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When we look at the world, we know that we’re all different. We don’t act the same and don’t look the same. Our brains don’t work in the same way, in unison. If it did, then there would be such thing as free will. We’d all function based on the equivalent of computer code in our mind. But that’s not how the world works, and we accept that. We cater to the different people, ideologies and unique differences between single individuals. With one notable exception. We don’t change the game when it comes to academic achievement. To achieve academically, you either pass the test or you fail. You either get a great grade in that essay, or you fail. This is how we judge people through school life and onwards into their college career. Sure there are other factors at play here. If you exceed in a sport or social activity, you could win a scholarship to college with average grades. But this isn’t true everywhere. In most cases we determine the future of a school pupil based on the end of year grades.

If they fail, they hard work they might have completed the rest of the year is virtually wiped out. In the time it takes to answer a, b or c, their future could be down the toilet. Now, you might think this isn’t an issue. After all, there has to be a grading system otherwise no one would be able to achieve anything. It would be the end of capitalism as we know it. Before you call me a communist, allow me to present one important fact.

As I said, we’re all different. We don’t learn in the same way. Some people will never exceed in exam conditions. Others won’t be able to write a cohesive essay because it’s not the way their mind works. Does that mean they are less intelligent compared to someone who achieves higher grades? Society would deem this to be so based on the educational rules we live by now. But it’s simply not the case.

We know this because there are countless examples of people who dropped out of school and went on to achieve great things. They couldn’t survive in the school environment, but once they were free, the possibilities became endless. So, if you struggle in school, perhaps that’s an option to consider. You can drop out and find your own way in the world at an early age.

Or maybe it’s time to use some of the cheat sheets left lying around. Perhaps we should start leveling the playing field. If you’re not great at writing essays, you could use 50+ essay banks to write essay. By doing this, you can form something from a collective group of previous ideas. This isn’t plagiarism; it’s a way to create something new from other people’s work. After all, no idea is entirely original. Take Harry Potter as an example. The books were widely praised as a brilliant, original concept beautifully told. But look deeper and you will see the book uses history of World War II to create a fantasy plot. The same is true for many other examples of fiction.

If you’re struggling to learn in college or school, maybe you should try to find the form of learning that works for you. It may not be listening to lectures all day or interactions. Some people do learn by simply sitting down with a good book. Others can’t do this because they are distracted too easily. Instead, they need to be more proactive, perhaps highlighting the pages. If that’s not the answer, then perhaps audio learning is. You can record what you need to learn and listen to it before going to sleep. That way, you might absorb the information you need and store it in your long-term memory.

It’s not wise to suggest that you dismiss school completely. Even if it doesn’t use the form of learning that works for you, it can still provide great experiences. But at the same time, you should focus on something that you love outside of school life. If music is your passion, start a band. Or if it’s art, build up a portfolio of work. It may not lead to a future career, but you can’t completely dismiss the possibility.

It seems clear that the current model of school doesn’t work for everyone. That’s why the dropout rate is higher than it should be. At the same time, though, there is no reform to be seen on the horizon. For now, the individual must make the decisions to alter their future for the better.

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