Who Should Be Responsible for Academic Achievement?

The question for this essay was “Who should be responsible for a students academic achievement; the student, their parents, the school or the government? Why?” This is a difficult question for me because I think that all of them play an important part in helping a child excel. In English we say, “It takes a village to raise a child.” This saying means that all of society is responsible for raising a child.

In general I think the parents have the greatest responsibility for their children’s education, teachers the second most, the government third most and the student the least.

One important thing, which I think is overlooked, in education is how we measure achievement. Education systems often make a “one size fits all” system for education where everybody does the same activities and is scored in the same way. This approach works for basic skills but does not work as well for more advanced skills. Schools need to do more to look into children’s aptitudes and interests and help them gain skills that will help them succeed in life.

The school and government should be responsible for insuring that there is a good curriculum, that schools are well funded and that all schools give students a chance to succeed. In addition I think the government needs to make sure that students have a good home life. Usually things like food and shelter are the responsibility of the parents. But it is important that the government identifies students who are not getting food and shelter when they need it and the government should help them.

Teachers also have a very important role to play. Although the government and schools can make rules it is the teachers that actually educate the children. They know the children and can directly identify each child’s aptitudes and help them to excel at them. The government is responsible for finding good teachers but the teachers are the ones that actually do the work.

However, parents are the most important factor for two reasons. First, the most successful students usually have a lot of help outside of school. Their parents will help them study but good parents will also help their children learn through extracurricular activities. More importantly, parents are responsible for providing the basic environment for the child. The parents must provide for basic needs such as food, shelter and safety. If parents don’t provide for the child’s basic needs the child cannot succeed in school.

I think that children are the least responsible for their academic achievement. Children are changeable and easily affected by their environment. If children are given the right environment they will be able to identify their aptitudes and improve them so that they can find the right path in life. Certainly there are some exceptions where a child has a good environment and turns out bad or a child has a bad environment but manages to excel in academics despite their situation. However, those situations are rare.

Overall, I think that everybody has a responsibility for making sure that children are well educated. I think education is one of the most important factors for having a successful society so everybody in society should help children get a good education.



excel (v) – to be very good at something
overlook (v) – to not notice or consider something
aptitude (n) – a natural skill or an ability to do something well
curriculum (n) – the courses that are taught by a school, college, etc.
shelter (n) – a place that protects you from bad weather or danger
extracurricular (adj.) – describes an activity or subject that is not part of the usual school or college course