Thursday, September 17, 2020


In light of now well-established scientific consensus, the principle of domain-specific knowledge as central to skills like critical thinking should be accepted by all rational people as truth. It demolishes the claim that our schools are teaching all-purpose skills like critical thinking through ad hoc child-chosen or teacher-chosen content. 

The general-skills myth has endured partly because it has enabled high officials to avoid the criticism and controversy that attends the actual specification of content.

 The persistence of the myth of critical thinking enables them to sidestep responsibility with a good conscience. We need to let them know the emphatic scientific consensus. 

It is essential that the public demand specific grade-by-grade content in our schools, so that one grade can build on another in a systematic way, a kind of schooling that is best for all students and especially beneficial to our least-advantaged students.

E.D. Hirsch, How to Educate a Citizen [2020] (126-127). Harper. Kindle Edition.

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