January 18, 2007

Charles Murray's Intelligence Trilogy in WSJ

Intelligence in the Classroom (Jan. 16)
Half of all children are below average, and teachers can do only so much for them.
Hardly anyone will admit it, but education's role in causing or solving any problem cannot be evaluated without considering the underlying intellectual ability of the people being educated.
What's Wrong With Vocational School? (Jan. 17)
Too many Americans are going to college.
Put another way, it makes sense for only about 15% of the population, 25% if one stretches it, to get a college education. And yet more than 45% of recent high school graduates enroll in four-year colleges.

Aztecs vs. Greeks (Jan. 18)
Those with superior intelligence need to learn to be wise.
All of the above are antithetical to the mindset that prevails in today's schools at every level. The gifted should not be taught to be nonjudgmental; they need to learn how to make accurate judgments. They should not be taught to be equally respectful of Aztecs and Greeks; they should focus on the best that has come before them, which will mean a light dose of Aztecs and a heavy one of Greeks. The primary purpose of their education should not be to let the little darlings express themselves, but to give them the tools and the intellectual discipline for expressing themselves as adults.

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