The Five Main
Purposes of an Education
Dr. Max Rafferty
I think there are 5 main purposes of an education. We have lost
sight of them in serious degrees. Let’s review these major purposes:
- To pursue the truth
No matter where it may be or how cleverly it may be concealed.
It’s a never-ending chase, of course, and has little to do with political correctness or
political agendas. The very search for it, though, cannot but
ennoble those who spend their lives in such a quest.
2. To hand down the cultural heritage of the race.
We are talking about American culture as was part of United
States heritage. Our language, our ethics of
self-reliance, being good to your neighbor, that the individual was more
important than the state. The family was the strong base of our civilization.
3. To teach organized, disciplined, systematic subject matter.
Not life adjustment, togetherness, ingroupness
or happy, easy, comfortable acceptance by one’s
peer group. To be successful is to have knowledge of specific subject matter
and the ability to use it productively.
4. To help the individual realize his own potential.
Up until the 50s concern with the individual was the be-all and
the end-all of public education. We had better get the individual back into the
educational spotlight unless, of course, we
want to opt for the ant-hill, mass-Pavlonian-reflex training which the
one-worlders and the U.N. have substituted for real education.
5. To ensure the survival of our country.
There are those who want the “end of nationhood as it has
been historically defined”. As for the citizens of this country we want our sovereignty
and our nation as it was, strong and valiant, staying
out of entangling alliances, being free and moral. We
need to relearn the lessons of history and all the wisdom of our Founding
So let us move with courage and conviction
that we can once again reclaim the knowledge, wisdom, morality and upward reach
we once knew in this land of the free and home of the brave.
By Dr. Max Rafferty, California Superintendent of Public
From July 1967 Human Events