Sunday, September 15, 2013

One Size Does Not Fit All

I am so tired of this “college for everyone” mentality in the US.  College is not for everyone. It’s a fallacy that all children can learn and be on a certain level in the same amount of time. We have now screwed up an entire generation of kids with this ridiculous notion. There are so many young people who were pushed toward college, took loans and now are in huge debt, who probably were not even “college material”. As you know you can’t tell the bank, “Well I never finished college, so I don’t actually need that student loan. Thanks anyway, but I won’t be paying it back.” I don’t say that to be mean. When we used to provide vocational education/training in high schools kids could graduate and be college or work ready based on the courses they chose to take. Now, its college and career ready, which still means college, because as we know vocational training is gone from most regular schools. I have news for you Arne Duncan. Many kids should not be sent off to college, based on loans they can’t repay, to train for jobs that are becoming obsolete. This attitude that everyone must be prepared to go college is bad. Don't we need skilled trades people?  
 I say we stop changing the education system every year or two, and try something long enough to see if it works. Common Core has some serious issues, and I am afraid the disaster that is Secondary Education in America is about to get a whole lot worse.  No one asked my opinion, but if they did I would say this: Start with a vocational/trade focus in regular high schools. The middle and top students are going to go college anyway. We don’t really have to worry about them. It’s the rest of the kids we need to catch before they fall through the cracks. Sure its all about rigor, but why can’t the rigor be in a subject that will be useful for a middle class person working in a trade that allows them to live a comfortable life and support themselves?    Rant complete, that is all!

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