We are born weak, we need strength; we are born totally unprovided, we need aid; we are born stupid, we need judgment. Everything we do not have at our birth and which we need when we are grown is given us by education.[Tout ce que nous n’avons pas à notre naissance, et dont nous avons besoin étant grands, nous est donné par l’éducation.]
More important than the curriculum is the question of the methods of teaching and the spirit in which the teaching is given.
I suppose there is no place in the world where snobbery is quite so ever-present or where it is cultivated in such refined and subtle forms as in an English public school. Here at least one cannot say that English ‘education’ fails to do its job. You forget your Latin and Greek within a few months of leaving school – I studied Greek for eight or ten years, and now, at thirty-three, I cannot even repeat the Greek alphabet – but your snobbishness, unless you persistently root it out like the bindweed it is, sticks by you till your grave.
Why should society feel responsible only for the education of children, and not for the education of all adults of every age?
When I am king, they shall not have bread and shelter only, but also teachings out of books; for a full belly is little worth where the mind is starved, and the heart.
We are faced with the paradoxical fact that education has become one of the chief obstacles to intelligence and freedom of thought.