They do what they do.
Thinking about schools and peers and parent-child attachments....I came across one of my favorite posts .
Compulsory is the whole problem to begin with, I sometimes think.If a state is going to raise the legal dropout age to 18, then the state should offer some practical alternatives to high school for 16-18 year olds, like vocational programming. Why has vo-tech disappeared? Long after all the 21st century jobs are outsourced to Asia, there will still be a need here for hairdressers, electricians, carpenters, mechanics and nurse's aids.
We have vo-tech here in NY. Most districts outsource to BOCES. The students don't want to be there either. The need to become capable of supporting oneself via legal means is not on the personal radar.
A relative was the principal of a large vo-tech high school, retiring in the 70s. The programs offered included tool&die, auto mechanics, sheet metal, carpentry etc, plus the full range of office options, a full cosmetology course and a nurse's aide program. My relative was proud of the fact that he had added an LPN (licenced practical nurse) program.I guess those have been tossed overboard in the wake of the anti-tracking movement. I see nothing wrong with tracking, as long as the track is the student/parent choice.
The Montgomery County, MD board of education just came out with the same position: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/10/27/AR2009102700642.html?wprss=rss_education
You can make them come to school, but you can't make them learn.
vo-tech is fine if all you're interested is employment. It's not enough if we're interested in a civil society that will vote on critical issues.
Ari, I disagree. Just because someone works in vo-tech doesn't mean they don't have the desire or ability to understand issues. It certainly isn't true of most of the people I know with vo-tech backgrounds, across several, very different states. A number of them own profitable businesses. On the other hand, I know a number of college grads who drifted through school without acquiring knowledge or skills and who have no desire to be informed citizens. They are still drifting along with weak work habits and no visible ambition. I think we, as a country, have more need of good auto mechanics, plumbers, electricians, hairdresses, OR techs etc. than we do of anthropologies or "studies" grads.
Oops, I meant "anthropologists."
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