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Public Education Gives More Than Education

Do we need all of our classes?

Let me start off by saying, yes, I have been that guy. There's always one special snowflake in the room that shouts, "When are we actually going to use this? We won't even remember it by the time it comes up!" Of course, I am talking about any and all high school math—and gym—units of study. Don't get me wrong, I grew into a smarter, more knowledgeable if not any taller young man, but I truly did not believe there was a purpose for these sort of courses beyond the basics if they weren't what your field of work was going to focus on. 

But let it be known, people in the Internet: As shocking as it is, there is not a single class in my high school curriculum that I have regretted in retrospect. Every class, whether I had passed, failed or had been mediocre in, had an absolute positive effect on me. A lot of high schoolers are becoming that kid in the back of the class, who thought he knew how the Real World and the Man handled things out of the "corrupt" Geneva Bubble. But no, in reality, you will use most if not all of your math skills, you will thank your lucky stars that gym class kept you out of childhood obesity (even if you had to play Flickerball, which I am not sure exists outside of public school), and so glad that you took chemistry because even though you got a C- on it, there is one of those bulky, wooden and completely un-shiny plaques out there waiting to tell you that, hey, at least you tried.

The main point is that no matter if a class is boring or hard or too easy—even if you didn't learn anything from it by the end, you at least had the experience of it, and what makes us into fully matured human beings without experience? We build ourselves not only from friendship, love, family and deep connections, but through memories and intelligence, as well. That calculus test may not be the most fascinating course ever, but it is taking you one step closer to becoming an adult, You get to experience how the world operates just from a couple simple word problems and answers, without even leaving your suburb. You have the opportunity to dissect a pig's fetus in anatomy and learn just how fascinating the mindset of a serial killer can be in psychology and learning history and beautiful works of art in art classes and English classes. We get some of the world's most profound texts right in the public library! The whole world is at our disposal from a high school education—we just have to wake up and realize just how lucky we are to be a part of this system.

So don't say that you're not getting anything out of these classes. You're getting art, literature, how to design a building, how to set up a camera, how the consumer market works and more. Don't just shout, "When are we going to use this?" to the teacher—because with an attitude like that, you'll never find out just how many doors of opportunity an eclectic education can open for you.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

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