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No Royal Road

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An interesting thing about education!

The experts are constantly concocting new programs to “improve” the way things are done. The latest at the national level is No Child Left Behind. Here in Utah, it’s Performance Plus.

In years past there have been others. Huge price tags always seem to accompany the reforms. Yet, none, really, has universally succeeded.

It reminds us of an ancient story. Euclid, the father of geometry was asked by King Ptolemy if there weren’t a shortcut to the study of geometry other than working hard and memorizing all of the theorems. Euclid said simply, yet profoundly, “There is no royal road to geometry.”

Nor, in KSL’s view, is there a magical way of reforming the education system in order to achieve widespread excellence.

When learning works, certain fundamentals always seem to exist.

First is the presence of a competent teacher who somehow has the interest of his or her students foremost in mind. Next, is an atmosphere for learning, generally created by that same teacher. Finally, of course, is a brood of willing students with a supportive home environment and a desire to work hard in order to learn.

It’s something to keep in mind amidst all of the professional and political scurrying that’s going on to find that elusive “royal road” to learning.

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