“You’d think that schools would naturally nurture deep community bonds. But we live in an era and under a testing regime that emphasizes individual accomplishments, not community cohesion.”
Thus began the focus of conservative writer David Brooks’ New York Times Column on Nov. 27. Brooks argues that schools have become all about individual accomplishments, not community cohesion. “Even when schools talk about values, they tend to talk about individualistic values, like grit, resilience and executive function, not the empathy, compassion and solidarity that are good for the community and the heart.”
Harvard researchers conducted a study of 10,000 middle and high school students who were asked if their parents cared more about personal achievement or whether they were kind decent people, 80 percent of the students said their parents cared more about personal achievement — individual over the group, Brooks wrote.
So, if this is what grade schools produce, I wonder what sort of leaders will emerge from the graduate schools of management in 15 years or so. It is hard to cultivate character when you are only in it for yourself.
© 2021 John Gregory Self