Sam, Production Associate @ PBS KIDS Digital, VA
Imagine your child (or one you care about deeply) is now in their 30s – out of school and starting into adult life. What do you hope for them about their life? What would make it a ‘good’ life?
First and foremost, if they are happy. Happy and fulfilled in all aspects of their life - emotionally, socially, and professionally. Whatever they are aspiring for, I want their happiness to be at the center of that. I think to be happy in a lot of ways is a balance of your desires and your needs: when your goals are in sight, or being met, or being worked towards, that can bring you happiness. When you feel overall that you are in a positive place surrounded by positive people working towards positive things that bring you joy – that is happiness.
What role do you think schooling should play in achieving that ideal good life?
In a formal sense it can be a very positive or very negative part of anyone’s life. A lot of times this is determined by the circumstances you were born into – the things you have and cannot change. Sometimes it is a forced fit and not a natural fit. In a formal sense, schooling can open doors but in a lot of situations it is restrictive and difficult – schooling is very different than learning or education.
Do you think schools are currently playing that role/doing what they should (for you/your child and for everyone)?
I think right now – it is a matter of really working for some people and really not for others. Unfortunately, we are getting even wider inequality really because of our schooling and because our formal education system is so different and complex based on every state and every town and every area of our country. It just creates so much inequality based on all of these factors that are somewhat out of our control.
What is the purpose of education?
I believe the purpose of education is to transform your life in a positive way. I think education can and should, at its best, expand your world and make you more human and help you be more compassionate and more aware. It can help you connect with not just the people around you but with people all over the world. It can enable you to bring that humanity and life to the center and purpose of everything you do.