Why is Formal Education Important?

“The function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically. Intelligence plus character – that is the goal of true education” – Martin Luther King

Experiences and peculiar situations in life will always help you grow exponentially as an individual. However, formal education has a gamut of perks that resonate in a variety of professions. Doctors, lawyers, estheticians, and other experts owe credit to their formal education. 

We are here to discuss the benefits that formal education brings to the development of society as a whole. 

General Knowledge

The education system of a school works towards the all-round development of an individual. There are a variety of subjects that are equally essential for the progression of a student over their school years. An individual’s future largely depends on the formative years, the career choices, the general attitude and survival instincts are all developed over a period of time.

There is a never-ending debate on why some people disagree that formal education like school is unimportant. While that may be one side of the argument, we ought to give formal education a fair chance. 

We may be pursuing a particular field of study right now or might be pursuing a career in a specific domain. Still, the fact that we possess knowledge about other subjects, even if it is just a basic understanding, is the work of general knowledge possessed at school.

Having some amount of knowledge about a particular subject is any day better than having none at all. Gathering a plethora of information as knowledge never did any harm. You can be confident about any topic and convey information that you want to, as you know it.

It helps you comprehend a concept, forms your own opinions about it and helps your curiosity stay healthy. 

Choosing a specialization

A segway from discussing the benefits of general knowledge would be how it helps us choose a specialization.

If it were not for the many subjects that school offered you to study, how would you know what your interests lie in and what you have no regard for? 

Much like the theory of good and evil – you don’t know what’s good if you don’t comprehend the concept of evil.

Similarly, if you were not exposed to a variety of subject matters and different disciplines of study, how would you understand what you enjoy studying or what you don’t. 

Having a formal education supports and nurtures your choice. Even if you do happen to choose a field of study that your school did not offer, it is best to have attended formal education to recognize what you do not want to pursue and where your interests lie otherwise. 

It probably was completely different from what you were made to study in school. We would have all had a particular subject that we weren’t good at, hence disliked it and only expected to see that textbook in the burning pits of hell. 

Identity formation

Some argue that formal education does not teach us anything, and this certainly varies with different perspectives. 

Although often not appreciated by many, formal education systems do help with key aspects of an individual’s life, like socialization and identity formation.

Who we are or what we identify ourselves as, what our likes and dislikes might be, are concepts formed on our own because of the process of socialization that formal education has to offer.

A group of students are put into one concrete building every single day to learn. While this might seem like a rigid system, it would be unfair to under appreciate the many things that we learn.

The kind of personality we develop, our interests and passions, and forming an understanding of who we are and what we want to be, stem from the education system. 

We might rebel against this system, but if it were not for the comprehension of what the system is, we would not have known what we might have wanted it to be. 

Moral values

Moral values are another aspect of a schooling system, even though left unnoticed, it does play a pivotal role in our lives. 

Truth, charity, acceptance, freedom, and forgiveness are great moral values. Much of these are learned in our younger years of development. They help form the meaningful connections we had or that we currently have. 

Moral values protect us. Understanding the concepts of these values and acknowledging the minor differences between a moral value and disrespect is something that formal education lays the foundation with.

Suppose today you can fully comprehend the difference between being unaware and being ignorant – which is a very fine line between the two. In that case, it is because of your bedrock knowledge that you possessed at a very young age through education, be it formal or informal. 

Conclusion

While some people say ‘education is free,’ the truth at hand would be that knowledge is free. The institution of education and education systems offer a lot more than we often care to consider.  

There are numerous aspects of who we are today that owe credits to the subtle principles that formal education has laid down for us. 

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