When schools try to minimize competition, middle- and upper-middle-class parents seek pay-for-play opportunities for their children, writes Hilary Levey, a Harvard health policy scholar, on Education Next. Competition is less common only for children whose parents can’t afford the participation fees.
Not only is there growing inequality associated with afterschool competition, but increasingly younger and younger students are diving into competitive tournaments on sports fields, in dance and music studios, and in other venues, such as academic bees. . . . Formal competition, tryouts, and practices are part of the everyday grind, as ever-increasing numbers of American children are being raised to play to win both inside and outside of the classroom.
We don’t know if early competition is good or bad for children, Levey writes.
Competition doesn’t enhance performance; it encourages cheating, concludes a British study. Poor performers make the most creative cheaters. Via Core Knowledge Blog.