The banking concept of education is oppressive
Debate Rounds (3)
The role of a teacher is to provide facts with explanations and reason behind those explanations. A teacher is supposed to make the material more understandable to the pupils. Freire says that "knowledge is a gift bestowed by those who consider themselves knowledgeable upon those whom they consider to know nothing". Teachers acquire the feelings of superiority, dominance, and authority just because they are getting paid to teach those who know nothing. Yet, Freire claims that teachers know nothing as well.
Over the years teachers have projected ignorance amongst students who "receive, file, and store" this ignorance into their minds. Freire argues that as a teacher attempts to teach students, the students are teaching the teachers as well. The banking concept of education is oppressive because it "minimizes the students" creative power" and allows them to believe and memorize every word that comes out the instructor"s mouth. The banking concept of education makes students merely gullible at the same time ignorant because they have memorized information without knowledge and meaning behind it.
Again, lack of communication makes it difficult for relationships to work compatibly with one another, which leads to a wrongfully taught education.
Just because teachers teach information that the students may not fully understand does not make it oppressive. I am sure many people have left a classroom after a discussion not really understanding the entire concept that was just taught to them. That does not make education oppressive; it ultimately makes it a process. Even the smartest of men was once without knowledge. This leads me to my next point. As Hirsch said, "It is the background information, stored in their minds, that enables them to take up a newspaper and read it [...] relating what they read to the unstated context ." Although you stated that teachers have no knowledge, I believe this to be false. Teachers are purposely placed in front of a classroom to guide students in the right path of their education, not to feel superior among others (as you previously stated). And what does this guidance entail? It entails teaching the students about the common knowledge that they will need in order to fully grasp whatever comes there way later in life. This is what Hirsch means. In order to read a newspaper, you have to know how to read. Teachers are there to help the students with their readings, not to tell them what to read, which would definitely be oppressive. Without them how would students read? How would they write? How would they speak? In this way education is not oppressive, rather it is a process that requires common knowledge which is provided by teachers.
Freire mentions that "Those who use the banking approach, knowingly or unknowingly, fail to perceive that the deposits themselves contain contradictions about reality". Which leads me back to my first point in this round, it is highly possible that what the instructor has taught and what the student has memorized does not match what happens in reality. For example, if an instructor says that terrorists from Afghanistan were the reason behind 9/11, a student might begin to believe that everyone from Afghanistan is out to harm the United States. What the student should know is that it"s not everyone from Afghanistan or people from there want to harm us, it"s a universal matter. Different countries have tried to harm the U.S. and are still in the process of doing so. In situations like these, students can begin to change their beliefs and values about the real world. Freire says that "these contradictions may lead formerly passive students to turn against their domestications and attempt to domesticate reality".
The banking concept of education is oppressive because students have no understanding behind the history of slaves, the history of the United States, or the history of long division and how it works. It is oppressive because the relationship between students and teachers does not flow so well because the lack of communication. The students simply absorb the information with no reciprocal actions for the teacher. It is oppressive because teachers believe they know everything while students are viewed to know nothing. Lastly, as stated, it is oppressive because student are learning nothing but memorizing a lot.
Education requires two beings: one to teach and inform, and one to listen and think. The teacher stands in front of the room to directly inform all the students respectively, not to gain a sudden burst of confidence and authority. The student must have an open mind in order to grasp the information because in many instances it might be the first time they are even receiving that information. After all, those who are students wish to learn new information that they have never learned before, which makes the "banking system" of education a mind boggling process instead of an oppression.
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