There is much debate in this country about education reform in the public school system. Discussions range from cost analyses, to teacher tenure and on-line services; in short, issues that address the “system.” There are many wonderful organizations and talented people devoted to improving the system and I salute them.
But I have a different thought about education and “systems.” Systems produce products. If students were “products” of an education system, then focusing on “system reform” would be entirely rational. But to view students as products is to neglect the essential nature of what they are; first and foremost, they are “consumers” — consumers of education.