This is a kind of tricky subject for me for a few reasons.  As a parent, I absolutely believe that a good education is extremely important.  But what, exactly, does that MEAN?  Does the school system that my children are enrolled in provide that education?  Well, in part, yes it does.  But I firmly believe that a HUGE part of their education comes from their environment outside school – their home life, extended familly, friends and extra-curricular activities.

Do I think it will be best for both of my girls to go to college and get a degree?  I’m not really sure, frankly.  I mean, part of what’s held me back “professionally” has been the fact that I don’t have that little slip of paper that indicates that I graduated from an institute of higher learning.  On the other hand, I know plenty of people who DO have such a piece of paper (more than one piece of paper, in many instances) that isn’t doing them a lick of good.  I think, in large part, it depends a LOT on what you want to DO with your life once you’re out of college…

I was not what one might call a “good” student.  I didn’t do especially well in school, although I certainly had the intelligence to do well if I were so inclined.  My father gave me a wonderful opportunity to attend college on his dime, and I essentially blew that off for the 18 months that I did attend the Major University located in my hometown.  I do believe our parting of the ways was entirely mutual – I’m not sure I could have pulled my GPA up to something approximating “acceptable” in a reasonabl timeframe.  Looking back, I don’t regret NOT getting my degree in Music Education, but I do sort of wish I had a B.A. or a B.S. in *something*.

Once I quit the hallowed halls of the University, I made a couple of half-hearted attempts at the Community College level, but I didn’t really fare much better in that arena – even with my OWN MONEY at stake.  I do enjoy learning new things, but not really on someone elses schedule, I guess…

So do I think formal education is important?  To a certain degree, yes, I do.  An informal education is equally important, though, in my opinion.  It’s important for us to at least understand basic social conventions such as manners and etiquette (even if we opt later in life to completely ignore those same conventions for whatever reasons seem appropriate and logical to us).  It’s important for us to figure out just if, where, how and why we fit (or don’t) into the various social structures we are presented with in our daily lives (family interactions at holidays, our social groups at school, co-workers, neighbors, etc).

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