Oh, Hogwarts. Remember the first time you read a Harry Potter book? It was so magical learning about the secret world of wizards and the wonder of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Every book, every chapter revealed more giddy details about the enchanted and haunted castle. How we all wanted to go to school there! Explore secret tunnels and moving staircases, chill in the common room and learn awesome magic skills.
We really needed to have our heads examined. You’d have to be a healthy combination of idiotic, deranged and suicidal to enroll in Hogwarts. Here’s tell reasons why…
10. Your education provide no real-world use.
Here’s the thing about education at Hogwarts – it’s very, very specific. Imagine going to high school and all the lessons who receive are just variations on arts and craft. Fun, yes. Practical, no. This will only set you up for a very narrow range of career options. What if you don’t want to live the rest of your life working as a wizard but want to be a lawyer, accountant, film maker – pretty much anything that doesn’t involve magic. Hell, some of the jobs wizards have in the series do require skills beside magic yet Hogwarts will only teach you the magical side of things.
9. Your education will be incomplete.
Let me remind you of a little moment from the conclusion of ‘Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets’. Harry has saved the day, Hagrid’s name has been cleared and all the frozen students have been unfrozen. Everyone is happy and they celebrate with a big feast during which Dumbledore makes an announcement: the exams will be cancelled. Wait, what? This is a school! You’ve spent the whole year teaching these kids magic skills even when a giant snake is roaming the halls, but now they’re not getting assessed has a celebration? The amount of time classes get dropped, skipped or cancelled during the year means that no-one is finishing their curriculum.
8. The teachers are deranged and clearly unchecked.
When a person in the real world becomes a teacher they have to undergo crazy amounts of background checks that get repeated year after year. There are strict guidelines and qualifications between a person going from being a civilian to a teacher. At Hogwarts you just need to turn up at the start of the year. Given the abilities of the headmaster, a quick bit of psychic investigation would uncover all manner of crazy. Such as an escaped murderer taking the place of your new defense of the dark arts teacher. Or your highly celebrated famous new teacher being a fraud. Then there are the ones who a dangerous or frauds and they let them stay on anyway – Professor Lupin, Professor Trelawny…
7. Bullying between students and teachers is rampant and unpunished.
Every school and every workplace encounters bullying at some point. It’s just a sad fact of human nature. It’s also something that needs to be addressed. In Hogwarts the bullying is rampant and nothing gets done to stop it. It not only happens between the students either. Professor Snape frequently bullies both Harry and Hermione without being pulled into line. McGonnagall bad-mouths other teachers in front of her class. Luna in particular is bullied by half the school, who steal and hide her things leaving her without them until the end of the year. She gets this treatment all year without intervention. What a crappy thing to leave unchecked.
6. Natural talent is the deciding factor between grades.
You have a natural talent for spells? Have an ‘A’. Less talented? Have a ‘C’. Lacking in talent altogether? Get shunned by society. What kind of education system is this? It doesn’t matter how much study you do, no matter how much you try, unless you’re born with a gift for spell casting then forget about achieving well at school.
5. It promotes segregation.
The first thing that happens when you arrive at Hogwarts is the Sorting. You put on a magical hat and get arranged into one of four houses. You will now eat with your house, live in your house, attend classes with your house, compete alongside your house and spent your free time with your house. You want to hang out with someone from another house, unlucky. Their common room is hidden and protected by a password. The staff will encourage you to fiercely compete against other houses, and they aren’t above taking sides. Even Dumbledore pulls a massive dick move at the end of the first book by allowing Slytherin to believe that they’d won the House Cup until pulling the rug out from under their feet at the last second and giving it to his favourite house.
4. It turns you into a minority with no voice.
As already stated, attending Hogwarts only sets you up for a career in the wizarding world. Let’s look at the facts – the wizard population is very small, small enough that eugenics is a topic of debate. There is, for all intents and purposes, no cross-over between the civilian world and the wizard populations. They have their own legal system, government, education…and yet they exist among the greater human population. Once you enter this world you’re becoming part of a minority group who are not recognized by the rest of the world. Good luck if you ever need something from any human system when you’ve been off the grid your entire life.
3. The punishments are completely insane.
Putting aside Professor Umbridge’s nasty quill – she was working outside of the school’s usual method of bat-shit crazy punishments. It seems that having standard set of detentions and what not are to simple and effective for Hogwarts and it’s left up to the teacher to come up with their own punishments (and remember what we said about them being deranged). Forcing a student to do secretarial work for you is one thing, but forcing them to go hunting in a forest which they’ve been threatened against for something dangerous to kill unicorns is something else altogether.
2. You run the risk of severe emotional trauma on a daily basis.
Hogwarts is not only the seat of learning in the world of wizards, but the home to many youths for the majority of the year for seven years. In the circumstances you’d want to ensure a safe, comfortable environment. They have a talented nurse who can regrow bones and mend wounds in a flash, but that does nothing to help them deal with the emotional and psychological harm they endure. You’re friends get murdered, your teachers predict your death, you accidentally get turned into all manner of animals and household objects, you spend half the year paralyzed, you get attacked by any number of horrific creatures, headless and blood splattered ghosts…the list of potential, mind-breaking occurrences is endless. Could be worse though…
1. You’ll most likely die.
…you may not get out alive. Even when you don’t factor in the all-powerful, completely evil noseless lunatic who is determined to level the place it’s still a high risk education. The grounds have a forest which is crawling with all manner of death dealing monsters, some of who are kept in the castle. Giant snakes, spiders and three headed dogs are all brought in by students and teachers alike and there’s even a tree who will beat the shit out of you. Students dying is not an uncommon occurrence and many of the dangers are ones that have no place being there in the first place.