Angelina Jolie, superstar mother of six, has recently voiced her discontent with the American educational system. In an interview with The Independent, a UK based newspaper, Jolie shares her, somewhat controversial, opinions about her children’s schooling. It appears as if Jolie believes that we, as a society, are steadily moving ahead, while the educational system has not “caught up with our children and our way of life.”
What Angelina was trying to say is that children need to experience the world for themselves. She would rather her children explore the world, visit museums, read great literature, and learn to play instruments. While the school system teaches children the basics, it does not give them worldly experience. Some knowledge can only be achieved through living and experiencing life.
Jolie’s children are definitely experiencing life. Jolie is a known and celebrated humanitarian. She is an active UNHCR Goodwill ambassador, spending much of her time traveling the world. Her six children are constantly traveling the world with their famous parents. They are not trapped inside of a classroom for hours each day, like the average American child. So it makes sense that the actress would believe the educational system has not “caught up with our children.” Regrettably, most children simply do not have the opportunity to visit third world countries and exotic locales so frequently, if at all.
Although, Jolie does admit that she doesn’t have it all figured out. Even Angelina wishes there were a book that she could read on how to “navigate the through the school system.” Unfortunately, that admittance will not be enough for those offended by her comments. The hard-working individuals working to improve the educational system are not going to appreciate criticism from a woman whose children have never attended public school.
In the actress’s defense, during the interview, Jolie did make every effort to be diplomatic. She did not point fingers at specific groups; she broadly stated that the school system wasn’t up to par. Many people would readily agree with that statement. After all, according to The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, only 71% of all children receive their high school diploma on time.
Angelina has been looking into many other alternatives such as online education. She has stated in many interviews that she would like to personally pursue an education online in which she believes is a better substitute than many graduate programs out in the field.
Jolie also goes on to say that her children do have tutors that travel with them. These tutors are from several different cultures, which helps expose the children to different ways of life. Jolie also claims that she has been trying to get more involved with her children’s education. This struggle for involvement is something that many parents can certainly relate to.
While Angelina’s comments may be a bit controversial, the actress is no stranger to controversy. Before becoming a mother, Angelina was known for her shocking behavior and outspoken nature. A few years ago, these comments would have been considered tame.
Even if Jolie’s comments are mildly abrasive, there’s no doubt that she means well. It would be wonderful if the American educational system could teach children the ways of the modern world. Yet most people would still agree that children need good old-fashioned lessons in reading, writing, and arithmetic.