Posted in Educational Reform, Inspiration

Education by Allowing, Instead of by Decree

The paradox of a compulsory education is that what is compulsory is supposedly both essential AND dictated.  But if something is truly essential, it need not be dictated, because people will want it naturally.  Dictates and rules can only make us do what does not come naturally, never what does come naturally, as the satisfaction of true needs always does.

I have never known a single human being who didn’t want to change the world at some point as a child.  This is an innate impulse that all healthy humans share.  We do not need to dictate what the next generation learns (and if you think about it, how could we?), we only need to empower and enable them to manifest their dreams.  And if you’re still burdened by the mindset that the world is a harsh and demanding place and that forcing kids to learn things they don’t want to in order to fit in is a necessary part of keeping the system running, I’m here to tell you that that is an old and obsolete worldview that we can choose to accept or reject at any time.  Contribution and distinction are basic human needs (along with connection and growth).  Kids want to create a place for themselves in the world and contribute to their families and communities, and they eagerly embrace learning, but they reject rules and constraints that they do not understand.  Instead of acting like we know what kids need to learn, we should instead be empowering and assisting them to learn anything and everything they want.


Dane Dormio is an online tutor and academic coach who specializes in helping all types of students achieve life and academic success, especially homeschooled students and those preparing for STEM careers. More information and resources can be found on his website at

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