A home educating parent once mentioned that primary school level maths and English is 90% of what you need to know for everyday life as an adult an in most of employment. The remaining 10% can be learned as and when it is required. Most of what is taught in secondary school is not required for everyday life or most of employment.
Therefore is secondary school a waste of time from the perspective of education and knowledge?
I don't agree. I think that secondary school is important for a lot of reasons. Is it perfect? Not at all. There are some issues with what's being taught and how it's taught, but the skillset you build at secondary school is really helpful for later life, whether that is academic knowledge, mental resilience or behavioural moderation. Remember, not everything you learn at school is learned within the classroom!x
What you are referring to is the hidden curriculum.
It is intriguing - and possibly cause for concern - that official bodies only focus on the academic side of school, and ignore and overlook the social side, but British society takes an interest in the social side of school with a significant proportion of adults holding a view that school is essential for both socialisation and learning social skills. One of the most common questions fired at home educating parents is how their children will socialise or learn social skills if they don't go to school. This question is far more common than questions relating to whether the children can learn academic stuff outside of school. It also highlights a rift between official bodies and society.
The kids I know who are home schooled get lots of socialisation within the groups they are part of such as drama groups etc and good old playing with their friends.
More often than not, that is the case.
IMO the social skills learned / required at secondary school are actually school survival skills rather than social skills for life as an adult. With the possible exception of certain types of jobs (armed forces? call centres?) they are of little relevance and use for life as an adult.
My own experience reveals a recurring phenomenon of parents who strive to get the social skills of their children with AS 'right' for life at secondary school and for life as a teenager with the belief that their social skills will automatically and systematically be 'right' for life as an adult when they leave school. In reality it rarely works out and often causes more harm than good. Part of the problem is having to unlearn stuff required for life at secondary school and for life as a teenager when moving on to the next stage in life. I have experienced 20 somethings with AS who after receiving intensive social skills training for teenage life as teenagers still think and act like teenagers so have difficulty living life as a young adult and holding down employment as a result.
Yeah, it seems like education and social skills training etc is simply about getting people to act and behave in the same uniform way. School taught me no social skills, other than as you suggested, survival skills that should not be needed, surely, in a kind, loving and supportive environment. I’m all for unlearning, which is a bit like homeschooling but the kids decide what they want to do. They learn all the skills, facts, figures etc that they need, including, crucially, how to think for themselves, how to make decisions, they learn what they enjoy, what they’re good at, what naturally draws their intetest. Self esteem, compassion and love for others is a natural by product of this type of learning. Their minds aren’t fixed on what other people think they should think about, how they should act, behave and spend their time. Children schooled in this way are often in business and creating an income by the time they’re 10 years old. It’s fun to them and they’re also building up money so they have fewer obstacles in the way of them pursuing whatever they want to in life.