I talked to an acquaintance of mine who (a bit late in the game) was astounded that their teenaged nieces didn't know Japan was an ISLAND. (Actually Japan is a group of islands: four main islands and over 3000 small ones, but I wasn't going to argue.)
When my acquaintance queried their sister as to why they didn't know that geographcial factoid...the sister said, "It's not on the test." My acquaintance was dumb-founded (which surprised me).
I said, "Where have you been? It's all about taking tests, not learning anything or even HOW to learn. That'a No Child Left Behind." The Acquaintance got a bit defensive, "I don't have kids, why would I know that?"
"Um, cuz they are The Future? Uh, this whole thing has been in the news and TV and all that>..."
I'm glad to know I know kids who actually can think and research and LEARN stuff!
What blew my mind is that my acquaintance didn't know that way too many kids know NOTHING except what's on the tests. I thought I was the original Ostrich Head!
I won't even go into the other part where the sister told her 14 year old to do something and the kid said, "No!" and nothing was done. Another story for another day, (insert a chuckle).