Are schools too relaxed?

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Other  |  House: Booksie Classic

Submitted: April 20, 2019

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Submitted: April 20, 2019

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Each school is relatively different and the type of education depends on location and the people. I've personally noticed that the older people tend to think schools have lost the ability to discipline kids. That's probably true to some extent, and I can imagine that elementary schools especially are more laid back nowadays, but I'm not sure.

When I was in elementary school, it was a lot stricter than secondary school. We had more rules, which is okay since the younger kids are the more rules they usually need. We weren't allowed to use our phones at school, which is apparently nowadays also true for many schools. It wasn't an issue to most of us, as I'm the generation that was in the middle. I was born in 2000, so my age group is good with technology, but we missed the afwul time of having smart phones as kids. My first phone was a crappy Nokia. My second phone was a clamshell phone and then I went from there. I can imagine that not having your phone for a few hours a day can be hard, because the kids who are now in elementary school grew up having a smart phone. 

The rule that no one really nowadays cares about, was having to stand up when a teacher came into the classroom. It was for good conduct and then we'd usually just say our good mornings as a group. No one ever did that in secondary or high school, and I have no idea if it's common in elementary schools nowadays or not.

Going to secondary school, we got a lot of freedom. We were allowed to use our phones during breaks. We obviously were on our phones during class as well, which is very common nowadays. All students do that. We also didn't have to go outside during breaks, which was great, as the weather is shitty about 90% of the time here. We got one break for lunch, which was different, and no one made sure you ate. We were allowed to walk to places by ourselves instead of going as a group. If we had PE and we were going skiing, we didn't go together. The teacher told us when to be where and you got there. It was nice, and it gave everyone a great opportunity of going to buy candy and an energy drink for lunch because the school food sucked.

High school is voluntary in Finland, so we got a lot of freedom there. Technically, showing up was your job, if you didn't do it, that's on you. You didn't have to do anything. You could drop out and that was your choise. We got to leave the school area during breaks, which was great, especially since our school was right next to the secondary school and they would always watch us as we walked past them and laughed because they couldn't go get coffee from the nearby store.

Overall, school is pretty relaxed here, opposed to many other countries. That's probably because teachers don't really have any authority unless you decide to give it them. They're not allowed to hurt you, god no. They can yell at you but that is very frowned upon, and if you insult a student, you're fired. A lot of students respect their teachers, but not as teachers. Just as human beings. Honestly, it's probably the culture. We don't usually treat older people with respect just because they're old because why would we? Same goes for teachers. Just because they're teachers, doesn't mean we have to respect them.

It leads to the situation where it's totally okay for a student to tell a teacher how stupid they are. They don't know everything, and if you know something better than your teacher, you're going to tell them they're wrong, just as you would to a friend. I've corrected my teachers several times if they've been wrong about something and it's totally okay. I've talked shit about other teachers with my teachers and that's totally okay too. 

The funy thing about that is that you end up becoming friends with your teachers. Especially in high school, because you're all adults. Especially if you're eighteen, the chances of running into your teacher at a local bar are quite high. I personally think it's fun having the relaxed relationship between my teachers. One great example was me and my friends visiting our secondary school on the last day of high school in February (it's a big celebration for seniors, we dress up and throw candy to younger students and usually haze the shit out of them in the process) and we met our history teacher. She was great, we loved her during our school years. She had just gotten back to work from maternity leave and was happy to see us and realize we have plans. Then she made us come to her class and tell the 7th graders how it's important to know your history and politics, which is true. We also visited our math teacher and she offered us coffee and we agreed to meet at a bar later that day. 

Schools nowadays are relaxed, but I don't see that as a bad thing. It requires more from both students and teachers, as both end up needing more self discipline. That might be hard for smaller kids but seriously, if a teenager, let alone someone who's eighteen, can't spend an hour without their phone, then that's an issue. In my opinion, having a relaxed learning environment motivates people to learn and they don't have to worry about fucking up or some weird etiquette thing they might have forgotten. 


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