Wednesday, June 21, 2017
Playing off Arnold Kling's Clarifying his Null Hypotheses on Schooling
Here is Arnold answering:
The null hypothesis: do I really believe it?
My null hypothesis says that spending more (inflation adjusted) on schooling than was spent in 1960 (that's about 1/3 of what is spent today) has no positive effect on measured student academic outcomes.
Also that only a tiny fraction (perhaps .1%) of schools are good or bad schools. The rest are judged good or bad because they have good or bad students. So parents should relax and only try to avoid the worst .1% of schools and not pay more for a home in a “good” school district.
My mother has told me that her parents went to school for just 1 year, yet they where educated. They were not superstitious as many where in their era. They could read and write and do arithmetic. They read books. They owned and ran a barber shop they speculated on real-estate (but lost most but not all of it in the great depression) and sent their son to Brown University. School is not only place people learn.
Perhaps 3 years of formal schooling would be enough for most people. Nevertheless in the modern world we'd need something for them to do so maybe keeping most in school to 16 is a good idea, not so much for education but to keep them out of trouble. The Amish drop out early and do OK.
For a modern example, the guy who invented this
claims to have dropped out of school at 14 years old.
Also, if we cannot teach children more and it looks like we cannot, we should focus on teaching the most valuable stuff.
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