I think the worst outcomes of our public schools today is that they are teaching students how to test well, but not much beyond that. Teaching only towards the tests in addition to teaching them only how to take tests, does not make for a good employee anywhere (unless there is someplace in which one can get paid for taking tests.) The drive to “keep up with Jones’ ” (i.e. other countries with higher test scores) is keeping our children from learning how to LEARN. If teachers (and parents) do not encourage their children to learn in other ways (seeking out books/resources on subjects they enjoy, observing nature, etc.) then we are doomed, in my opinion. Creativity as well as creative thinking is going out the window in favor of improving STEM scores. I have my son in an “alternative” public school that emphasis self-directed learning, but I fear that increasing pressure on test scores through legislation (not to mention budget cuts) will impact him far worse than they did when I was young.
Much to think on and much to improve.