Friday, November 07, 2008

Promote Illiteracy: Give Kids a Diploma in Tenth Grade!

There is debate in New Hampshire on whether or not teens in high school should graduate in 10th grade, rather than 12th. Is this a half-baked attempt to compete with the academic performance ratings of other countries? Maybe folks in New Hampshire feel that because Senior Cut Out Day exists, why not just give the little buggers the whole year, ...or two. After all, literacy is over-rated. Everybody knows that having a chocolate blackberry to text in "chat room speak" is what we really work for in life. LOL!

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Well, it may or may not be as dumb of an idea as it sounds depending on how it is implemented, but overall I would remain extremely skeptical of such a plan, but I can relate to the sentiment.

My senior year of high school was essentially my first semester of college. With the exception of my English and Social Studies requiremens, I had all my NYS Regents diploma requirements met at the end of 10th grade (I already had three years of math, science and foriegn langauge at that point).

As I was preparing my senior class schedule, it was loaded with four AP classes because there really wasn't anything else of substance to take. I mean, I guess I could have taken art classes all day, but that really would not have furtherd my education. My school said no becasue the courseload would be too much (going into senior year, I had all high school graduation requirements met). My mom showed up and got them to put me in my AP-heavy schedule with two words: "Graduate him." They changed their decision on my course selection instantly (and I graduated high school as a second semester freshman).

The biggest issue is the maturity of moving to the next education level. I was barely able to handle the change of pace that came with college at 18. Doing it after 10th grade would have been worse, and for that reason, instead of graduating the students that can academically do it, they need to present them with challenging options.

Of course, that would mean spending more money and What this sounds like to me, if you dig deeper, is a money saver. If kids are out in 10th grade, then the disctrict can save moeny on a host of extra curricular activites - prom, sports etc...

GT

Loren Christie said...

Great points, Greg. I agree with you. Kids should be pushed further academically, and prepped more thoroughly for college. There is always room for growth in the area of writing and critical thinking skills. As you say, I wasn't emotionally ready for the pace of college at 18 either, and hard work saved me. I was a mediocre student in HS, not because I was not smart. At times I found it difficult to focus on academics. Being a reader and a good writer helped me through. I just can't imagine my tenth grade self entering college.

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