Business/Education Disconnect LO6441

Barry Mallis (
5 Apr 1996 08:34:48 -0500

Replying to LO6381 --

Reply to: Fixing the Business/Education Disconnect

Hal Popplewell's note (LO6381: Should education serve business?) prompts
these further thoughts.

Two weeks ago two local high school teachers arrived at my company plant
where 700 people work. I arranged two full days of interviews between
these two--a business teacher and an English teacher--and employees from
all "walks of life" to discuss how a knowledge of good English is crucial
in real life.

The teachers met with people from technical service, customer service,
marketing, engineering, executive offices, shop floor assembly areas,
finance and HR. Their goal--and ours--is to generate a curriculum for a
new high school course next fall entitled "English, Inc." Most all the
employees here, most of whom are parents of school children, too, offered
to speak to the class next fall.

The teachers walked away really pumped. Employees here were excited to be
able to share their thoughts on how important English syntax, usage,
grammar and language interpretation are to a working adult.

It's these kinds of programs which reconnect organizations with education.
Those stereotypical inhibitions which teachers feel about losing face
before the monolith of business acumen crumble; those cliche fears which
employees have about invading the sacrosanct precincts of the classroom
are shattered.

These are small, incremental ways in which we can bring business and
"society" closer together. I have much more to type about this,
especially in the area of team work, so crucial in many or most business
organizations, so avoided in our mid-years of education.

Best regards,

Barry Mallis
MARKEM Corporation

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