COVID Diaries Week 25: Ambivalence.

School starts back next week. Lola is off to high school, and into a student bubble cohort. The grade 11-12s are going to school in the basement of a Jewish community centre across the road. Grade 7 are only allowed in one part of a single corridor. All the prep letters from the school are about how to move around the school. Not a mention of education.

Welcome to COVID school.

Zoe is pushing for the “remote schooling” option, I think because she thinks it is going to be easier than spending 6 hours in school every day, and with parents like Lori and I, probably true. A 30-min zoom call to start the day, a plan for execution, partially fulfilled around watching Netflix, if the initial COVID school experiment is any indication.

Both the kids talk about going to university before becoming fabulously wealthy and living in Hawaii. However, neither of them seem to have any appreciation for school per se.

Boring, restricting – for very different reasons. Zoe because she is a free spirit with a mind that turns from activity to activity with bewildering speed. Lola, because there is not enough rigour in the process.

The ambivalence might come from their doting parents. Neither of us are aspirational about education, although I am over-educated through intellectual laziness to do anything else.

I am a huge fan of the rantings of Prof G – Scott Galloway. His latest education diatribe is about disruption to higher Ed caused by Google micro-certifications. Who really needs a 3-4 year degree program (especially if facilitated remotely via Zoom calls)?! Very few people – unless they need a lab to experiment.

I hope my kids start their own pathway through this crazy world where the learning is continuous and iterative and networked; and they can avoid the establishment process slowing them down and putting them into neat boxes – ones that society then determines are worthless anyway.

David Graeber died this week, sadly. He wrote Bullshit Jobswhere most of us scrape by. We can do better than that, but not if we follow the well-worn path of our forebears. We need to beat a new path. And by ‘we’, I mean th e kidz.

So another school year begins, COVID Year 1. Good luck everyone.

This Much We Know.

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