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.

The trend is going back to go tech and tracking students

But only in states that opted out of common core. The college track is so much harder than 20 years ago. The problem is that low income and race will be part of tracking. Language skills are critical and studies prove that on AVERAGE low income and esl students enter school with much less language skills. Thus they start off behind and may never catch up. Thus those kids get put in non college bound classes. Texas is not in common core and we are trying hard to figure it out.

Any comments?

The article opens with a set of statements that American educational achievements are slipping against world standards (but the article doesn’t explain how that’s measured or why it’s occurring). The article author then interviews four 30-something individuals who didn’t attend and/or graduate from college. Their perspectives on their current financial situations, and whether college would change those situations, were rather interesting. I also found it interesting that their attitudes about life and work and a variety of non-education issues, flavored their opinions on whether college would have been worthwhile. They also had some interesting opinions on how their current financial situation was caused by, and/or would have been helped (or not helped) by a college education. Frankly, I think their attitudes shaped their current situation far more than a college education would have. But I thought I’d share and see what the forum thought about the article, and the notions of a) whether college is necessary in today’s world and b) whether the American educational system is failing our young adults.