Still, the question is, whose purpose? The states? The parents? Corporate? Or the student's purposes? The purpose of each is completely different. One common thread in all of them, though, is to share the collective knowledge of all those who came and who learned before. Without learning, put two groups of infants on deserted islands. Provide for them silently until they are older and even teach them to find their own food as a kick-starter. Then abandon them. Oh, and leave or teach them how to reproduce so they can continue their species on their islands. Then sit back and see how many thousands of years it takes to invent the wheel. In America, they never did invent it. Same thing in Europe. But in ancient Iran, they did. It's often said these days that there's no such thing as new, original, computer programming; everything is learned or copied from Google searches these days. If I had to learn to program from scratch today, it would be impossible. The knowledge I have is a set of knowledge created by thousands and thousands of men (and women) over nearly a hundred years (thousands of years when you consider the underlying science and mathematics). I can use all of that knowledge but if I had to learn it without education that would be impossible; there are too many lifetimes of collective knowledge in what I know now. That is the purpose of education, simply to collect, share, and pass on, the learning and wisdom of those who came and learned before us.