Generation Z and the Failure of Education: Return to School I

Returning to School

by Owen Fourie

Changes for the Better

Perhaps you are also sensing it. There are huge changes coming—changes that will affect your education, your life, and the world. It is the end of the world, isn’t it?

It might seem a tad dramatic to look at the events of the first eleven or twelve years of the 21st Century and regard them as signs of the end of the world, but few are unaffected by what is happening.

The earthquakes, the tsunamis, the unusual weather, the overturning of old ways, the political turmoil, and the tottering world economy seem to be indicators of what some call “the turning of the ages.”

Religions, New Agers, astrologers, and shamans are proclaiming change.

Many Christians believe that it points to an imminent return of Christ. Others, following the predictions of an elderly American Christian radio personality, have waited for “the Rapture,” only to be disillusioned by a non-event.

Some refer to the anticipated change as “the Shift” and say that it is something that happens every 26,000 years or so. Much is made of the ancient Mayan Calendar and the significance of the winter solstice (in the northern hemisphere) on December 21, 2012.

Regardless of agreement or disagreement with any of these beliefs, it is evident that there exists a widespread consciousness of some change that is about to occur.

It is evident, too, that as you return to school for another year, the change that you are sensing is more than the change from your personal world of freedom to the tedium of structured learning.

Generation Z

If you were born in the 1990s, you are of Generation Z—a digital native—completely at home with the electronic technology of your time. Those who were born in the early 2000s also qualify for Generation Z status.

Apparently, you may be able to identify with some of the following characteristics. Please understand, though, that several of these points lack “authoritative” verification. You are described as

  • being impatient and instant- or now-minded;
  • lacking the ambition that motivated earlier generations;
  • being dependent on technology;
  • having a short attention span;
  • having A.D.D. – Attention Deficit Disorder (a myth);
  • being consumer oriented;
  • having a consciousness of other dimensions;
  • being multidimensional in outlook;
  • knowing that the visible you is only a part of who you really are;
  • experiencing the activation of your entire DNA;
  • exercising whole-brain thinking;
  • being bored with the limitations of third-dimensional thinking;
  • being more advanced (albeit less mature) than your teachers;
  • experiencing difficulty with your schooling;
  • being a generation that is labeled unfairly as “problem children.”

The failure of education

In recent years, as I have enjoyed the privilege of interacting with Generation Z in the classroom, I have observed some of these characteristics. Trying to teach this generation is an enormous challenge.

One thing is clear: most education systems are outdated. In their current form and requirements, they are inadequate. The classroom will become even more frustrating for many teachers. There are better ways of educating this generation; however, to be successful, education needs to be set free from the control of education establishments and government departments.

The exorbitant cost of education

In May 2011, we learned that student loans for tertiary education in America had exceeded the nation’s credit card debt!

Learning was intended to lead to freedom, not financial servitude. The cost of education also speaks of the need for change.

Coping with education today and preparing for what’s coming

Frustration with the chains and shackles of institutionalized education is not new. Many have expressed this over the years, and it is worth noting some quotes by famous people. This is what we’ll do in the following two posts.

This article began with a consideration of changes that might be coming. How quickly will these changes come? Perhaps we may expect not a sudden and dramatic upheaval but rather a growing and increasingly influential alternative to the present system.

Perhaps the existing system will still be with us for a long time and many will have to work within it. In the articles following the quotations posts, I propose to deal with these points:

  • Being a prepared student: coping with education as it is today and as it might be for a good while;
  • Being a pioneering student: slipping out of the imposed educational straitjacket and being who and what you really are;
  • Developing study skills to cope with the education system as it is now and to progress beyond its limitations.


If you can identify with the issues addressed in this post, your comments, observations, and questions would be most welcome.

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Understanding Our Future

Kingsley L. Dennis “The Phoenix Generation: A New Era of Connection, Compassion, and Consciousness” According to futurist and sociologist, Kingsley L. Dennis, humanity is entering a momentous phase in its history. Being born today is a generation of children that will radically reinvent human society, moving our culture from competition, control, and censorship toward connection, communication, and compassion.

The Future Happens Through Us – an interview with Kingsley L. Dennis Kingsley L. Dennis speaks with Joanna Harcourt-Smith about: “the phoenix generation”; a radical shamanizing of the human species; the global classroom; the new connectivity and the developing countries; the shift towards new values; instinctual gnosis; DNA and the light field of the body; becoming soulful agents of change.