There aren’t enough jobs around right now, and yet the New York Times tells us The Powers That Be intend to turf young job-seekers into the marketplace sooner and make the old people keep working menial jobs later. Tough times!
First, there is the ‘New Plan to Let High Schoolers Graduate 2 Years Early’:
Dozens of public high schools in eight states will introduce a program next year allowing 10th graders who pass a battery of tests to get a diploma two years early and immediately enroll in community college.
Students who pass but aspire to attend a selective college may continue with college preparatory courses in their junior and senior years, organizers of the new effort said. Students who fail the 10th-grade tests, known as board exams, can try again at the end of their 11th and 12th grades. The tests would cover not only English and math but also subjects like science and history.
The new system of high school coursework with the accompanying board examinations is modeled largely on systems in high-performing nations including Denmark, England, Finland, France and Singapore.
The program is being organized by the National Center on Education and the Economy, and its goals include insuring that students have mastered a set of basic requirements and reducing the numbers of high school graduates who need remedial courses when they enroll in college. More than a million college freshmen across America must take remedial courses each year, and many drop out before getting a degree.
On the one hand, this sounds a bit like reverting to the pre-1950s norm, where a high school degree meant you were literate enough to take a serious job and be worth paying wages. And there’s certainly plenty of wasted time in the average high school curriculum. On the other hand, modern Americans seem to have lost all interest in belonging to a “high-performing nation”, and this could easily be read as enshrining a two-tier caste system where the upper income classes nurse their golden offspring through extra years of college prep, while the rest of us proles are left competing for whatever service jobs can’t be offshored or handled more cheaply by robots. So — like today, only more?
Then, at the other end of one’s working life, Retirees Trade Work for Rent at Cash-Poor Parks:
An itinerant, footloose army of available and willing retirees in their 60s and 70s is marching through the American outback, looking to stretch retirement dollars by volunteering to work in parks, campgrounds and wildlife sanctuaries, usually in exchange for camping space.
Park and wildlife agencies say that retired volunteers have in turn become all the more crucial as budget cuts and new demands have made it harder to keep parks open.
Work-campers come together in one place — leading nature walks or staffing visitor centers, typically working 20 hours to 30 hours a week — then take off to their next assignments. As they move about, they keep in touch with one another through cellphone numbers, e-mail addresses and Facebook postings, creating virtual communities filled with the people they meet.
This may be my personal aspiring agoraphobe, but it reads less like Travels with Charley and more like Grapes of Wrath. Or at least the Civilian Conservation Corps. But with cellphones and Facebook, Megan McArdle would assure us! Which is just as well, because we won’t have the Post Office to deliver hard copy to our no-longer-existent SROs, freeing up valuable urban condo spaces for young glibertarian hipsters like Megan McArdle!
I’m not sure what to make of this expiriment except that it feels quite like the British secondary system which meant I also thought immediately of The Specials’ Rat Race.
It’s a sucky song by them so here’s a better one: Concrete Jungle
Without the old-school 1950’s style outlet for Technical School grads into manufacturing jobs, it seems quixotic. Where exactly do the the track B students go?
This is why we have to get school prayer and the 10 commandments back into the classroom!
Well, the palin kids have to do something, especially after they get knocked-up.
I hate to sound defeated, but yes…
The Work-Camp thing doesn’t really concern me. We do as much “camping” as we can and have met many of these folks. Theirs is a unique lifestyle that they find quite satisfying that also happens to stretch the budgets of the parks where they stay.
Unfortunately, there is a sizeable – and growing – population of people in this country who find themselves living in RV’s out of necessity instead of desire. I am not aware of any hard numbers, but I have personally seen a tremendous increase in the number of people who are permanent residents of RV parks, living in campers that, quite often, are little better than drafty aluminum boxes. It certainly beats being “homeless,” but in many cases there is not a tremendous difference.
But, I am sure that it’s not a situation that couldn’t be cured with more tax cuts! You betcha.
I was actually pleased to see the minus-two years of high school plan. My friends from Germany have told me for years that the American school system doesn’t make any sense.
Sure, we need to re-energize our manufacturing sector (and while I’m at it, I’d like a pony) so that there are jobs for people who take the tech school track.
But it’s not like there are scads of good jobs waiting for all the newly-minted BA’s, either. So you go to tech school and don’t get an apprenticeship or well-paying blue-collar job right away. I still think you’re better off than having 4+ years of student loans to pay off.
I don’t know Anne Laurie; the current purpose of high school seems slanted more to just keeping kids incarcerated as long as possible rather than attempting to teach them, or god forbid inspire a love of learning. A reasonably high percent of smart kids drop out too, bored out of their gourds and anxious to get out in the world and start to work. When they get older and realize they need more education, they go back and get it. And a lot of kids are never going to be scholars but have talents that never get used in a school setting.
I think the European model has some possible improvements over our current model, and as you said, we already have a 2 tiered system. We just pretend we don’t, and offer nothing for those on the lower rung.
A Mom Anon
I know the howling from wingnuts would be deafening,but I truly do not understand why alot more money isn’t being spent in significant amounts to improve and restore the entire parks system. National and State. It would put alot of people to work,the parks need the help,so how could that not be a win/win?
I got the Ken Burns National Park series on DVD for Christmas and one thing has struck me while watching it. If today’s wingnuts had been in office back at the beginning of the process to form the park system,there wouldn’t be one. There have been forces against the idea since day one,and there’s always been a fight to keep them. One of the things that made America different from the rest of the world was the setting aside of these places(other parts of the world followed suit after us),and yet not too many people seem to give a damn. What’s really striking is that a fair portion of the land set aside was donated by wealthy robber baron/bankster types(Rockefeller,etc). Can you imagine a Trump,Fuld,or any of the present day whiners doing the same?
The military, which will pick the best, and then educate them. The rest will devolve into a lumpenproletariat, speaking a patois. Maybe they will become sharecroppers. Some will take up rebellion and terrorism, some others will be recruited into death squads and form a lumpenbourgeoisie. After a couple generations the colonization and underdevelopment of the United States will be complete, and the corporations can install a theocratic monarchy without any fuss.
Ok, maybe I am extrapolating a bit too much here…
Two -tier? Huh, looks like it is just something some kids need – I have known of a number of kids that could have done this in my day and avoided one or two years of boring hell (the real issue for these kids is that they are required to sit in some course they already know just to get a ticket punched and that is just baby sitting. That seems rather unfair for these high performing kids.
Looks like a good opportunity for some kids to start college and follow what they really want without an extended waste of time. This should work for really fast burners who would be in the top 1% no matter what and as such, would not in any way affect any normal student who did the classic twelve year plan (or the person who needed an extra year of advanced math/science that is more accessible at the high school level.)
However, if this test is dumb down so the average tenth grade student can pass and the education level of all kids are made lower, than yes, this would be a true disaster and would create a two-class system. Yet that is not what has to happen if asshole parents stop trying to turn every kid into above average … don’t study, just lower the bar.
A Mom Anon
Alot of this is also about school districts saving money. I wouldn’t mind the 2 yr of HS thing if the education was high quality,but as the mom of a 10th grader,in our case at least,the education is bare bones at best. And I live in one of GA’s better county school districts. It’s frightening to me that my son will graduate with far less quality education than I did 30+ yrs ago.
@A Mom Anon:
they were donated in return for tax breaks. William Randolph Hearst did the same thing with San Simeon.
And the best the Senate can come up with is dicking around with the tax code. What a fucking waste.
Well, especially if you are working hard to limit the available supply of cheap illegal immigrant labor who do the poorly paid, no benefits, dirty and menial jobs, it only follows logically you need to insure a permanent and available underclass of lowest class workers.
After all, who wants to eat where the floors have not been mopped and the dishes not washed? Who wants to go in a public restroom that has not been cleaned?
And look at all the money saved for the companies hiring these workers? They are always paid bare minimum wage. They have no health care or other benefits. They are always guaranteed fewer than 40 hours a week, thus insuring no overtime and no triggering of federal wage and salary law.
This is all obviously very good for the company’s profits and bottom line, and puts more cash in the pockets of those at the top. Where it really matters.
I mean, really, America needs forward thinkers like this.
Graduate after grade 10 ? With what educational credentials ? C’mon, say it with me, Anne Laurie – MCAS. And its ilk across the nation.
Saw an article, recently, about a Utah legislator attempting to make grade 12 out in Utah optional; for the sake of the children, mind you (a.k.a. a cost savings). If we’re not educating them adequately, now, with a nominal 12 years of school, by what magical incantation is it believed we’ll suddenly do it better with only 10 (granted, with a little effort, you can go through the entire New Testament in a single school year, with discussions) ?
Either I’m gonna put emigration back on the table, or start considering shooting myself.
I am sure this has more to do with saving money than improving the system and I’d like to know if the community college will be free. I have friends who have some high achieving kids who take the advanced classes, take the appropriate tests but then the college refuses to accept them for credit because they want to make money off the kids taking the courses. The education for a physician in the UK is 6 yrs because they don’t waste 2 yrs taking english . humanities and social sciences. Becoming a dentist is 4 yrs because of the same reasons.
Just what this country needs : millions upon millions of 16 year olds with high school diplomas. At least they’ll be able to start thier career at the Brawndo Corporation sooner.
@A Mom Anon:
They already are. I’ve been a hiring manager for almost 20 years, and the average college-educated kid is less literate on a lot of levels than most class of ’73 high school grads. And our techie culture adds in an induced ADHD aspect (I’m in IT where we all have to multitask, and we all see our abilities to focus on a single thing impacted).
The kids today can google anything, but they aren’t being taught how to evaluate the quality of the information, probably the most important skill they’ll need for the rest of their lives.
This sounds pretty much like a GED, only you get to take it earlier.
A Mom Anon
@Mike Kay: You know,I’m not even adverse to the tax break for that because at least there’s something to show for it. All today’s tax breaks do is allow the wealthy to hoard more wealth. They don’t use that advantage to create anything but a pile of money for themselves without giving back a damned thing.
My impression (personal experience only) is that in some European countries this works out because there are good vocational schools. In the U.S., this role is generally left to the community college systems, which in most states are always strapped for cash (again, my impression). Unfortunately, there’s no free lunch here. A high school diploma isn’t really worth very much, just as a credential. If we let kids graduate after two years, we need to sink more resources into post-HS training schools, and that could be a hard sell.
I’ve encouraged my offspring to be veterinarians or hackers. Personal security forces might also be a good growth prospect for the young’uns, as there will likely be a resurgence of kidnappings in the future, with decimated police forces and ever-widening gaps between the haves and have-nots.
Meanwhile the kiddies can learn all about St Ronnie and the REAL intent of the American Revolution in the new Texas Christian Army Command handbooks.
I’d just like to point out that I was in a similar program over a dozen years ago, although it wasn’t as formalized (and not QUITE the same). This isn’t really a new thing. IIRC all the schools around here had the same program, but obviously class differences kind of limited ability to partake (anyone in the suburbs needed a car, and you needed money for tuition).
It’s frightening to me that my son will graduate with far less quality education than I did 30+ yrs ago
I don’t know, I think it has a lot do with where you live, and your home environment.
I live in Maryland, and Montgomery and Howard County schools are pretty good, easily as good as the schools in NJ I went to. The Northern Virginia schools also are good. I’m sure this is counterbalanced by the awful schools in much of the south, but when you pay teachers bubkus and underfund the schools, you get what you pay for.
Brick Oven Bill
Here is the Obama Administration’s understanding of the economy. These guys went to Harvard.
Perhaps, in light of this, and the fact that Obama truly cares about Americans, and wants us all working, we should end the importation of new workers through immigration until unemployment falls to 6%.
The Obama Administration assures us that this will be late next year.
So much cynicism & comedy in one reply – I’m simply overwhelmed. I haven’t laughed that hard since Mr. Show
I feel vaguely shameful that I’ve just laughed for the last ten minutes at your response.
Do the the Germans have a word for “shameful laughing?” SchadenLachkrämpfe or SchadenLachanfälle – something like that?
Here is the bestest bit:
Crikey Moses, “devolve” as the verb is inspired; “a lumpeproletariat” instead of “the lumpenproletarians” is astute, and “speaking a patois” is the sweet, sweet kicker.
Xenos, that was a stellar bit. My only suggestion would be to think about adding “only” before “a patois.”
@de stijl: (out of character) Consider it satire then. At a time when conventional liberals are denounced as sockialists and communists it can be useful and therapeutic to speak with an actual leftist voice. Most people here politely ignore me most of the time, and I try not to be too much of a troll. There used to be a lefty troll named Paddy McShae or something who I found to be pretty amusing. It may have been an early creation of Dougj.
In any case, I do think about 60% of what I wrote was correct. I don’t know which 60%, though.
(/out of character)
In the New Deal public works programs, the elderly were often hired as parks guides, museum docents, caretakers, etc. I know it’s leftie commie radical to look back as positive things our government did in the 1930s, but, there you go.
@Brick Oven Bill:
careful, Mitt went to Harvard, where he got an undergraduate degree, a MBA, and a law degree (yes, all three degrees at Harvard), and he’s the next nominee of your party.
Hell, Bill O’Reilly has a grad degree in goverment from….. wait for it… Harvard.
you are aware Scalia and Roberts are grads of dreaded Harvard.
Brick, if ya ever gonna have any credibility you have to be consistent, which means you have to bash the wingers and neo-cons who run your party who are almost all from ivy league schools.
btw, if one of palin’s kidz doesn’t get pregnant and drop out of high school and gets recruited by harvard, you think they’d turn it down.
Community college, after 10th grade! The track A students continue with high school until 12th grade, then go to private colleges.
It’s the track C, D, E (?), and F students that we don’t know where they’re going. Continuing in an ever discouraging lower, remedial, track while the college prep kids prep for college? Or do they just give up and drop out without either the high-school diploma or the opportunity to advance (?) to community college?
I don’t know. Maybe this is more thought out than I’m giving it credit for. But it does look more like a way to increase, rather decrease, the stratifications that are turning this country into a hellhole of class warfare.
@ A Mom Anon:
It’s frightening to me that my son will graduate with far less quality education than I did 30+ yrs ago.
And yet, here in NJ my kids are getting a *much* more thorough public school education than I did in the 70s in one of CT’s better public systems. And it completely blows away what my husband got at Sandy Springs (GA) back then. The idea public schools *in general* teach less than in the Good Olde Dayes is poppycock — the top tier of the public schools is teaching much more and much better.
But that top-tier public schooling is very expensive — not just in tax dollars, but in community commitment. And the only sports we’re good at are the low-cost ones, like track. How’s your school’s football team?
@A Mom Anon:
B-b-b-but … the deficit!
It seems to me we’re down to two classes: the very rich, and everyone else.
And warfare? We’ve been trained to believe we can’t criticize the rich because they create all the jobs for us ungrateful unwashed, so that leaves blaming minorities and Liberals.
Brick Oven Bill:
I know, it’s amazing, right? Even Harvard grads couldn’t predict how badly Bush & Cheney fucked the economy. It’s hard for smart people to think like evil morons!
Really good point, I wondered the same thing. It’s in there, though, even if it’s onlly a single sentence.
If I understand it, those who don’t pass the tests by 10th grade then know they’ll need remedial work in college, so they could do that remedial work in high school.
In other words, the 10th graders who pass are two years ahead, while the tenth graders who don’t are where they were in the existing system, except now they know it before they reach 12th grade, and then have to essentially repeat 11th and 12th grade in the community (or open enrollment) college, putting them 2 years behind.
I guess the key would be what they’re offering to the 11th and 12th graders who don’t pass. It could conceivably give them two years, too, and they wouldn’t have “failed at college”.
I like it, as an experimental program. But, it will depend on that group you mentioned.
That’s encouraging to hear. I don’t have kids, so I have no idea how the schools are performing outside of observing neighbors and family.
I will say the kids seem pretty damn ok in my little universe. They take their studies a lot more seriously than we did.
Perhaps you’re right. Perhaps we need a more accurately descriptive term than class warfare, something that better reflects its essentially one-sided, asymmetrical, nature.
Class-strafing? Class-neutron bombing?
On paper, this looks like a good idea. But then, so does the idea of education that takes a child all the way to the (admittedly arbitrary) age of majority.
When I read through the cite, something didn’t seem right to me. I don’t have first-hand experience with the other countries, but I lived in Finland for a year, and I never recalled meeting, or hearing of, anyone who actually left school at the age of 16. So I Googled the Finnish education system to find out what I was missing, and the fact is that very few students in Finland leave school at the first opportunity; the vast majority go on to complete what’s basically a baccalaureate (think high school diploma on steroids).
The reason this system works in Finland and the other countries cited is that these other countries make the whole idea of education a high priority in the first place. There are no competitions to see who can cut the most out of education-related budgets in those governments. Parents don’t dissuade their kids from aspiring to any school they want because they can’t afford the tuition. Schools are funded equitably, and educational standards are applied uniformly, nationwide. Students aren’t put at an advantage or disadvantage based on where they live or what school they go to.
My concern in initiating a system like this in the U.S. is that there isn’t a strong enough educational foundation in place to sustain it, which in turn will mean that it really will enforce the phenomenon of a permanent underclass. We can’t guarantee that even a college degree means shit in this country. How can we guarantee that a sophomore-level board exam will mean anything at all?
I agree that as long as education is underfunded the 2 year/boards option is risky, but anyone who thinks that time spent for 2 more years in high school now is offering way better outcomes must be living in Lake Woebegone.
Significant numbers of kids drop out now, not all of them dumb; significant numbers need remedial classes when they get to college; and many of those never finish college, their transcripts only showing remedial classes when they leave. We have no real options other than the military now for them and to pretend that keeping them 2 more years in a shitty system will magically offer more options isn’t realistic.
Currently colleges are spewing out scads of grads who can’t find jobs either, and will need some sort of training or continued education to become employed. But those kids also have huge debt to pay off.
Probably the most critical factor would be how much of the education is free or at least very affordable. If further education is really available, it probably wouldn’t matter which campus you went to to study. Unfortunately, post-secondary training and education are expensive at the present. If you cannot get somebody to pay the bills, you don’t get the education.
According to my crystal ball [a bit scratchy, I admit], the proposed shortened public education scheme could very well lead to the formation of a permanent lumpenproletariat class, by whatever name.
This is progress?
“We’ve all been raised on television to believe that one day we’d all be millionaires, and movie gods, and rock stars. But we won’t. And we’re slowly learning that fact. And we’re very, very pissed off.”
Probably the most astute Durdenism from Fight Club.
The schools where my kids go are top notch (suburb of Dallas). So far they have not been infected with the idiocy from our State Education Board.
I actually like the idea of the two tier plan. There is no reason to keep the kids around in school for another two years that have no interest in continuing their education.
I would actually do the reverse. Test the kids at the end of 10th grade. If they pass then they have the option of continuing to grades 11th and 12th. If they fail (or opt out of the test), they get a sheepskin and a pat on the back.
A Mom Anon
@Doctor Science: I have no clue about the school sports and how much cash is funnelled into that. We aren’t a sports oriented family and our support is directed more at clubs and non sporty stuff. What I do know is that Math is now impossible for me to help my son with because I simply have no earthly clue what the hell they are doing. Not everyone is going to have a good aptitude in mathmatics,and it’s really the only thing the admins and much of the faculty cares about. Which is great if your kid loves math,but what about the kid who loves literature,earth sciences and arts? I have no issue with math literacy,but there is a huge over focus on it here,to the detriment of other things.
I guess this is a per district thing,but my old high school (in metro Columbus OH)no longer teaches civics,barely teaches history and has cut arts,music and much of their science programs. When I went there one whole building was devoted to sciences. I have no doubt that many districts are doing a wonderful job educating their students,but just as many don’t.
The camping for rent is not a new concept. It has existed almost as longs as RV parks have existed.
I think it is a good idea that the state parks have actually implemented it.
Brick Oven Bill
In fairness to Harvard, where as an aside, if you are admitted, you pretty much graduate if you have good attendance and pay your tuition, Bush went to Yale.
So did John Kerry. But Bush got better grades.
I think if you look at a lot of South American economies of the 1970s and 1980s, minus the peasants and huge indigenous communities, that’s somewhat the social structure and economy our super-elites think they’re comfortable with us living with.
Brick Oven Bill:
And Obama graduated magna cum laude, while Bush got C’s.
And Kerry ran for president more than half-a-decade ago. Gettin’ a little old and senile there, BOB?
El Cid: Minus the peasants? You’re kidding yourself if you believe that the top percent in income think of the rest of us as anything but peasants.
Brick Oven Bill
I would much prefer to be current in my grade comparisons JGabriel, but Obama’s college records are sealed as a state secret in the name of transparency. By the way, El Cid is learning.
Here’s your teabag El Cid.
Perhaps I am being too charitable here, but this sounds like a way of both saving money but also giving people who have no desire to gain more education the option of getting started in something else sooner. I’m a big proponent of making sure that anyone who wants to go to college can, but it’s not for everyone. It’s better in the end for everyone involved if people who don’t want to be in college aren’t there.
There’s nothing wrong with a tow or even three teir track if all the teirs are quality programs. early entry into the community college syystem seems like a good way to get kids who don’t need to be in high school off ot a good start on their lives.
1. Such early entry into community college programs already exists as fast tracks for university-bound students. The students get their first two years of college during what would have been their high school years. In my community the program is called Running Start and it is an elite program.
2. What exactly is wrong with a non-college/academic training program? A good carpenter, electrician, plumber, building contractor, or auto mechanic can make a decent living. In fact a teenager would be better off with training in one of those fields than a BA in, say, English Literature. A student who can skip tow years of regular adademic study and spend those years prepping to get into an electirician’s apprentice program is getting a good start in life.
3.Not everybody wants to go to college. My community has an excellent vocational alternative to regular high school that turns kids who otherwise would be dropouts into employable citizens.
4. Success means doing what a person enjoys for the living standard they want. Success does not necessarily mean getting a college education and a high paying job. One of the happiest people I know is a self employed handiman. He’s also one of the smartest people I know.
I don’t think he finished high school at all.
5. An awful lot of kids graduate from high school with no marketable skills even if their academic skills are grade level and no money for post high school eduucation. Those kids would be much better off if they learned a trade while living at home during what would have been their junior and senior years.
@JGabriel: And like John Kerry, George W. Bush parlayed his mediocre Ivy League grades into a career of distinguished, principled, and conscientious public service…oh, wait.
I meant to say this earlier, but since you seem to agree with Anne Laurie, I can just as well say it to you. It’s supposedly very, very likely that an increasingly large number of white collar jobs will be offshored in the coming decades, so that the educated set will find themselves in a similar spot to blue collar workers. Then again, I’d say that after a certain point, blue collar workers may be in a better position, because there’s no so much manual labor that can be sent to another country, although that depends on exactly what happens to white collar workers.
Oh lord…. (Said the middle-aged vastly under-employed person).
I hate camping.
@A Mom Anon:
Because that would make too much sense, that’s why.
Besides that, why wouldn’t we want to plow money into every conceivable project that we have given the unemployment rate? With supposedly $2 trillion of infrastructure that needs upgrading, why are we waiting? Why aren’t we trying to institute a program of paring down parts of certain cities in places like Detroit which desperately need jobs? Is there virtually no economic case to be made for that?
Perhaps this is an extreme statement, but I seem to remember some well known econ blogger–Krugman or DeLong–saying that the deficits of the next few years are virtually meaningless in the long run. I’m not saying we need to blow $2 trillion each year, but really, we need to be spending more.
@Brick Oven Bill:
Years ago, I read a proposal from an education reformer who thought we should start educating kids two years earlier, i.e. 3 and 4 year old would start off in state-funded pre-K, and finish 2 years earlier. From there the main tracks would be vocational training, community college, regular college, or work. One of his points is that most kids, by age 16, actually do have some idea of where they want to go at that point, and they are stagnating their last two years of high school in an artificially prolonged adolescence. Anyway, I think it’s worth exploring on both ends of that spectrum, I particularly like the idea of starting kids in pre-K earlier. It wouldn’t have to be mandatory (at least in my state, kindergarten isn’t mandatory), but I bet there would be very widespread interest. It does seem to be a more European model, which has its advantages. What I don’t care for about the way many European countries approach education is that it seems to lock you in fairly early, as in certain tests you take at age 11 become very determinative. A British friend of mine was telling me that it’s really highly unusual to see what I guess we call “nontraditional students”, those older adults who return for college or graduate degrees, and that there isn’t really even an obvious path for returning to school later. I think it would be shame if we ended up embracing a model that more or less fixed you for life, and truly who is going to want to go back to college if the students are 16? So anyway, pluses and minuses and all that.
Nothing. The problem is that, in the absence of universal education through college and even grad school for anyone showing the aptitude and desire, a multi-track or multi-tier educational system will tend to separate students, and the opportunities they are offered, by economic class rather than ability.
Socially, maybe — I just meant it’s unlikely any number of us would actually turn to smallholder farming for sustenance and small market transactions. We’re just too lazy.
“Brick, if ya ever gonna have any credibility you have to be consistent,”
Hold on there, Bobalooey! BOB is a Man of The Right – he doesn’t gain credibility from consistency. In fact, quite the reverse. Remember, The Right are (if I may borrow a bit of Dr. Jonah Goldberg’s rationociationalityousness) the spiritual successors to the Party of Lenin. Reality is whatever they believe it to be at the moment, and is entirely ideologically-dependent. Consistency is the hallmark of the despised latte-sipping liberal elitists.
To add in a bit of on-topicality, I’m not sure that there is anything more than short-term thinking going on in this, but certainly having a lumpen-class to do the menial tasks (who wouldn’t cut into the profit margin by demanding wages and benefits) would be a great boon to the Engines of America.
@Brick Oven Bill:
Bush got an MBA from Harvard. That was his been thing when he ran for president in 2000, he sold himself as the first MBA president.
What’s wrong with you? Everyone knows that. Even if you didn’t all you had to do is use wiki. Dude, you need to step up your game, cuz right now, you’re giving the wingers a bad name.
Quick post without time to read the thread, but ….
I graduated from high school almost 50 years ago. I thought at least half of it was wasted time then, and the only change I can see over that span of time, looking at the kids and grandkids around me, is that nothing has gotten better in that department. I see the latter part of high school mainly as cheap mechanism to keep adolescents busy and off the streets until they are old enough to be legally responsible for their own behavior …. at which time most of them miraculously turn into real people all of a sudden.
In other words, once the basics of American history and government and Algebra are covered, the rest is babysitting and relatively cheap crowd control.
So the plan mentioned here sounds like a good idea to me. The only caveat I have, as a person who was 16 when he graduated from high school, is that kids at that age in our country are not that ready for the adult world of college and all that it means. I went off to college having no frickin idea on earth what I was getting into, socially or academically. But I could do a job and earn a crust, more or less.
Brick Oven Bill
Here again is Thomas Jefferson’s plan for allocating public education on the basis of Talent, rather than Wealth and Birth.
“And had another which I prepared been adopted by the legislature, our work would have been complete. It was a bill for the more general diffusion of learning. This proposed to divide every county into wards of five or six miles square, like your townships; to establish in each ward a free school for reading, writing, and common arithmetic; to provide for the annual selection of the best subjects from these schools, who might receive, at the public expense, a higher degree of education at a district school; and from these district schools to select a certain number of the most promising subjects, to be completed at a university, where all the useful sciences should be taught. Worth and genius would thus have been sought out from every condition of life, and completely prepared by education for defeating the competition of wealth and birth for public trusts.”
Jefferson’s is the correct plan. The power structure hates the thought, and fights it through affirmative action scholarships, and legacy scholarships.
Under Jefferson’s plan, Bush, Kerry, and Obama might be changing oil, if they could show up on time, and regularly.
Bob is lazy and often doesn’t do his best work. Which tells me that he is too comfortable in that middle class lifestyle of his, doesn’t have the drive, the fire to do his best.
When he is on, he can sling the racist and fascist ideology as well as anybody around here. He’s got the chops, but doesn’t really show them off like he once did.
@Brick Oven Bill:
Yes, you described what amounts to an educational oligarchy there, Bob. If we could just keep the niggers in the fields, right? Once you let them see Paris, how are you going to control them?
Your ideas are intriguing, but unfortunately, dated and sociopathic. The people who aren’t “geniuses” (as determined, I suppose, by standardized tests written by other geniuses) are disposable.
OT, but this is funny because it’s troooue, from today’s Cheers & Jeers @ GOS:
Ha! Freepers looking for ways to buy drugs from Canada or Mexico cause they’re too expensive here. Wonder if any of them will get a clue about our system.
It sure was a boon to the South a couple hundred years ago.
As Bob would point out, slavery is one helluva well tuned economic system, as long as you manage it properly.
Brick Oven Bill:
Bill, grow the fuck up. While I doubt that anyone makes it into Harvard Law strictly on the basis of affirmative action, NO ONE makes magna cum laude on that basis.
Your repeated assertions to the contrary are a smear that can only be explained by ignorance, stupidity, irrational hatred, racism, or opportunistic manipulation of racism for personal gain — which only differs from racism in its degree of cynicism.
when state college costs $50G a year in about 10 years, this non-college track will be the ONLY track available for about 90% of the population.
Your morning hawk(s).I’m thinking this is about protecting territory rather than mating. If he catches and eats her I will know. The other outcome would be considered a happy ending?
Brick Oven Bill
DonBelacquaDelPurgatorio is incorrect. Toqueville teaches us in his Democracy in America that slavery is an inefficient system, which was destined to end, not through the mechanism of morality, but through the mechanism of economics.
“Payment must equally be made in order to obtain the services of either class of men: the free workman receives his wages in money; the slave in education, in food, in care, and in clothing. The money which a master spends in the maintenance of his slaves goes gradually and in detail, so that it is scarcely perceived; the salary of the free workman is paid in a round sum and appears to enrich only him who receives it; but in the end the slave has cost more than the free servant, and his labor is less productive.”
Magna Cum Laude is not necessarily earned, JGabriel, it can be bestowed. We are unable to judge, as we are unable to see.
The Bob Song.
Dare I say that even many four-year college graduates come out with very poor reading and writing skills?
I went to university in Canada and New Zealand but now work in New York City, and am amazed how many university grads cannot compose an email with proper punctuation and spelling. I have even had co-workers send me their emails to correct. (One new graduate was about to send a global email that used texting language and had trouble understanding why this might reflect poorly on him!)
I keep hearing that American universities are the best in the world. This may be true when it comes to the professions and research, but far too many undergraduates are completing university with a poorer education than many Canadian, British and New Zealand students receive by the end of secondary school.
BoB sounds like most of the op-ed columnists right now who are furious with the Obama WH because he won’t fire his staff…….
“O would be changing oil if he could get to work on time.”
BoB could probably get a job at the WP, HP, FDL if he applied–pretty sure Hiatt would hire him to do hit jobs on Obama.
Too early for you be drinking already … or is it?
I sense that somebody has a real inferiority complex here, Bobster. There are self improvement books that can help you.
Ergo, Canadian Club and Canadian Bacon, the two greatest products of our neighbors to the north.
With those two things alone, you can make a meal.
My former son in law has a masters in education, taught learning disabled kids for 5 years, quit and became a plumber…makes over twice the money he did as a teacher!
One of the guys I grew up with dropped out of high school at 16. (that was the rule then, had to be 16 to quit!) When he was 21 he got a job with UPS as a driver, that happened in the late 60’s…think UPS would hire a high school drop out today?
Its almost immpossible to make a decent living today in jobs that not so long ago were considered good, solid, long term careers. My youngest daughter teaches school, she takes home 900 dollars every 2 weeks. My ex wife and I have been sending her money monthly since she graduated…she is seriously considering going into a retail management training program. What a waste of someone who loves to teach and is good at it!
@Mike Kay: IOKIYR
Good point. I recently became aware of the current tuition costs where I went to college, and it seemed way out of line.
I was able to Google up what I paid in the late 70’s, and IIRC found college costs had increased at around 3x the rate of inflation. Why? Where the heck is the money going?
Further, through childhood savings, state and federal grants and loans, and working at a minimum of part time all the way through college I was able to complete my degree with a relatively small amount of debt. Kids there days are graduating with a huge amount of debt.
In my more immature days, we used to call this “Maggie cums loudly”, and giggle for a minute straight.
That is all.
Hi–I made the shells with meat filling with cream cheese, mozzarella, and parmesan. The spouse liked it. I think it needs work, but the cream cheese was more palatable since he has an averson to cottage and ricotta.
@Brick Oven Bill: Magna cum laude is based on GPA. How exactly would that be “bestowed”. It’s based on your grades for your entire 4 years.
Have you ever taken a college class? Do you understand what “GPA” means? Here are the cum laude definitions for 2009 at Harvard.
On another topic, this is a lovely New York corruption story.
I dunno, Manhattan prices are pretty steep. He could have paid $177 for that bagel if it had lox on it.
@JGabriel: How do you know he graduated magna cum laude? I thought no one has seen his transcripts from high school, Occidental, Columbia or Harvard…..
Every time I see Brick Oven Bill start spewing his nonsense, I thank Cleek for the pie filter.
that is all.
I will be in chicago this weekend. I don’t think my BJ t-shirt will arrive in time, however.
We have something like this, called Early College Start. High school juniors and seniors can take up to two courses per semester at the community college (where I teach) while still enrolled in high school. It’s a dual enrollment option – they can also use the college courses to satisfy requirements for high school graduation.
Tuition is free if you are in the community college district, which includes five school districts in our area. Students do have to pay for textbooks, which are not cheap, but it’s a lower-cost way to get up to 8 college courses. Overall, these students make better grades and have a lower drop rate than our “regular” students.
I quite like the program. It seems to be attracting high achievers who want an extra challenge and a low cost way to get started on college. That said, I’m not sure about letting a large number of students quit high school and move entirely to community college. They tend to do fine academically, but the immaturity shows sometimes.
Since I teach academic courses, I see mostly students who are planning to transfer to 4-year colleges. But they can also take technical courses. Here’s a partial list.
As always, the devil will be in the details.
Only if it also had whitefish and capers.
@cat48: Good morning, Ma’am. I’m not a cheese expert by any means but there are sure to be some cheeses out there that would work as well or better as the usual. Fresh mozzarella comes immediately to mind, not the processed stuff, bit it’s hard to find out here in the sticks.
I’ll go along with that. For instance, I think US engineering schools are top notch at teaching engineering. But those students, many of whom I work with, tend to be pretty bad and writing and spelling. And don’t get me started at what it’s like to read the comments in code written by the Computer Science majors.
My undergrad degree was in physics. Can’t say I had a truly renaissance education (I never took a college-level history course for instance, much to my regret, nor did I ever study any English literature), but at least we were in the College of Arts and Sciences and had to take a certain number of liberal arts electives.
Germany came to my mind as well. We had German-immigrant friends in Baltimore. They told us that in Germany if you weren’t destined for college, you could apprentice in a trade. Their non-college-destined son wanted to be a carpenter, and they figured that vocational school would be the closest thing in the US. Poor kid was overwhelmed by the “vo-tech” environment. I think eventually he ended up doing an actual German apprenticeship in Germany.
I did something like that here in Florida when I was in high school in the early 90s. We just called it advanced placement, and I think a lot of other states have it, too. Basically, I took classes in high school and at the end of the year, took an AP test. How well you did on that test determined what type of college credit you received.
By the time I finished high school, I had racked up enough credits to skip my first year of college. I got credit for English, History, Biology, Government, Calculus and a bunch of other classes – about 32 credits in all.
This didn’t work quite in my favor, though. Graduating high school at 16 was hard enough, but starting college as a sophomore at 16 was ridiculous. Imagine the horror of my first college girlfriend in my second semester when she discovered I was only 17 and quite a bit younger than her!
Ordered my Tunch gear Sunday night, goodies arrived Wednesday. Great service from Cafe Press.
Most of what I was going to write on this question that you have written very well .
Our local community college is in partnership with many local businesses and our university. You get full credits for the two years when you apply to the university. For some it means 2 years you do not have to pay for student loans since some in accordance with their personal circumstances do get to go to the community college for free. This September 2 relatives will be going that route. One will be going for engineering and the other one will be going for landscape architecture. These are 2 difficult paths they have chosen. They know they need the extra preparedness for it’s no secret these are aspirations in which our children fail more so than the students from Asia and its not recent either.
I occasionally buy that and a chunk of parmesan at Whole Foods for a treat. My spouse doesn’t notice the difference. Very unsophisticated palate as well as picky eater–meat, potatoes, and a vegetable. That’s really what he wants each day, but once a week I force him to eat something different.
Fleas correct the era
So how much does college cost in high-performing nations including Denmark, England, Finland, France and Singapore?
* Denmark: “Higher education in Denmark is usually provided free of charge for all EU/EEA students and for students who are participating in an exhange programme. All other students have to pay a tuition fee. Annual tuition fees for full-time degree students range from 6,000 to 16,000 Euro.”
* England: “For 2009/10, the maximum is £3,225″
* Finland: ” Finnish schools and universities are free! Plus, you get a government allowance each month to live on while you’re a full time student.”
* France: “in the range of 300 Euros a year”
* Singapore (National University of S.): “At present, undergraduate education at NUS is highly subsidized by the Government of Singapore, which pays for the bulk of the operating costs besides the infrastructural costs. The University’s fees are reviewed and adjusted periodically to reflect the cost of providing education to students.”
Take it with the customary “it must be true, it’s on the Internet” salt … but still. If we want to emulate stuff, maybe we could emulate that, and not just have a get out of HS and into Fries With That two years earlier plan?
Pinnacle of progressive truth arrested.
Duke Lacrosse Stripper Jailed
Fleas correct the era
Well, hell, and maybe we could not emulate a tag for the quotes marks? I didn’t put that there, and I apologize for not clicking Preview first.
Each school system has it’s advantages and disadvantages. With the German system if you aren’t academically oriented by a young age, you go to vocational school. That’s great for those who really aren’t destined to be academic stars. But others who are late bloomers really miss out.
I’ve got a friend who was a C- student in high school, but when he went to college – an average state university – he just came alive academically and graduated with a 4.0. That got him into a good medical school where he did a combined MD/PhD program and graduated top of his class again. He now does cutting edge stem cell research in his field. If my friend had been German, he would have been shuffled into vocational school and that wouldn’t have benefited anyone.
So there are definitely problems with our system, but there are also people who benefit from things being less rigidly defined at an early age.
Oh, Jesus, all the paranoid conspiracy theorists are crawling out of the woodwork today.
Here, Church Lady: Encyclopedia Britannica.
Or do you contend that EB is not a trustworthy source, staffed as it no doubt is by *gasp* college-educated *gasp* liberals *gasp*!
carlos the dwarf
11th graders are generally 16 or 17 years old. I knew plenty of kids growing up who could have handled the academic workload of college at 16. I knew almost no kids who had at 16 the emotional maturity that college demands.
Also, this sort of tracking system serves only to lock in inherited advantages. The education system should be doing all it can to put all kids on an equal footing. Look at the British system to see what a test-based tracking system does.
Um, this is already happening. What you’ve just described is only a slight exaggeration of the state of the American ghetto circa 2010.
I like it but for a different reason. My son, a senior in high school, has been bored out of his mind for the last two years and that’s with taking some honors classes. And being beaten about the head and shoulders with totally asinine bureaucratic rules (5 seconds late for class = go to Lock Out) has given him a massive contempt for authority.
He was admitted into a college experience program this year and is now taking his second class at a community college (one of the best, if not the best in the state) and he is thriving. And no, he is not taking Welding or Intro to Nascar Tech or HVAC Repair, he’s aced Intro to Expository Writing and is now taking Intro to Sustainability. He’s being challenged and for the first time in a long while, he comes home and excitedly tells me about what he’s learning. He would have been much better off if he’d had this option for the past two years rather than languishing in high school classes he mostly despised.
And you have a point too – why keep kids in high school if they don’t want to be there? Ya know, some people are perfectly content with a vocational education. Some folks actually CHOOSE to become hair stylists or auto mechanics or plumbers or carpenters or bus drivers and there’s nothing wrong with that if they’re paid a liveable wage/
And how do we know that the so-called President isn’t an imposter who stole the real Barack Obama’s identity?
(Yes, I know. It’s unfair to make teabaggers look insane by quoting you in context.)
Hey, the article you linked got this right unlike Obama himself.
Obama lies about where he met his wife. Why?
So when is the brilliant Obama going to release his transcripts from high school, Occidental, Columbia or Harvard?
Bingo! We have a winner.
As our rather tattered social contract currently reads, everybody gets a high school level education for free, and everything after that you have to pay for. Whatever the other merits of this proposal (and I agree with others above who have pointed them out), it is a dangerous idea to cut back on the number of years of guaranteed free education. The tracking of students within our current system by economic class is already bad. This could and probably will make it even worse.
Does anybody seriously believe that a population of “keep the gubmit out of my medicare” old people is going to vote in the extra taxes or expanded bond issues to pay for an expanded community college system?
If we are going to do this, we’d better lower the legal drinking age to 16 while we’re at it. The kids are going to need it.
What could be an unintended consequence is that those lower tier people would be more attractive to companies that can justify paying them less because they don’t have as complete an education – pushing out those with full degrees for non-technical jobs.
Good God. Most 16 year olds haven’t figured out how to unhook a bra or consistently put on a condom. Point being, their whole world is changing in ways no one can really help them cope with, physically, mentally, emotionally, everything.
Sure there are a sample of well adjusted, stable personality young teens. But the overwhelming majority just aren’t ready for this kind of challenge.
I’ve long believed that we should slow kids down a little and not be pushing them so damn hard and so damn fast.
(haven’t read through all the comments, so sorry if I repeat anyone)
The first thing that jumps out at me is the transfer of educational costs from tax dollars to students. Schools are always looking for a way to cut costs, and allowing educationally competent students to move from public high school to community college will no doubt save money for school districts. (In fact, it look from the article they’re getting money do implement this, so it’s a twofer.)
I think that presents both positives and negatives. There is so much emphasis on remediation and poorly-performing students (from the WH on down) that legitimate concerns can be raised whether ‘average’ students are getting their fare share of funds and resources. Shunting them out of the public high school system two years early doesn’t do much to alleviate those concerns. However, maybe letting them out of a system that underserves them is a better option than keeping them in it?
The downside of that is availability of funds for the college-bound student. We need to be sure that those students who choose to go to college early can afford to complete it, especially the first two years, which otherwise would have been taxpayer funded public high school years. Perhaps the students should be eligible for grants/loan forgiveness based on some proportion of the savings to the taxpayers.
There’s certainly a lot to digest in this proposal, but at this point I don’t see it as being used to further the haves from the have-nots.
Did anyone hear that? No?
Damn, I thought I heard something. Must have been the wind, or maybe some pests scurrying around outside.
I agree 100%. College wasn’t exactly the best place to go through puberty, and consequently, I never finished. It didn’t matter how “brilliant” I was, I just couldn’t cope with the social challenges.
I will never do that to my son.
Let me ask you a question: would you be okay with it if your kids decided to opt out after 10th grade?
If they fail they get a sheepskin and get cut loose? How does that help anything?
/simulating alarm clock.
Oh lovely. A plane crashed into a building in Austin fairly close to where I work.
And right on cue, guy in cube across from me is now suspecting terrorism.
Mike in NC
Of course they are. And we have the finest health care system in the world, too. The Masters of the Universe keep telling us so. Provided you have deep enough pockets to pay for them, that is. If not, go crawl into a ditch and die.
Transcripts? Right there next to the birth certificate! Next the wingers will be telling us “That One” never really passed his road test to get a drivers license; it was that damned affirmative action.
They already have this in Washington State – it’s called Running Start.
Kids get high school credits for the classes they take their Junior and Senior years. The money that would go to the high school for that student goes to the community college so tuition is paid for. If they plan it right, they get a HS Diploma and AA degree at the same time.
It’s a great way for smart kids without a lot of money to cut their college costs in half.
carlos the dwarf
OT–Did anyone else see Bernie Sanders on Maddow last night? He claimed that a HCR bill passed through reconciliation could have a Pell Grant expansion tacked on to it. Anyone know anything about this?
Also, does anyone else listen to Bernie and go, “damn, that’s the kick-ass grandpa I wish I had!”
EDIT: and also, that Rachel is the kick-ass mom you wish you had?
Marco Rubio Makes Obama Teleprompter Jokes While Reading From Teleprompter
My daughter is 1/2 credit away from graduating from High School. She is taking classes for a half day and bored out of her mind the rest of the day. Not good. I wish they would let her work in the art room a couple hours a day without taking a class. I was no star in school, but I always figured they wasted a year out of my life. Same for college for that matter, I got out of sequence and there was one required course that delayed my graduation for a year.
You shouldn’t have to show your transcripts for the rest of your life. Who cares that I flunked freshman English, twice? I still managed to earn a Ph.D. I’m guessing there is a way, independent of the transcript, that will show you who graduated with honors. The birthers probably wouldn’t be satisfied with a transcript Obama had, modifying transcripts is an age old tradition
@Brick Oven Bill: Another stupid statement like so much of your thinking (or lack there of) – bushwhack got better grades than Kerry because asswipe bush never had to earn any of his grades since he had a silver spoon up his ass. Prof’s passed the worthless shit. Kerry was poor and had to earn his grades. Learn the truth about the Ivy league system – the rich get a free pass at those schools – how do you think they get a multi-Billion dollar endowment?
@carlos the dwarf: “and also, that Rachel is the kick-ass mom you wish you had?”
Eh, older sister is the best I could claim, but thanks for reminding me of my old age.
p.s. MOAR POST PLEEZ JONCOLE
It’s pretty dangerous to assume that kids who struggle in school have no interest in learning. Because, sooner or later, students who do poorly will be subtly (and not so subtly) pushed into believing that school isn’t for them and that they should pursue an alternate (and further socially stigmatized) path. It’s rather shocking how entire school districts, from the Superintendent on down, justify shoveling whole chunks of their student population into lower tracks in order to save time and money simply by blaming said students for their lack of success.
So I think all of this is a terrible idea that will hurt a lot of kids who have been conditioned for years to believe that they don’t have what it takes. The same reason why I think tracking, in general, is a terrible idea.
Brick Oven Bill
I am quite confident that Kerry earned his grades DBrown.
See, we agree.
I am a little perplexed by the reaction here. Certainly, anything that can be done can be done for the wrong reason, and the test might in fact be “too low” of a level to be worth much — but it is certainly the case that too many students get nothing out of their last two years in high school, and further, that they are then forced to waste another year taking remedial courses in community college. Testing them in 10th grade in order to focus their minds does not seem like a generally bad strategy. They aren’t being forced to leave, and they wouldn’t be permitted to leave if they fail. As a pilot program, this seems really worthwhile to me.
Austin?! Isn’t that where the World Headquarters of Team America, World Police is located? Or am I still dazed from reading BOB, Paul and the Church Lady without drinking heavily first?
Well, as Dr. Prof. Goldberg might put it, it’s fascinating how many plane crashes have taken place in occupied areas since 9/11, although, of course, a tragedy for all the people involved. I suspect that your cubical colleague Is On To Something. Or else he’s deranged by fear. Ask his political affiliation, that should be a good indicator.
@JohnR: I’m going to go with you need a drink. Although that’s sort of my default answer for everything.
Short article with best pictures I’ve seen. Two still unaccounted for. And the building hit apparently housed several IRS offices. (conspiracy!)
Oh, and cubemate is most assuredly conservative. He listens to Rush many afternoons. Out loud.
Much of this depends on where you live in the country. The southeast and Appalachia was notoriously bad at teacher education before about 1980 and had “teachers” with 8th grade educations getting paid sometimes less than $10K per year teaching grade school courses. High school teachers were generally better, but not always. Ohio had marvelous schools until the state and fed (GOP) reduced their funding. Once we went to real estate based funding to subsidize the K-12 system it was pretty much over except for the brand new suburbs. They would do well for about 20 years and then hit a peak in their real estate tax revenue and the population would age out of having kids. Once a district hit those 2 walls their schools start to decline in quality and programming offerings pretty quickly.
In the olden (good olde days) many, many undesirable students simply dropped out after they reached 16 (once they could drive). No one who got married stayed in school, no one who got pregnant, many farm kids were out once they could significantly contribute to the family farm. We simply did not count truancy and drop out rates in the same way we do now.
I am wary of this 2 tier system but even at a pretty good high school the bulk of my academic learning could have been accomplished by the 11th grade. I was much happier about the quality of my education once i reached college and was able to take a much broader and high standard of academic courses. Mostly I was relieved to be in a place where there were others (and teachers) who valued academics and daily life wasn’t just about who was going to be the football captain and homecoming queen.
It amuses me to no end the members of my family (who did not attend 4 year institutions) who think that universities are nothing but minor league NFL and NBA farm clubs and every waking moment of every student is focused on their sports teams. They think I am absolutely crazy when I tell them that the bulk of the university’s business has absolutely nothing at all to do with sports. So I’m betting that this new system is primarily a tool to get HS kids into pro sports faster.
Bad Horse's Filly
It’s 12 pm, does anyone know where our fearless leader is today?
Some folks actually CHOOSE to become hair stylists or auto mechanics or plumbers or carpenters or bus drivers and there’s nothing wrong with that if they’re paid a liveable wage
Having worked in the corporate world, I have a lot more respect for a capable auto mechanic than I do for 90% of MBAs out there.
I think it is vital that we develop a system of vocational education. We had this once, but have lost focus. ollege is not the right choice for every kid. My father went to a technical high school which taught him pretty much the basic trades.
He continued his studies on the GI bill after WWII. He always taught me that there is nothing menial about a trade. He said that it frequently offered far more gratification than running on some corporate treadmill. I did not heed his advice, however have a good friend who is a cabinet maker. He loves what he does more than I have loved most of the jobs I’ve held.
Despite the economy, there is enormous demand for skilled machinists, draftsmen, as well as in areas like HVAC service.
These are good paying jobs, with benefits. They offer real opportunities to students who are not interested in pursuing college.
But we need to increase training for them. This would be a high return investment of tax dollars.
Some folks actually CHOOSE to become hair stylists or auto mechanics or plumbers or carpenters or bus drivers and there’s nothing wrong with that if they’re paid a liveable wage.
Completely agree. And all the jobs listed are ones that can’t be outsourced overseas. Somebody is going to bus the tables and staff the quikmarts and do all those other small menial unexciting unskilled jobs that an economy needs.
I want to add my vote as someone whose kids are getting a better education than was available in the public schools where my husband and I lived 30 years ago. Our high school is similar to a college campus, with challenging courses and a lot of freedom–exactly what was said upthread about kids being ready for the courseload of college but not the emotional maturity to do well away from home. That said, it’s in the western suburbs of Boston in a community known for its schools; the whole state and nation aren’t like this.
One of the poorer high schools with good MCAS results, Somerville, was known for its strict standards–fail MCAS in 10th and you go to doing a lot of remedial work. The article about this fussed about spending a lot of time learning to write a 5 paragraph essay even if this was maybe boring for 16 year olds, oh dear–if you can’t write the simple essay, you need to learn to write the simple essay. What should their English classes be covering except basic skills, for a group who have not mastered basic skills?
Side note–why does a thread on education reform and gypsy seniors (whom I’ve met/heard of in many countries, living this life because it allows for a lot of travel) attract people who want to allege a conspiracy behind how the president met his wife? Isn’t that a little weird even for birfers?
Brick Oven Bill
Janet teaches us:
“There is no reason to believe that terrorism or criminal activity is involved.”
Of course not. It was a direct hit on a building sitting in the middle of undeveloped land. Where did Janet go to school?
The system worked.
Oh, and Tim McVeigh.
Damn. Never finishing puberty…that must be rough.
But don’t worry Big Guy, you’ll get there one day!
Whose, Deborah. Not “who’s.”
Apparently your kids aren’t getting a good enough education…
“I’ve been a hiring manager for almost 20 years, and the average college-educated kid is less literate on a lot of levels than most class of ‘73 high school grads. And our techie culture adds in an induced ADHD aspect (I’m in IT where we all have to multitask, and we all see our abilities to focus on a single thing impacted). The kids today can google anything, but they aren’t being taught how to evaluate the quality of the information, probably the most important skill they’ll need for the rest of their lives.”
This is total horseshit.
Class of ’73 = 55-years-old today. A majority of the Class of ’73 voted for Bush in 2004. A majority of you voted for Sarah Palin. Hell, a majority of those who actually graduated in ’73 probably voted for Reagan twice. And a majority of you will vote Republican in 2010. The Class of 2003 committed none of these crimes.
The Class of 2003 was too young to create the tech bubble or the housing bubble or the banking crisis and was too young to vote in the 2002 Election when the Class of ’73 voted for Republicans who were going to take us to war and shred the constitution.
The Class of 2003’s record is not yet written. But the Class of ’73, as a group, showed a clear love of ponzi schemes and foreign wars. The Class of ’73 has shown an incredibly poor ability to “evaluate the quality of information” and if the Class of ’03 isn’t being taught this skill, it might have something to do with their parents being so completely worthless in this regard that a majority of them were on-board with destroying this country in under a decade.
@Mark: Begun, The Boomer War has.
@A Mom Anon:
You’re so right. If righties & business had had their way, today it’s very likely that the only parks in this country would have been gated ones for the wealthy if there was any pristine land left that hadn’t been plundered & ruined.
huh. no one’s squawking so far about the National Test that will include not only maths and English but also History and SCIENCE! Really, can’t we cue the screaming about the tests being designed to impose knowledge of Evolution and the Non-Evangelical Founding Fathers upon our sweet dewy-eyed descendants? That There EVIL National Government Wresting Control of the Teaching to the Test away from Just Add Hot Water Local Control?
I personally don’t see too much of problem with adding some sort of a shorter degree in addition to a HS diploma. It’s sort of the AA to the whole BA/BS level. Some people opt to get it and at least it’s something for their effort rather than the all or nothing system in place now. And if you can get into at least the community college system with the HS(2) degree, over and about how the for-profits colleges will work with it (and they will if there’s a market) then it needn’t be the terminal lead weight on your entire future life that some fear. The sheer mass and variety of the colleges in the US, especially the for-profits will give our system flexibility that other countries lack. We’ll still be stuck with the whole tied system based on cash but we’ve got that now in spades, hearts, clubs and diamonds.
and call yourself a bunch of DFHs. NOT enough ranting about this culture not valuing the work of labouring classes.
these guys are weird.
everyone uses a teleprompter. I mean their god was a former hollywood actor.
these guys are weird.
everyone uses a teleprompter. I mean their god was a former Hollywood actor.
Some amazing assumptions in this thread: that once someone goes a vocational route they’ll forever be there; that 4 years of face time in H.S. somehow equates to better (what exactly isn’t quite clear); that a college education is essential for people to avoid being part of the “lumpenproletariat”. Seriously?
And everyone’s high schoolers are getting better educations now (bet they’re all above average too). So where are statistics like these coming from?
Not to be too negative, but I’ve been reading their resumes and interviewing these brilliant grads for several years, and there’s some scary gaps there. We really need to focus more on education that teaches all of them how to learn, they all will need to do that their entire lives.
Oh hell, where’s the preview?
Sweet jumping jeebuz, Paul L and b.O.b. in one thread. More fail than I can tolerate—I’ll be at the bar if anybody needs me.
Well, here’s another reason kids will want to get the hell out of public schools early:
@trollhattan: Squeeze over, we’ve got Church Lady too.
Looks like I made a little word salad there. Puberty came late for me, but thankfully I got that wrapped up about 15 years ago. Now if only I could say the same for college…
@Brick Oven Bill:
stop embarrassing yourself.
From TIME’s article about the Tea Party nonsense:
Math time: 1 in 5 is 20% of Americans, or roughly half of the Republican base. And yet the article, speaking to both Republicans and Democrats, is “Be Afraid, Be Very Afraid”
Brick Oven Bill
“There is no reason to believe that terrorism or criminal activity is involved.”
Of course not. The plane was reportedly at full throttle when it hit the IRS offices. Then there is the strange coincidence that the pilot had reportedly just burned down his house.
Oh, and Tim McVeigh.
Yeah, that’s nothing new. I don’t know what town you are from, but growing up in SoCal I know there are plenty of people (especially poor and retired folks) who live in trailer parks. This is not equivalent to homelessness at all, since they pay rent or park fees, plus water, utilities, etc.
It’s usually cheaper than an apt, yet gives them a sense of having their own space, like a house. And those trailers can be somewhat comfortable on the inside, just not very spacious.
re: Tea Party: Juan Cole puts it all in perspective:
Off topic, but definitely worth checking out- “Black Man Puts Feet On Desk, Wingnuts Freak Out” from Wonkette.
Wow, the plane that flew into a building in Austin TX was stolen by a man who had earlier set his house on fire. His daughter and wife were rescued from the house by a neighbor.
@Brick Oven Bill:
on second thought, BOB maybe right.
This sounds like the teabagger who killed 3 cops in Pittsburgh and the teabagger who killed a security guard at the Holocaust museum.
After all, what do teabaggers like to cry about the most — taxes.
Heck yes. My plumber waaaaaay outearns me and my silly college degree, and most of it is cash, to boot.
This does not mean that a person who chooses to be a capable auto mechanic is not entitled to the same kind of quality education as those MBAs. Yet that is exactly the kind of scenario that tracking systems prohibit. Thinking that some students pursue vocational training because that’s what they want is rather demeaning in and of itself, because there are students who pursue that kind of education because that is all that is left for them after the politically important parents in their school district (or state where there are deep disparities in funding) hog all the resources for their own children.
I put to you that if a student who wants to be an auto mechanic should have the same opportunity to study art, music, history, and the whole gambit of subjects taught at the secondary level. At the same academic level as any other student. But tracking takes that opportunity away from them. Whats even worse is that it conditions them, from an early age, to attribute a lack of intelligence on their part as the reason that opportunity is denied to them. The fact that there are brilliant auto mechanics refutes this, but this refutation only occurs after they have left the system.
And the part that is absolutely unforgivable is that connected parents, even liberal ones who exclaim to high heaven that they believe in equal educational opportunities, will fight tooth and nail to preserve systems that privilege their children at the expense of others.
Oh, he does not. He was a “summer associate” when he met his wife. In 1989. He started law school in 1988.
“Summer associate” means “intern”.
He was a student when he met his future wife. Which is what he said.
You know, for someone who is absolutely obsessed with the Duke case, you’re really quick to go throwing accusations around.
“Obama entered Harvard Law School in late 1988. He was selected as an editor of the Harvard Law Review at the end of his first year, and was elected as the first African-American president of the prestigious journal in his second. During his summers, he returned to Chicago where he worked as a summer associate at the law firms of Sidley & Austin in 1989 and Hopkins & Sutter in 1990.”
teabaggers on the attack in austin? plane apparently crashes purposefully into IRS building
“Forget it Jake, it’s Chinatown”
Being students at the same time has nothing to do with when either graduated, or even whether either graduated. Or when they started dating, or why, or how they happened to meet up later.
Damn, Paul, even for you this is lame work.
We are putting you on an unpaid leave of absence.
Yes, the Boomers have begun (well, they done begun it a long time ago) an attempt to rehabilitate their image. Can’t attack grandma, so let’s start bitching about our damned kids these days.
Boomers run the world, and created the situation we’re in right now (not merely economic and political; also the need for a college degree to do a menial job – I suppose that’s economic.) Take some fucking ownership, yo!
You should see how many times the nitwits linked to it.
It was a whole conservative-blog firestorm that we completely missed.
They spent days on this mystery, and still got it wrong.
Please name a single presidential candidate who released his or her own transcripts.
Brick Oven Bill
Janet is still saying:
“There is no reason to believe that terrorism or criminal activity is involved.”
As Democrats go wild.
Scratches! Punches! Missiles!
FIRE! FIRE! FIRE!
Chrystal informs her boyfriend:
“I’m going to stab you, motherfucker!”
It seems that life is faster-paced as a Democrat than as a Teabagger. All Teabaggers do is gather together peacefully and carry signs. Teabaggers are quaint.
Oh, and Tim McVeigh.
(Between G&Ts) Blue Texan reads “Reason” so we don’t have to, and found this nugget (I acknowledge the inherent disconnect at work here).
Excellent, my double is ready. Hey, where’s the lime?
Late to the thread, but I have to disagree. In Virginia the better state colleges have agreements with various community colleges that successful completion of a two-year curriculum guarantees admission to the four-year program with all credits transferring. I know that William & Mary has a deal like that with one CC that actually gets W&M profs teaching at the school and which I believe is good for a transfer to any liberal arts major at W&M. Both VA Tech’s engineering program and VCU’s engineering program (which was set up for VCU by Tech) have deals with community colleges across the state for completion of a specific curriculum designed by Tech.
So what I’d expect to see, at least ’round here, if VA adopted this, is the exact opposite of what Anne Laurie is anticipating. I’d expect that technically minded (read: nerdy) HS students would be foregoing the prom, graduating early, taking two years of CC and graduating from good state uni’s at the tender age of 19-20, and a considerable number of them probably staying another two years for a masters, because why the hell not?
Besides, the whole first two years of core at most unis is just a repeat of the last two years of high school anyway. Might as well do it once in a CC and have done with it.
@Sly: Oh yeah, I’ve just met LOADS of MBA students with an appreciation and knowledge of the fine arts. It’s simply AMAZING how they cram in all those renaissance credits into their course-loads. Sorry, I was physically too close to the business school to avoid that major major giggle you provided. Vapid lot of air-breathers… mutter mutter mutter No, but seriously, you’re assuming a full-bore life-time tracking system and I don’t see how the nation is going to get that immediately given the flexibility of our existing for-profit plus multiple state-school system of colleges/universities.
carlos the dwarf
This is very true. Near where I went to college, there’s a trailer park that bills itself as a retirement community–it has lion statues on pedestals at either side of the main gate, and it has a swimming pool and a “clubhouse” [a slightly larger trailer.]
Cripes. This kind of thinking is what prompts screams of elitism from the right.
Maybe I’m missing something but I don’t see anything in the cited NYT article stating that kids will be forced into one track or another. Sounds to me like kids and their parents will have a CHOICE. And having the right to choose – as opposed to having the state mandate how long your kid needs to stay in high school – is a good thing. IMO.
Community colleges in NC have a similar transfer agreement with NC public universities.
You linked to an 80-page report on test performance in various countries without saying what concerned you about it. I assume you’re talking about 9th grade math scores.
I lived in Canada until I was 22. I can most certainly assure you that if you think young Americans are idiots, you’d think young Canadians are idiots too. The Canadian school system is identical to the American one – outcomes at the low end are a bit better because it’s not as segregated.
You wrote: “We really need to focus more on education that teaches all of them how to learn, they all will need to do that their entire lives.” Well, that ain’t Canada, so don’t hold out better Canadian scores in 9th grade math as evidence that the American system is failing relative to other systems.
Latin honors are published in commencement announcements, printed on diplomas, and listed in the alumni directory.
In addition, a college will typically confirm a former student’s enrollment and graduation status (including honors) upon request.
Also in Virginia, but I don’t think the outcome jenniebee proffered is likely for a whole host of reasons, not the least of which is that the collaborative agreements (a great thing, mind you) are distinctly non-vocational and require students to finish in two years 60 credits of exactly the kind of core requirements that they would have taken at W&M, in order to be eligible for automatic transfer (which isn’t really automatic, but it’s close enough). Those collaboration agreements also don’t knock out the high school requirements.
The real benefit of this kind of program is for students to be able to obtain more meaningful vocational training without foregoing a level of educational competence that should be taken for granted for all people who have managed to stay in school for 11 years.
Cheryl from Maryland
I thought the last two years of HS were to prepare you for lame boring meetings and similar silliness at your job. It’s an important skill to look like you care when you don’t.
I actually very seriously considered testing out in 10th grade and going to community college early, with my father’s encouragement and support. But then he was educated in the Dutch system and thought it was silly for me to take two more years of high school rather than going onto higher learning already (he went to University at 16.) I opted to stay in mostly because my friends were all there and I was still doing extra-curricular stuff that I would have to have given up if I left. And I don’t regret doing that because I got 4 years at UCLA instead of 2 years CC and 2 years at a U. But if my children were to have any inclination toward testing out of high school early I would certainly support them!
I realize that some of this new push is probably budget related rather than a sincere desire to make sure we have good education, but it really isn’t always necessary for every student to have 12 years at a public school before going on to college. Many of them could do it much sooner so why not let them?
Late to the party, but anyways…
The English system is completely slanted towards privileged children getting the best educations. They get to enrolled in the best schools their parents can pay for. I believe their schools are ranked based on how their students do on each of the different ‘A Levels’, which are sort of like our ACT/SAT scores.
They have special cram schools for the rich students are in danger of not scoring high enough on their A levels to get into the prestigious British universities.
The A levels are hard, I don’t believe most British students are taught A level course work, its a lot like our “Gifted and Talented” and AP course work. Its a track you get on.
I’m think its poor logic to think someone who has no interest in going to college means they have a great interest in being a plumber or some other vocational skill.
Some anecdotal evidence, my wife, who has a MA in Econ and accepted into a PhD program, was removed from her G&T track, not because she was doing poorly in it but because she didn’t score high enough on the IQ test one year. I personally was tested multiple times for being developmentally challenged due to my poor grades in school only to find out I 140+ IQ score. If it hadn’t been for fact I entered high school the same year they added CS courses I wouldn’t have graduated from high school and would have a GED instead. The magnet CS courses counted for 1/2 of my GPA in high school and I was lucky that they added special CS courses for several of us. We are now both are highly paid members of our professions and very valued employees.
This 3 tier system is going to turn out terrible for everyone but the rich. Its going to make it almost impossible for intelligent members of the middle and lower class to get high quality college educations. They will have to overcome not only economic challenges of affording to goto 11/12 grade, you think they’ll be sending a buss to pick up just one student?, they’ll have to overcome the social challenges of being from different socioeconomic class as the other students.
I did Running Start and started working at Microsoft when I was 18. Just sayin.
@Sly: i’ll grant it’s been a while since i’ve been in high school. but i do recall the difference between my tracked classes and untracked classes. suffice to say, i learned a good deal less in untracked courses. the teacher goes at the pace of the slowest student. for the more advanced (and frankly, more intelligent) students, it was detrimental.
balance is what is needed, despite how difficult is it to achieve. certainly we should not discourage those who want to learn but may difficulty with school. however, we also need to recognize that those who are intelligent and successful still need encouragement and challenges. i don’t know what the best solution is; just that it’s not anything so simple as tracked vs. untracked.
My point is that an MBA student has more freedom to pursue those options than a vocational student, for reason unrelated to academic merit. My argument is that both students should have those options regardless as to whether they actually pursue them. The issue is that the vocational student will likely have those options taken away from them before they walk in the door, and MBA students disregard them because they’re a bunch of assholes. This does not, in any sense, approach an ideal distribution of educational resources.
First, I really don’t give a shit what prompts screams of elitism from a group of people who adhere to Calvinist exceptionalism, both in social and economic terms. I’d answer that challenge wherever, and whenever, it was issued.
Perhaps worded poorly, but I’m trying to combat the assumption that people choose careers based on an ideal of what they want. They don’t. People choose careers based on a range of choices that are available to them, and those choices can be restricted both by external and internal factors. The chief external factor is resources that are available to provide the necessary training. The internal factor is the perception that they are not worth the effort. Not smart enough. Too lazy. Not the “right kind” of people. Which is a convenient excuse for school districts to justify an unequal distribution of those resources. Studies that show that tracking systems have absolutely nothing to do with merit are treated as inconvenient and ignored.
That’s the beauty of tracking. You don’t have to force anyone to do anything. You just set up the system, limit the top spots, and tell everyone else that they simply don’t cut it. So sorry, but you just aren’t good enough. Or, you don’t limit the top spots and watch as the upper track balloons out of proportion in wealthy districts and shrivels on the vine in poor districts.
I’m making the claim that such a system leads to de facto segregation of school systems, and there is an ample supply of academic scholarship that backs this up. Yes, parents will be given a choice as to whether their kids will stay for another two years in secondary school. And when the vast majority of those students/parents magically turn out to be predominantly Black and poor, school systems and the government will fret endlessly about how to close an achievement gap that they created and exacerbated.
PS, it turns out HLS, like most schools, is quite happy to publish the names of honors recipients.
Of course there’s nothing stopping you from doing your own research.
I distinctly remember that the curriculum in my Ohio high school ceased to introduce new material after the sixth grade. I had an age equivalent of 26.2 when I was 10 years old, and probably had good reason to graduate early, but thanks to Ohio’s laws concerning early graduation, I was not allowed to. Now people are proposing that the people who could have used the extra couple of years, had they not dropped out, get to leave and go, not to college, but into bullshit service jobs. Wow. That’s almost as dumb as federalism.
As for the seniors, what!?! Sweet zombie Jesus!?! They misspend my tax dollars, cut one of the few jobs that used to be done well enough to actually for the government to rob me at gunpoint for without too much resistance from me, and are now asking Grandma to work for free in some of the worst places to break your eroded-ass hip in the industrial world. Fuck.
I think there would be a revolution if it didn’t seem like picking on the retarded kid.
Dear fucking lord, I break for a meeting, and the whole damn plane crash case breaks open…
So yeah, you guys caught that the plane crash was apparently deliberate. And it now sounds like the house fire (itself fairly big news here before the crash) was started by the same guy that flew the plane into the building.
Just fucking lovely.
Re: Tiered education-
Its one thing to choose to be a plumber versus a professional; its another thing when the choice is made for you at the 4th grade.
It would be one thing if we had a vibrant manufacturing sector where skilled tradesmen earned a decent middle class living; its another when our economy is so skewed towards college educated workers that not having one consigns someone to a lifetime of limited income options.
It would be one thing if our society was one in which children of all income levels could enjoy the same meals, play at the same public playgrounds, swim at the same public pools; if people of all incomes could drive on the same non-toll roads or non-toll carpool lanes. Its another thing when our society is progressively offering benefits to those who can pay, and shutting out those who can’t.
When you combine disparate education tracks, with toll roads, and private playgrounds within gated communities, you end up with a permanent and inescapable ghetto of second class citizens.
Here is my take on the Obama administration and jobs from the first paragraph of an article I wrote on my blog darnfunnyonline.com this morning:
“Once upon a time there was a young boy named Obama. He lived on a farm and even though he was just a boy he was in charge of the farm. No one really knew how he got there or why he was in charge but he was, to be sure. Some say it was due to the magic of the barnyard that got him there and that young Obama learned his trade by shoveling out the barnyard. But others felt that he was just a natural at shoveling and that it is how he somehow convinced all the people at the farm to let him be in charge (but that is the story of another fairy tale.)”
@Cheryl from Maryland:
That was basically the attitude of one of my sociology professors in college: the point of high school was to give you the skills that would make you a suitable employee, which included basic literacy, math, the ability to pay attention, and deference to authority. Employers only cared that you’ve proved you could follow orders for 4 years, not that you’ve learned things about history, science, or literature.
He was in his 80s and has studied the sociology of education for about 60 years, but you could definitely sense that he had a nostalgic view of secondary education back in the day, especially with respect to vocational training. I’d say he would think that’s still true (I can’t remember if he addressed that specifically); even with college grads today, it’s not like most employers are interested in your specific knowledge, but rather the underlying skills you were supposed to have learned.
@Barbara: I may be missing something, but I don’t see anything in the article about the tests only being offered to vocational students. And I don’t see how the HS requirements are even relevant to the question of admission to a 4-year, since the collaborative agreements don’t specify what the high school curriculum is, only that the student have a diploma from an accredited school or a GED.
Do community colleges even do vo-tech any more? Checking my local CC, most of what they have is the first two years of a four year, with Career prep coursework for… paralegal, dental assistant, Sign Language to English translation, Hospitality Management (although that may be another collaborative program with Tech which has a big Hospitality Mgmt program), prep courses for Microsoft certifications, and something called “Fire Science Technology” which appears to focus on sprinkler system design. I don’t think CC’s are where you go to learn to turn a wrench anymore.
That’s likely because the school district had a fixed view of intelligence and made little to no effort to help “less intelligent” students become “more intelligence”. Intelligence, despite the common perception, is not a fixed attribute. Personally, I think this has a lot to do with teachers who have no earthly idea that they have to teach content literacy (how to learn something in a given field) along with content knowledge. A lot don’t even realize that content literacy even exists, and just assume that some people are just “naturally gifted” at math, science, social studies, etc.
The problem is that such systems, as they currently exist, have very little to do with how “intelligent and successful” a particular student is. On the one side of me is a district that is largely upper-class and White, and over 50% of the student body is in the honors and AP track. Because even a C in an Honors/AP English class looks better on a college transcript than a B+ in the same class in the standard track. A lot of these students don’t even bother taking the AP exam. Quite a few teachers refuse to allow students to take the exam if they feel they won’t get a good enough score because it makes them, the teacher, look better when a larger percentage of their students who do take the exam do well.
This has nothing to do with merit and everything to do with politics.
Possible suicide note of Austin kamikaze.
It sounds like it may have been terrorism, but your cube mate is going to immediately do a 180 and deny it was terrorism of any kind, because it sounds like it was a white guy who did it.
First he tried to kill his wife and daughter by setting the house on fire. Nice.
@Mnemosyne: He hasn’t been around since I got back from the meeting, but yeah, that’s exactly what I’m expecting. Or if he doesn’t do the 180, he’ll act like this was 9/11: The Sequel.
Dude who crashed the plane apparently was a right-wing nutjob too. At least from what I’m hearing of the suicide note (I tried reading it, but it was too rambly within the first two paragraphs, so I gave up).
Hmm, this wouldn’t be some of that right wing domestic terrorism we were warned about last year, would it?
Software engineer who had had conflicts with the I.R.S. Sounds like the return of the Black Panthers to me.
Or possibly, just too stupid to look it up:
PS, and there’s also the fact that few grades can be “bestowed” on anyone at HLS:
Something inside them dies when someone they dislike intensely does well.
It is absolutely amazing how much energy conservatives have put into denying that anyone they deem “lesser” deserves a degree, let alone earned honors. It’s not just Obama, either. They did the same to Sotomayor. Despite the fact that they were told, repeatedly, that law school exams are identified with a random assigned number. They know this, and still, they continue.
I keep picturing them at graduations, when the person they deem “unworthy” strolls up, to get the award:
Everyone else is looking down, embarrassed.
Some people are beyond embarrassment, it seems.
Imagine how much it must suck to hear this again and again and again, if you’re Barack Obama or Sonia Sotomayor.
You’d have to wear you cap and gown as daily attire.
I like that Sotomayor has a really freaking impressive robed get-up now. It must kill them. Can we get her a crown, or is that too much?
jenniebee, a lot of community colleges have certification programs that are the white collar equivalent of votech. I am sure the programs vary. As a technical matter I don’t see why a student couldn’t do the W&M/UVA, etc. collaboration from an earlier point either, my point is that they are less likely to be prepared to do the more or less “true” college level academic work required to succeed at that program. It depends on where they live: In rural communities, you will likely get more challenging coursework at the CC, and therefore might as well go for it, but an awful lot of high schools in NoVA are going to be a better bet for more accessible, high level courses of the kind you need to get into W&M — plus you would get two bites at the apple — once out of high school, and then once again after two years of CC. On the other hand, as a rural high school student, with a good academic high school record, you have a better shot at getting into the state universities right out of high school.
I have a daughter who is senior in high school I am pretty steeped in this right now.
Re HCR and public option:
All I have to say is , Chuck Yeah! Don’t eff with NY’ers!
As you know, I’ve been committed to a strong public option throughout the entire health care reform process.
First it was in the Senate bill, then it was out. But now, thanks to the tenacity of a group of four Democratic Senators — Michael Bennet (CO), Sherrod Brown (OH), Kirsten Gillibrand (NY), and Jeff Merkley (OR) — there is a renewed push to create a public option as part of health care reform.
I just added my name to their effort to pass a public option through the reconciliation process, and I wanted you to be the first to know.
This is far from a done deal, but it’s an opportunity to break through the obstructionism Republicans have pushed for the past year.
Let’s keep fighting,
@Remember November: Red meat. Don’t expect anything tangible out of this.
@Randy P: You know they don’t actually teach English to Comp Sci majors, right? You’ve heard the old joke I am sure: if you make it possible for programmers to program in plain English you will find they are unable to read or write English. (Full disclosure I was an Eng Lit major and my dear husband is was a Comp Sci major. Guess which one of us is actually using their degree… LOL!)
At an auto show, I noticed a booth at the Mercedes display (and at the BMW display, too) offering information on how to become a “Mercedes Benz Technician” the new name for auto mechanics. An interested young person needed better than average; reading, math and computer skills and of course be interested in repairing cars. The guy manning the booth told me close to 80% of repairs on new cars don’t require tools, virtually everything under the hood and the drivetrain is adjustable via computer. There are still brake jobs and wheel alignments (although a computer does most of that job now) and some other repairs that still use tools. He said it was hard to find qualified kids to go to the MB tech school even though the job will in time pay well over a 100k at a busy store. Think kids on an early track out of high school are going to have the skills to qualify for MB tech school? I doubt it.
I really like the idea of cutting mandatory schooling by two years. I just don’t think all kids are cut out for 12-years-plus kindergarten. So many drop out anyway … My husband, who eventually earned a PhD, was a high school dropout. School bored and frustrated him. I also had a professor in grad school who had dropped out of school for the same reasons. Schools are becoming more and more like prisons, plus they aren’t actually educating students. And I don’t think the powers that be really want an educated citizenry. I really don’t. My daughter is homeschooling her kids because she can’t stand the public school system, which drugs kids, brings the cops in to discipline kids, teaches obedience over thought, and so on. I don’t see how it can be a bad thing to give kids the option to leave school early.
We pulled our son out of school in his junior year because he hated it so much. He was home-schooled and also attended community college. And he was eventually admitted to the University of Michigan, which is not a shoo-in. So I wouldn’t want to automatically assume that this is about vocational tracking. I would also remind everyone of the horrendous dropout rate in many schools. If students are considered to have achieved a diploma, why not give it to them early? I don’t see a down side here.