You grow up being told that School is the ultimate tool to crave our future, and we need to obey School. You need to learn everything they teach in School. You need to get good grades, you can't skip School, and so on...
Our parents tell us that we need to respect the Teachers. You can't be a troublesome kid, "do what the Teacher tells you to" - and that's how the problem develops.
We, as kids, see that Teachers are the authority. If the Teacher says X, you do X.
But worst of all, the Teacher has the right to say "You failed this exam. Yes, the Teacher has the holy right to fail you - and you'll need to take the exam again and again, until he decides you can pass.
(side-note: this is seen much clearer in Universities/Colleges, as opposed to High Schools/Primary or Secondary School)
Teachers know this, and a very lot of them overuse this power. It's going to their head - a lot of Teachers consider themselves as super-beings. Most of them think that the class they teach is a must - you will never succeed in life without their precious advices. And since they have the power to fail you, they can subtly force you do stuff you normally don't need to do. Like, in Romania, it's common use for a University Teacher to force you to buy his book (or, you won't pass the exam) - and most such books, just between you and me, are crap.
In Romania (and it seems quite often abroad as well), attending courses is obligatory. That is plain stupid, to say the least. What if I can learn by myself? What if I have something better to do? Give me a fair exam at the end of the semester, and be objective. How I study your courses - that's my problem. Why do you have to force me attend your courses? Holy Teacher, is this the best you can do?
But the cherry on the top - if you fail an exam, you need to take it again and again until you pass it (and sometimes you need to re-take the courses over and over). To this, I have a simple question: "Why?"
Why do You have to decide for me if a class is important to me? Just to show me that I'm small and you're BIG. So that You'll show me who's the authority... We all know we need to respect authority. We all know we need to respect Teachers.
Well, not me - I don't respect teachers - just because they're teachers. You, as teacher, need to earn my respect - I don't respect you by default.
Getting back to the problem at hand - why can't the school let you graduate with some exams failed? Fine, I failed some exams - I don't care - it's most likely classes I never cared, nor will ever care about. At the end of the school, just give me a diploma, and write my grades on it - if anybody want's to know, they'll check that. It's my interest we're talking about - if I fail an exam I care about, I'll feel ashamed, and take that course again because I want to.
School - as is right now, is obsolete - and I'm not talking about Romania here. Instead of forcing you to obey (which is what schools do now), they should show you free will. It's very hard to have free will if all your life you've been taught to obey.
Just think about it, when for your work, you attend a one-week course, those teachers are really amazing and they do everything in their power to make you understand. And at the end of the course, You give a grade to your teacher. That's how it should be.
Because, if we come to think of school as a business,
- the teachers are the employees
- the students are the customers
- and the customer is always right
If you're a teacher, remember
- you're not a super-being, and
- not all the students care about your class - this is ok, those that really care, will actually learn/be interested about your class
- failing students will not help them
- if you truly care about what you teach, make sure your classes are interactive, and that you actually care about what your students have to say
- you don't need to respect a teacher just because he's a teacher
- focus on the classes that you care about
- you can learn a lot by yourself from books - often better than what teachers teach
- university (lowercase "u") is not the holy grail - don't let teachers interfere with your education...