Writing in USA Today, Glenn Reynolds, the Instapundit, sounds a call for alternative education:

School was practice for working in the factory. Thus, the traditional public school: like a factory, it runs by the bell. Like machines in a factory, desks and students are lined up in orderly rows. When shifts (classes) change, the bell rings again, and students go on to the next class. And within each class, the subjects are the same, the assignments are the same, and the examinations are the same, regardless of the characteristics of individual students.

This had its advantages back during the Industrial Revolution, an assembly-line era where uniformity was more important than anything else, when Henry Ford was happy to sell you a car in any color you wanted, so long as it was black. But this is the 21st century, and now times have changed. You can buy a thousand different kinds of shampoo, so why should your kid have only one kind of education?

Read the whole thing.

And check out his new book The New School: How the Information Age Will Save American Education from Itself. I don't fully agree with his arguments in The New School, but nobody has been more persistent and perceptive in calling attention to the higher-education bubble. Totally worth a read.

Reynolds and I - along with a half-dozen other folks - discussed "Where Higher Education Went Wrong" last February in Reason. Read that here.