You know, when I was in high school

I never knew about dual enrollment. I didn’t find out about such a thing until I was taking courses at a community college in my 40’s, and one of my classmates was a high school student doing dual enrollment. Is this a relatively new thing, or was there just a lack of information in the late 70’s?
Heck, I didn’t even know about *community* college when I graduated from high school. Even though my high school is highly rated, there was no education guidance that I can remember.

I live in Maryland and we are ranked in first place

Our drop out rates are fairly good and students here are expected to write essay exams by 2nd grade. What has happened is that our special education numbers are higher than average. Personally, I do not think that the answer is asking students to do developmentally inappropriate tasks, but to focus more on quality at the middle and high levels. Instead of pushing students to graduate when they can barely read, the options would be to continue to educate them and as long as they attend classes and do their best, they can get a Hugh school certificate of completion. This is an option for special education students, but I think that it should be an option for all. There are some jobs where persistence and dependability are more important than school smarts. This would tell these employers that these applicants have that important character trait.

Or, the other option that we provide is to continue taking classes until age 21. My school district offers this. Or, we have some students that complete courses through home study or self-paced online learning. Just as long as standards are high then I would rather see it done this way. Offer options to help students meet the standards, but do not lower them.