There are many, many more good ideas about what to do about the new R’s. What about Edison schools? Saving school dropouts (30% will leave without graduating from high school, and many from this group will earn less than $20,000/year, or become criminals)? I just scratched the surface.
Finally, we should not dismiss cognitive factors, that is, IQ, for you need some smarts to just get into college or graduate school. IQ could be almost half determined by your environment, like school. Thus, basic knowledge helps, and reading, writing and arithmetic are important. But they are not enough. Once in the work place, your EI will better determine your success in life, and, hopefully, make you a more responsible citizen of the world.
Relationship more or less covers all added R’s, and these key parameters CAN BE TAUGHT AND LEARNED. Are our schools adequately covering the 4 R’s? A simple, loud, no. Yes, of course there are pioneers and steeples of excellence, as indicated above. Plus, there are dedicated teachers and administrators doing their best. I can only express my admiration for their devotion and commitment. But they are the exception.
This, then, is a potential area for pursuit by someone wanting to become famous in education. The world seeks the next Ben Franklin or Horace Mann or John Dewey or Martin Luther to galvanize that critical change. Maybe, even, you might be that individual to initiate the first step to make that crucial difference.