The modern schooling system in most countries takes a “one size and way fits all” approach. Schools try to create a way to teach people in one big general way. In theory, this isn’t a bad idea. We don’t want people to be left out in something as important as the education system, do we?
In practice, the “one size and way fits all” approach doesn’t work. There are many people with learning disorders and disabilities (we’ll get to stuff like ADHD later) where the general system doesn’t work that much for them. Many schools generally try to provide a sort of “optimization” for that, such as letting some students having extended time for assignments, or letting them use calculators on math tests. But that doesn’t go far enough. The approach we have in most schools in generalist, not individualist.
An individual type of schooling system in theory might be a far better practice. But it’s not necessarily theory. Take Finland for example, a country with an individualist education system. Students generally take tests in these countries which are measured, and the results of their tests determines what type of learning and classes they’ll get. Finland scores really high on test scores. In most countries, however, we still enforce the old 19th century factory model upon generations of students, each newer and newer. We generally force certain subjects such as English, Math, etc on people who may be terrible at such subjects.
Not only is this old 19th century schooling model killing creativity, but it is also killing individualism. Bad grades in general subjects will kill a students’ confidence. They don’t know their true potential in other subjects, and therefore don’t know how to succeed in other parts of life. The generalist model of education is not getting the most potential out of students. Not all students are interested in the general subjects, yet we don’t encourage other subjects or specific subjects. We just try to force the “essentials”.
As society continues, I believe eventually we must abandon the “generalist” schooling system. Individualist schooling will eventually be the norm, but when is the question. As long as the “one size and type fits all” system continues to oppress unusual or not-as-promoted abilities and potential of students, our society will not only drain in convergent thinking, but also lack of individualism.