for students to pay for a college or university degree would be for them to work for it. I for one worked at a part-time or a full-time job during most of the time that I attended a few colleges and universities on a part time basis, and only went to school full time during my last semester at the university where I earned my Bachelor of Arts degree. I only had one student loan when I first started school, and I paid that off right away.

Working full time and going to school part time worked for me and may work for some others, but it may not work for everyone. The same could be said for going to school full-time and not working. It may work for some students who can afford it, but a better approach for most of us may be splitting our time between school and work. This could work something like continuing education but could be much more.

When a student first enters a college or university, some may not really know what type of work they want to do. They may have some ideas, but they have not committed to a given profession or career. In this case, they could enter a program where they would start taking classes while working part time at various jobs related to the professions and careers that they thought they might be interested in. In time, these jobs could hopefully help them make a much more informed decision about what work they wanted to do.

Once a student knew what they wanted to do, they would enter a program to learn that profession or career. The idea would be to have a formal program where the student would go to school part time, and then work in a job related to their desired profession or career. Nearby businesses would have positions for these part-time students. The student could then earn enough to pay for all or part of their education, while also being able to apply and reinforce what they were learning in school in their job. The businesses could benefit by being able to mold these students into the workers that they would need, and by having access to the latest ideas being taught at the time.

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Overpopulation - Reducing our Overpopulation so that our lives can be richer.

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Monday, January 08, 2024
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