Should we eliminate senior year?
Here’s what happens when politicians get into the business of making educational decisions: They come up with ridiculous ideas like eliminating senior year in high school to save money.
A Utah legislator toyed with eliminating 12th grade, one of a number of proposals he made to shrink government spending. After being criticized, he pulled back, suggesting that senior year be made optional for kids who have completed their credits, which, he obviously didn’t know, is an opportunity already available in the state.
Don’t get me wrong: I don’t think senior year, as senior year now exists in many places, is sacrosanct. Reexamining who learns what when would be a useful exercise in American education.
But picking a grade to cut out of a whole sequence is like lopping off an inning or two from baseball games to save time: There are necessary changes in strategy (batting order, who pitches when, etc.) and I'm sure baseball lovers would make the argument that the substance of the game would be destroyed.
In school, kids would be applying to college earlier, even if they aren’t academically or emotionally ready, and curriculum would be pushed down even more than it has been under No Child Left Behind. Today kids are being required to read at ages when many simply aren’t ready, and the results are disastrous for their long-term education.
Of course, No Child Left Behind was drafted by dozens and dozens of people, none of them teachers. And we know how well that program has worked out.
Sounds to me like the teachers are on to something.
What do you think about the notion of eliminating senior year?
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| February 17, 2010; 12:15 PM ET
Categories: High School, No Child Left Behind, Teachers | Tags: high school, high senior year
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Posted by: sideswiththekids | February 18, 2010 1:55 PM | Report abuse
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