[Marxism] A Modest Proposal (Re: America No. 1?)

Mark Lause MLause at cinci.rr.com
Sat Mar 5 15:02:46 MST 2005

I didn't like having to get grades and don't like having to assign them.
I like any proposal that gets rid of them and it's worth considering
what would make the education system more about education.  Yoshie's
proposal is something a socialist society might want to implement,
though I liked Jim Cannon's idea of working first and retiring when you
reach your mid-20s--and pursuing more education or not, as you desire,
at that point.

Getting rid of grades in a competitive and commercialized system is
about like getting rid of wages because they're not fair.  Certainly,
performance-based grading is not a level playing field, but it is the
only place in the entire system with any kind of potential for social
leveling.  Putting it on any other basis tilts everything entirely in
favor of those with the money to keep investing in course credits, in
effect buying a degree on the installment plan.  

Moreover, the different ways in which these trends have their impact
within higher education is really exaggerating the hierarchies among
institutions that have long existed there.

All of these trends were probably implicit in the expansion of higher
education after World War II, but they've really become starkly evident
since the wave of budget-slashing that's gotten worse and worse since
the 1970s.

Mark L. 

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