There should be colleges all over the country where our young people can get two years of education- free. I think we should even give them the books and supplies they need! The classes they take should be basic, chosen from a prearranged list, and good grades should be mandatory. In fact, I think students could sign a contract that says if they fail then they will be required to pay for the classes. And what if we gave “A” students a discount on the next two years?
Radical? Not really. Naive? Maybe. However, if you look at the history of education and you consider the evolution of society, our high school graduates are no longer prepared to do anything productive in the real world. Oh, you can tell me all about the geniuses and exceptions who have created businesses and solved world problems and done just fine without a college degree. They have always existed and always will…but the majority of young people need something more to lead them down the path toward a rewarding and self-sufficient life. How well could you survive on the current minimum wage?
If you look at high school curriculums most of them are geared toward “college preparation” yet each year we seem to make it more and more difficult for the average teenager to go to college. Tuition rates get higher, interest on loans increases, the cost of living (on campus or off) rises- and I just heard yesterday that parents are now contributing less than ever before to their children’s college expenses.
I think there are two important things we are overlooking in the “big picture” of our ever-changing world. First of all, the majority of our high school graduates are children who have been spoiled, coddled, protected, and supported in ways that would confuse and astonish our great-grandparents’ generation. They need more time to mature, become independent, and prepare for employment. Second, it benefits ALL of us if the majority of our citizens are educated and self-supporting. Wouldn’t it be better to give our young people money and motivation when they can use it to build a better future, rather than waiting a few years and giving them money when they fail? We pay for people to eat. We pay for people to be in institutions. We pay for people to be in jail. Why not pay for people to be in college?
Just a thought…