Bare with me here.
Plants don’t invest in their children at all after they are born. One common practice among plant parents is to let newborns fly off in the breeze and literally end up wherever the wind may take them. It’s basically the same unfortunate situation for the huge majority of insects, lizards, and dinosaurs: after birth you are on your own. Luckily for us, new competition in the animal kingdom changed this equation.
The Evolution of Education: A good mother is hard to find
There are roughly 4000 species of mammal that scrape by in an amazingly wide range of climates, from Antarctic penguins to desert camels and cave bats. Backed by the mammary glands of our female halves built to feed newborn children, mammals prospered by investing in children after they were born and as they grew into adulthood, giving mammals the edge we needed¹ to out-compete our closest rivals: those son of a bitch lizards.
Among mammals too, a similar trend emerges. From bears, to elephants, to the majestic blue whale, the biggest mammals share a particular fondness for investing in their children’s future. Buffalo guide their children through the best paths. Lions spend years teaching their children to hunt. Jane Goodall discovered wild chimpanzees make their own tools to catch insects and pass the knowledge of how to do so down from one generation to another, educating their youth about their ancient relatives’ discoveries.
In conclusion, to be a successful species, successful parents, and to honor tradition, we should invest heavily in education of children. On second thought, this is not to say that mammals have found the only winning strategy. After all, there are still a lot of bacteria in the world despite the fact that they rarely train their children in the STEM sciences. If I were to pick a strategy for the country however, I think I will stick to the strategy of the lions: invest your resources in the education the young.
The Evolution of Education Sources:
¹Evolution of lactation:s Nutrition v. protection with special reference to ﬁve mammalian species by Holly L. McClellan, Susan J. Miller, and Peter E. Hartmann: Nutrition Research Reviews (2008), 21, 97–116 at doi:10.1017/S0954422408100749