Should all students be planning on post-secondary education?

Yesterday, the website GOOD posted a story about Washington D.C. council chairman Kwame Brown proposing that high school seniors be required to take the SAT and apply to at least one college/trade school in order to graduate.

Washington Post has a blog entryon it, too.

Justin Locke, an admissions counselor for Saint Francis University in Loretto, left, talks with Mandolynn Ferrere, a William Penn student, during a college expo at Penn State York in October. (File photo by Paul Kuehnel)

It reminded me of our story about the York City School District, which now requires students to do a list of things – the Bearcat Bold 8, including take the SAT and apply to a post-secondary school – in order to fully participate in graduation ceremonies.

I recently sat in on an interesting YorkCounts forum on preparing students for higher education. During that talk, a presenter said that today,  being “college ready” and “career ready” are basically the same thing.

Do you agree?

About Angie Mason

I'm the education reporter at the York Daily Record. Follow me on Twitter: @angiemason1
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2 Responses to Should all students be planning on post-secondary education?

  1. Mike Rowe says:

    I absolutely do not agree. The education system has to change its focus from college prep to career prep. The fact is that not all students at the high school level will have a chance to succeed in college, not even through the first year. College has become big business and SOME college will take any graduate, just to get the tuition. But that should not be the goal for high schools across the country…just to get the student in the door of a college somewhere.This country will continue to struggle finding jobs and competing in world markets until we realize that you don’t need a college degree to be an employee in a manufacturing facility, to be a member of skilled trades or manual labor. And you don’t need a college degree to excel and make a lot of money in the trades, either. You simply need drive, enthusiasm and a skill set trained for these jobs. Want to change the system for the better? Make public secondary schooling optional and instill the same academic rigor that exists for magnate schools. Open trade schools for those who cannot keep up. The real world is tough and does not do hand-outs. Why is it a universally acceptable practice for school curricula to do so? Passing a student on to the next grade level because it would hurt his self-esteem?! Tell that to their future boss – “I should get a bonus like everyone who hit quota or it will hurt my self esteem” and see how that goes over. The rampant feeling entitlement in today’s culture begins in schools and is fostered at home by parents who don’t believe their kids ever do wrong, hold their kids unaccountable for poor performance and instead blame the schools. This academic entitlement blossoms under the disgusting idea of merit pay for teachers, standardized testing, state mandates and mainstreaming until you get back around to looking at the whole idea behind your article. There are myriad solutions to our education system and most will be painful at first but I, for one, fell like it is well worth the effort to change.

  2. angie mason says:

    Thanks, Mike. One note – I think most, when saying “post-secondary,” include trade school in that, not just four-year colleges. So maybe that’s where they can learn those skill sets for work in the trades? But you make interesting points about the need for change in many areas of education.

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