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High School Students Forced To Declare A Major

samzenpus posted more than 7 years ago | from the elementary-trade-school dept.

Education 670

i_like_spam writes "As reported in the NYTimes, high school freshmen at many high schools across the nation are now being forced to pick a major. Starting this Fall, 9th graders in Florida will have to choose to major from among a set of state-approved subjects, while some students in Mississippi will have to follow one of nine designated career paths. High school administrators hope that having students declare majors will lead to greater student interest in school until graduation. College administrators think otherwise: 'youngsters should instead concentrate on developing a broad range of critical thinking and communication skills,' says Debra Humphreys from the Association of American Colleges and Universities."

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This is stupid. (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20247455)

To expect a child to choose a career at that age is ridiculous

Re:This is stupid. (5, Funny)

SimonGhent (57578) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247477)


I'm 37 and haven't decided on a career yet... just waiting to see if these computer things catch on.

Re:This is stupid. (2, Funny)

jimstapleton (999106) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247537)


they are just a fad, like color tvs, cars, and refrigerators

damn refrigerators.

On a serious note, it would have been nice to have an actual functional major in high school, (i.e. general science, foreign languages, humanities, general studies, art), but I think that students either shouldn't have to choose a major, or if they do, make one major akin to normal high school - a general range of subjects and topics.

This is gay (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20247801)


Re:This is stupid. (3, Insightful)

Cassius Corodes (1084513) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247505)

Its seems like they are doing everything they can but fix the real underlying issues with the education system. If you don't fund it properly, it just ain't going to work.

Re:This is stupid. (5, Insightful)

YrWrstNtmr (564987) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247529)

If you don't fund it properly, it just ain't going to work.

Throwing more money at it isn't necessarily the fix needed. Some places with relatively high spending per child have the crappiest schools.

Re:This is stupid. (5, Insightful)

kimvette (919543) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247807)

Money isn't the issue.

Lowering the bar and worrying more about a child's "self esteem" rather than academics things things such as playing nanny to students AND wasting money on programs like sex education (sorry that is the job of the parents) AND sensitivity training are hurting academic performance. When teachers are expected to be nannies rather than teachers, do u rly expect students 2 xl @ math & science, & b able 2 sp34k in nything but aol sp35k? ZOMG LOL WTF!

Re:This is stupid. (1)

Ferretman (224859) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247743)

Funding really has absolutely nothing to do with it here.....they're trying to get students more interested in their futures. I don't think they're doing very well, mind you, but that's their intent.


Re:This is stupid. (-1, Flamebait)

purpledinoz (573045) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247789)

That's because the money is being used to fund a war that should have never happened in the first place. I remember when I was in grade 9, I really knew nothing about careers. It wasn't until my 3rd year of university, I finally understood this whole career thing.

Re:This is stupid. (3, Insightful)

Attila Dimedici (1036002) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247847)

"That's because the money is being used to fund a war that should have never happened in the first place" Exactly how is the Washington, DC school district spending money on this "war that should never have happened"? The Washington, DC school district spends more money per student than just about any other school in the country, yet has some of the worst results. It seems obvious to me that despite what the teachers' unions say, more money isn't the answer. Personally, I think the best thing would be smaller school districts, allowing greater accountability to individual parents. Certainly, the answer is some system allowing for greater accountability to individual parents.

Indeed (1)

Colin Smith (2679) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247509)

Even asking a child what they want to be is stupid. Hell, most of the adults I know are only just deciding what they really would like to do for the rest of their lives.

Really people generally decide what they don't want to do and that takes time, experience and trial and error... So young people should be encouraged to move between jobs and educational opportunities.

In reality this is a cost cutting measure.


The need for a well-rounded education (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20247523)

I'm concerned about the narrowm view of the world IT people and engineers
have these days. I think the problem starts at college -
There's a culture that somehow science is more rational and usefull
then the humanitities. Lecturers encourage students to joke about arts
students, and humilaite them whenever possible. This encourages
eliteism, and I for one am sick of it.

Let's tell it like it is. 'science' is just as much about opinion as
the humanities. Research simply follows the fad of the day. Take
dieticians for example. These men and woman believe that just because
they have degree in medical science that they are all knowing. Why,
what they recommend one day may kill you the next! (see the DDT story
for more information.) Science is 95% opinion then facts, lets face
it. What about astrology, the most rediculious of the sciences! But I

Another example is music. We know what sounds good. Everyone aggreed
that Valves for instance sound great. But knowitall engineers use
trensastors with inferious sound quality just to save a few bucks.
They argue with numbers. Hey, I don't want to do maths just to listen
to music. I know what I like. You cannot apply objective reasoning to
a subject which is intristically subjective. But try telling those
recent grads with their useless piece of paper that and they go all

The problem with you technical guys are that you are all so eliteist.
Whilst you want to trun collage into a trade school with yore narrow
minded views that collage should be a job training centre, humanities
are focused on making you a well rounded person who is auctually
interesting to be with, not a boring focuesed geek. Really, it makes
me so mad when people say "oh, he's doing a humanities degree, that's
easy". I have to read *3* *books* *a* *week* on average. Not picture
books either I assue you. It is a lot of work, but the upshot is
improved grammer and spelling skills that are lacking in the
technical. As for those that say "you will be working at mcdonalds" ,
I'm going on to so a PhD in socialolgy where I'll be line for tenure
where I have a much more rewarding job then beeing a science freak or
an engineer. Anyways, all I have to do to be a engineer wold be to get
my MSCE and how hard couyld that be? techincal stuff is simply
whatever fad the market thinks is hot at the moment, but all great
things were done by humanities.

You technical types are far to narrow minded and cynsical. You should
learn to enjoy life.

Peace be to god, he transcends all.

Best. Troll. Ever. (5, Funny)

aquatone282 (905179) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247633)

Nice job. That post took a lot of work.

My favorite part:

Really, it makes me so mad when people say "oh, he's doing a humanities degree, that's easy". I have to read *3* *books* *a* *week* on average. Not picture books either I assue you. It is a lot of work, but the upshot is improved grammer and spelling skills that are lacking in the technical. As for those that say "you will be working at mcdonalds" , I'm going on to so a PhD in socialolgy where I'll be line for tenure where I have a much more rewarding job then beeing a science freak or an engineer.

Again, congratulations.

Re:Best. Troll. Ever. (5, Funny)

xmarkd400x (1120317) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247833)

He puts the LOL in socialolgy

Re:The need for a well-rounded education (0)

JohnSearle (923936) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247699)

You technical types are far to narrow minded and cynsical. You should learn to enjoy life.
umm... Aren't you yourself being narrow minded here? You did a fair job of stereotyping the scientific community...

Also, before you make comments about how something improves your spelling and grammar, you should probably proofread your work. Might make your post a little less humorous.

- John

Re:The need for a well-rounded education (1)

that IT girl (864406) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247893)

Mod parent "funny", this is the most hilarious post I've read all week!
Except that my brain exploded from the horrendous spelling and grammar.

Re:This is stupid. (2, Insightful)

djones101 (1021277) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247541)

Ah, but to corporate America, this is the ideal thing. Force someone to declare a major at a young age, get them so tied to that major that switching is nigh to impossible, and then you know exactly how large your potential workforce pool is. It streamlines the hiring procedures of the big corporations.

Re:This is stupid. (4, Insightful)

XxtraLarGe (551297) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247761)

Ah, but to corporate America, this is the ideal thing.
The irony of your statement is that the place where this type of thing was most commonly practiced during the 20th century was in the Soviet Union and Eastern Bloc countries. It rings of central planning, perhaps next we'll be seeing some 5 year plans and "Great Leaps Forward"? It really isn't a surprise to see this type of thing in government run schools.

Re:This is stupid. (2, Interesting)

mwvdlee (775178) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247627)

Just for us non-americans; what age is a typical 9th grade student?

Re:This is stupid. (2, Informative)

Pensacola Tiger (538962) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247669)


Re:This is stupid. (1)

Jafafa Hots (580169) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247705)

13 or 14 if I remember correctly

Re:This is stupid. (5, Interesting)

Jafafa Hots (580169) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247645)

When I was 15 in the early 80s, a school guidance counselor was told to talk to me. Having been abandoned by my family, abused, molested, malnourished, etc... school was the least of my worries as I tried to survive and find food. Obviously my attendance suffered.

The counselor (a woman) proceeded to tell me I had better decide right away what I was going to do with my life, what my career would be. "How do you expect to support a wife and family?" she asked pointedly.

That just further reinforced my impression at the time that at best adults were clueless idiots, and at worst dangerous.

Re:This is stupid. (1)

Interl0per (1045948) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247647)

I disagree, this is simply a way to engage students as well as a reflection of the continued change in our culture and economy. I am currently attending an adult studies program and it seems that there is a strong undercurrent of successful professionals that are reinventing themselves several times throughout their careers. Certainly the age of learning a trade and plying a single skill set for life seems to be drawing to a close. Available options and demand are changing too quickly and workers of this century are having to adapt. This shouldn't be seen by observers or administrators as a vocational program but as an opportunity for students to develop patterns of thinking about how to dovetail their interests and abilities with the needs of the marketplace and maintain relevance. I would say we should, as a society, consider what pressures the emerging economy is creating on those preparing to enter the workforce; but as a practical matter the change is already here, and our future will be determined by our ability to adapt.

Re:This is stupid. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20247661)

Personally, I LOVE it when schools do things like this.
Only when people begin to realize that the public school system was created to create mindless factory workers will things begin to improve in this country. More people need to consider private schools, and more people need to homeschool.

P.S. The "captcha" for posting this message: fraught. How appropriate.

Re:This is stupid. (1)

SerpentMage (13390) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247685)

Why not?

I mean why stop at grade nine. Heck let's make them decide a major in Grade 6. Wait, that might be to late, how about Grade 1? No, wait the competition might catch on and decide earlier.

Heck why wait until you have kids. Why not decide now for my great great great grand kids. We could buy them books, and computers and get the great great great grand kids ready to meet the competition!!!!

On serious note, while I can see why you want to do this, it is not really the appropriate answer. I think if some kids want to choose paths let them, but if kids are not able to choose then let them be free souls. I know in Germany where you have to choose at such an early age what ends up happening is a multi-class society. Check the stats on professions, etc. The chances of a kid who's dad is a plumber becoming a scientist is about nil in Germany. The OECD has even critiqued Germany for not breaking down the barriers. The politicians have created a society where non-Germans remain "dumb" and un-educated while upper class Germans remain in charge of the society...

Hmmm, politicians, control, let me scratch that last opinion (as the evil plan dawns onto me)... ;)

Re:This is stupid. (1)

Ihlosi (895663) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247793)

The chances of a kid who's dad is a plumber becoming a scientist is about nil in Germany.

Then again, some guy who started out as a sales clerk managed to become Chancellor.

Re:This is stupid. (1)

mulvane (692631) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247727)

Highschool I always thought was about critical thinking, developing ideas, and learning about ones self. This is forcing someone to pick a path that may not be them at an early age and possibly what they may not truly want because it will keep them away from things they would otherwise experience. This is a bad idea and I am someone who graduated from Florida. This is a way to make a child pick something, get burnt out on it and burnt out the rest of the time they are institutionalized there.

Re:This is stupid. (1)

dashyaoo (1143463) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247803)

that's very good :)

Re:This is stupid. (1)

that IT girl (864406) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247827)

Absolutely! Most people don't figure out what they want to do until they've been in college for a while. Isn't that what those useless gen-ed classes are for? First-year credits to go towards whatever you eventually choose? I know I changed majors three times and because of that am having to go to school longer, but it's worth it because I like the path I'm taking now. It wasn't my first choice and it wasn't what I would have picked in high school. But I'm glad I wasn't forced to decide when I was young and silly and more worried about my prom dress than how I was going to make my living for the next 50 years.

With top down decisions like this (4, Insightful)

Colin Smith (2679) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247461)

You can make everyone go in the wrong direction all at once. For decades.


Re:With top down decisions like this (2, Interesting)

obergfellja (947995) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247591)

heck, about 10 years ago, when I was a freshman in high school, I had no clue what I wanted to do with my life. I knew that college was the path that I wanted. But knowing which major i wanted? For crying out loud!

By the time I was done with high school, I had a clue to which major to declare. Now, I have successfully landed my first career position within the Software Development field because of it.

I say, Don't force students to decide @ 14-15, but open their worlds to new ideas. Give them a chance to view new ideas. Let them explore themselves (not talking about sexual but mental). I say by their final semester, they should have a Declaration and/or a well developed paper on their findings to their college/career path. Give them the sense that they must start developing their path to graduation (and beyond) at Freshman year (high school). To unwillingly force someone at such a tender age will provide terrible results in wich these kids will not know if this is the perfect fit for them.

Re:With top down decisions like this (5, Insightful)

TheSciBoy (1050166) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247609)

As I understand it, High School is part of what we in Sweden call "grundskolan", which is required here. It is illegal not to attend school up to this point. After that, everything is elective. To specialize so early reeks of desperation. Up until this point, kids are kids. They need to be told what to do and when to do it. Of course they need free time, but at this age school is for two things: learning basic "booksmart" skills to make it in life (math, reading, writing, how the government works) and human interaction. The human interaction part is recess and after school, during class they need to be told what to do and everyone needs the same stuff.

After you've attained the minimum level (lvl 1, 10,000xp) where you're able to function in society, you can choose where you want to go in life: directly to work (McDonalds, cleaning, aso) or you can get a higher education in some area of your interest.

Specializing earlier and earlier has become common these days. This appears when schools start competing for students. Generally I think this is a bad thing. Mostly because this means that you have to decide what you want to be/do when you really have no idea and really shouldn't be making life-altering decisions like this.

Anyone who has chosen College (or University) programs based on "what will be in demand" when you're finished will have chosen wrong. The world changes so fast that choosing what you are going to work with in 5-10 years based on what is in demand now will almost invariably mean that things have changed and you will find yourself in tough competition. It is generally better just to choose what to do based on what you want to do and hope for the best. At least then you'll be competing with others in a field you love.

Re:With top down decisions like this (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20247729)

To clarify, this is one of the major shortcomings of a state-run education system. Instead of parents choosing for themselves how to educate their children, they will be subject to a one-size-fits-all solution where conformity is the rule and individual choice is the exception. This applies to the entire system, from preference of school, to preference of curriculum, to preference of moral values, political values -- right down to the fundamental choice of how much time to spend on formal education, and indeed, whether to engage in formal education at all.

No, this isn't an argument for or against government education -- this is simply an observation of reality. By its own definition, any top-down, centralized system will be subject to the policies of those at the top.

tp! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20247479)

third post!

Mixed (5, Insightful)

MyLongNickName (822545) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247481)

On one hand, I hate the idea of anything that "pigeon holes" students.

On the other hand, I hate the concept that all students must be prepared for college. A lot of people just aren't cut out for it. Some are looking for blue collar careers, and would be better served by programs that prepare them for this vocation.

Combine this with kids who are at risk of dropping out of school. I see a lot of this. Some areas have a higher than 50% drop out rates. If you can take these kids and show them that when they are done with high school, they will be ready for a job as an electrician, a plumber or a mechanic, they'd be more likely to stay in. Tell them that they need to have 4 semesters of English, two of history, and they will be required to take some arts classes, and their reward will be two years of post-secondary trade school, and then they might get a job... well, some back grounds just don't value the education enough.

I see downsides to the "track" approach, but I see upsides as well.

Re:Mixed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20247603)

We have those already, they are tech schools. I went to one. I'd guess that more than half of the people I knew that went to one aren't working in the field they chose in 9th grade. This might not be the norm, I have no studies of any kind to show if this is or not.

Re:Mixed (1)

SCHecklerX (229973) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247607)

But, this is already taken care of.

We actually 'declared' majors in high school in the 80's. You were either 'academic' or 'vo-tech'. The 'techers went to their respective trade schools for certain days of the week. Academics could, to an extent, choose which classes they would take and how far they would go (not everyone got to calculus, for example).

So what is wrong with that model?

Re:Mixed (4, Insightful)

eggoeater (704775) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247643)

No I haven't read TFA but I'm willing to bet some of the majors are the equivalent of metal shop.

Actually I see many downsides....
I was interested in CS all through high school and took every programming course (all was the mid-80s) that my school had to offer. But I also marched in the band.
What if this new major program prevented (via scheduling, resource, and location conflicts) the students ability to be engaged in multiple interests?
If I were back in high school and confronted with this, I probably would have chosen band over CS courses simply because that was where all my friends were.

Re:Mixed (1)

Damastus the WizLiz (935648) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247649)

I have to say My high school had a decent program to deal with this situation. It was a large high school that also had a diverse Vocational school program. Students could take high level college prep courses or take vocational courses in things like Forestry, Mechanics, or even cooking. Many students choose to take vocational and college prep courses. I think it is ok to give students the option to select a major, making a it a requirement will only hurt them in the end. Kids need the freedom to change their minds. Making sure they have a good foundation for any career path is essential.

Re:Mixed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20247799)

I agree on tagging students as "types" of students

High schools are perfectly capable of achieving education for everyone without "majors". We had lots of programs in our high school that allowed students that wanted to pursue trade skills to attend tradeskill classes in place of standard classes. But it was never a "major" and you could move in or out of those classes as you wanted. High school is a place to hone your interests in preperation for whatever you choose to do next. Some choose tradeskills, some choose college, some choose neither.

To suppose that you can determine for someone in the ninth grade what "type" of life options they should be prepared for is ridiculous and arrogant. This is searching for a way to seem "proactive" and "visionary" without any real thought given.

Re:Mixed (1)

fermion (181285) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247831)

One interpretation is that the purpose of education is to provide choices, and in order to make a choice students must be aware that choices exist. A second idea, in this world where kids are raised to do only the things that satisfy their immediate impulses, is to provide a context for the learning o the students will be willing to learn.

To address specific parent points. First, colleges know nothing of the stuggles of high school. They generally allow a select group, and then get rid of those that won't play ball. Reputable colleges will underselect, that is reject qualified candidates, so thay are not accused of taking money.

Second, drop out occur for many reasons. One is that the kids sees no use for the education, and there are no interesting courses. If the schools provide a context for the high school experience, and provides courses to back them up, then drop out rates might fall. These choices has to go beyond trade, as that just limits choice. Some kids drop out because there are no advanced academics. Even if all the kid wants is a trade, a school at least have the responsibility to offer the alternative choices.

If done properly, these kids are going to be better prepared for any career of college. These kids will have thier core courses, plus experiential electives in which to learn new content and apply cross curricular skills. I know that some high schools will use this to limit or pigeonhole the studetns, but those are the schools that would not provide a broad educational experience under any scenario.

Here is the thing. Public college prep high schools have generally been thematic. One can chooses a high school based on interest in art, science, engineering, etc. It works to increase the rigour, that is provides a compensation for the additional pain the students are going to be expected to endure. We don't to cargo cult this concept, but there are pieces that might apply to other situations.

In any case, the bottom line is choice. Perhaps the students just want to get out of high school and work retail. Perhap the student has a genuine talent for something else. Even if the student ends up in retail, and I have seen this, and it is fine, at least someone has told the student they have a choice.

Maybe... (4, Insightful)

Jaqenn (996058) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247493)

When I was in college, I had no difficulties picking a major: Computer Science. I wanted Computer Science since I played video games at the age of 3.

I had a roommate who couldn't decide on a major, and in fact didn't have one until around his Junior Year

Some people know what they want to do when they turn 14, some people don't. I do not see the value of making the people who don't pick one anyway.

Re:Maybe... (1)

MyLongNickName (822545) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247527)

This is a lot different that college majors. This is a general career path despite the terminology of the article. I don't see anything that indicates you cannot change your mind, though I imagine there would be some catching up to do.

I think this is more like "mechanic" versus "engineer" versus "artist". There would be a different emphasis on the types of classes being taken. The engineer would have heavier math than the mechanic than the artist.

Umm... (5, Insightful)

mercurium (1051806) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247495)

College students changes majors like they change their socks, what makes them think high school students can stick their guns?

Re:Umm... (5, Funny)

Hognoxious (631665) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247653)

College students changes majors like they change their socks
You mean twice in four years?

Counterproductive and damaging (5, Informative)

znode (647753) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247503)

This is not only useless, but potentially damaging to the children's careers.

As Paul Graham says,

[blockquote]If I were back in high school and someone asked about my plans, I'd say that my first priority was to learn what the options were... there are other jobs you can't learn about, because no one is doing them yet. Most of the work I've done in the last ten years didn't exist when I was in high school... In such a world it's not a good idea to have fixed plans.[/blockquote]

Now Bobby! (1, Funny)

lottameez (816335) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247507)

You said you wanted to be a marine biologist! Now go up to your room and dissect that shark! What else are you going to do with your life? Sales?

Definitley too early (2, Insightful)

the_crowing (992960) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247515)

I highly agree with the college administrators on this one. Grade 9 is way to early to decide a career. High school is what exposes students wide range of subjects so that they can go from there. Honestly, how much does one learn about physics, chemistry, computer science, law, etc. in middle school? Certainly not enough to make a decision that will bind them to a particular field of study for the rest of their lives.

This. Is. So. Dumb. (4, Insightful)

dwm (151474) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247517)

First of all, I believe you really don't know what you want to do until you get (at least) a couple of years of college under your belt. Sometimes you get lucky and guess correctly before then, but most folks just aren't mature enough or have enough life experience to be able to tell what you will enjoy doing. Yes, I understand there are exceptions to this on both ends of the spectrum; I'm talking averages here.

Second, the college folks are right on about needing a broader focus. As it is, students are too quick to dismiss fields of learning that they don't see as relevant to their interests. Sadly, most folks realize only after they leave school that the purpose of school at nearly all levels is not so much to teach you certain subjects, but to teach you how to learn.

Re:This. Is. So. Dumb. (1)

Solra Bizna (716281) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247691)

First of all, I believe you really don't know what you want to do until you get (at least) a couple of years of college under your belt. Sometimes you get lucky and guess correctly before then, but most folks just aren't mature enough or have enough life experience to be able to tell what you will enjoy doing.

I've known I was going to be spending my life working in the field of computers longer than I've known how to walk. Clearly you don't know what you're--

Yes, I understand there are exceptions to this on both ends of the spectrum; I'm talking averages here.

Gwah! @_@

...This goes to show that you should not start writing a reply until you've read the comment you're replying to. :P


WTH? (1)

ack154 (591432) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247519)

I've been out of college for nearly 4 yrs now and I STILL don't know what I want to major in. How can they expect a 9th grader to just choose what he might want to do with the rest of his life? I think I went through 3 or 4 completely different ideas in that 4 yr span of high school.

How dumb...

Social Networking 101 (1, Insightful)

packetmon (977047) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247521)

Nice, give them 9 choices you pre-define on what you want them to be and hope they don't become miserable drones. That's a nice method of control wouldn't you say? Your choices are Doctor, Policeman, Teacher, Politician, Lawyer, Fireman, Veterinarian, Astronaut, Homemaker... Pick now or you'll fall behind Timmy. What happened to freedom of choice. What happens when a student - typical 14 years old at the time is being handed some career and having those studies shoved down his throat only to find out later... "Gee I don't want to be a fireman... I should have studied something else!". Off to the welfare office for little Timmy thanks to his teachers shoving their shit down his throat and making up his mind for him. I say, teach the core studies you've taught and offer an array of information a child can choose from. Not what you dictate. Is this the US or pre Cold War Russia?

Re:Social Networking 101 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20247657)

Your choices are Doctor, Policeman, Teacher, Politician, Lawyer, Fireman, Veterinarian, Astronaut, Homemaker... Pick now or you'll fall behind Timmy.
My school had "businessman's son, lawyer, corporate suck-up, taxi driver, soldier, burger flipper, gigilo, beach bum, derelict".

Re:Social Networking 101 (1)

potaz (211754) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247667)

Dude everyone's gonna choose Astronaut

Re:Social Networking 101 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20247679)

Hmm... didn't they do an episode of The Simpsons based on this? Martin got his prayers, "Systems Analyst," Lisa got stuck with Homemaker (and decided to take the hidden career option of Criminal) and Bart got Policeman.

The fact of the matter is though, public school has always been about turning people into drones. It's just that up until recently, it was assumed that most of the people coming out of the public school system would be assembly line factory workers, now it's assumed they'll either get service jobs or be unemployable.

When I was at school, the "bell" was this loud, jarring siren. A horrible sound that signalled it was time to move to the next room... near the end they replaced it with chimes. I think the original sound reminded me of the factory whistle as seen in old cartoons.

Schools train kids in enduring boredom and in obedience to authority. Most of the other educating that they do is incidental and mainly based on the motivation of the student and his parents. For example, it's quite possible to be a C student and not learn a significant amount of math or science, just drift through the classes. Public School is really something to be overcome.

If you want a decent future for your kid, a good, private school will serve you much better.

HA HA HA! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20247561)

lol Amerikkkan "education"

Bad Thing (4, Insightful)

Max Romantschuk (132276) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247569)

My (Finnish equivalent to) high school focused all-round education. It was the best decision I ever made to study there. I've studied languages (Swedish, Finnish, English, French, German), the arts, philosophy, history, psychology, biology, math, physics, chemistry... The works.

And guess what? After learning the basics of pretty much everything (much at least) I'm damn sure I have a good base of general knowledge for the rest of my career, and life for that matter. When I need to pick something up I always have a place to start.

Had I been forced to focus on just a few subjects I would probably be a lot worse of in today's ever-evolving business world.

Florida always tries gimmicks like this (3, Interesting)

Jafafa Hots (580169) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247575)

I have 4 nieces in schools in Florida. They have the FCATs here, and everything is based around schools ratings with those tests. It's been ridiculous, the kids' educations in broad areas being sacrificed to "teaching to the test."
The obsession with the FCATs is insane. Everything in the schools revolves around them. Some administrators in one school even "anointed" kids' desks before the test with holy oil, hoping for higher scores.

I see this as just another attempt to do that - all of the "majors" will certainly be things the FCATs focus on. This is just another way to raise artificial indicators of the success of the schools at the expense of a real education.

Re:Florida always tries gimmicks like this (1)

grommit (97148) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247849)

Agreed, I live in Florida as well and when my daughter graduates from high school, she will have learned how to take FCAT tests and unfortunately not much else.

Ridiculous (1)

Deathless Durin (1139823) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247583)

I can't believe they actually expect 9th grade students to be able to decide what they want to do later in life..... It's completely absurd! I mean, when I was in 9th grade I knew that I was going to go to college, but I had really no idea what I wanted to do.

As to giving them a greater interest in school...that's a load of hogwash. Students who don't like school anyways are not going to enjoy it anymore if you force them to pick a career path, and make them stick to it through school. The way to get more students interested is to get them more involved in the classes they already have. If they're still not interested, the school and the parents need to work together to help the them work in a "specific field" isn't going to make it more interesting for them.

Of course, there would be a few students that this would help, but there'll be a lot more that it wouldn't...

Sounds like a good idea! (3, Interesting)

ErichTheRed (39327) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247593)

Isn't it the case that other countries force their students to pick a career path beginning in high school? I thought this was how other countries, especially the Indian and Chinese government, were able to turn out so many engineers/ narrowing the focus of education early on.

I agree with the idea that students shouldn't be all lumped into the same category. If you're destined to be a scientist, why spend half your high school career studying unrelated subjects? Cram all the knowledge in now, while your brain still has a huge memory capacity. That way, college is reserved for deeper study of a subject, not review of stuff you should have learned in high school.

Also, high school curricula are pretty much aimed at the lowest common denominator. It makes sense to separate those who are interested in learning from those who are interested in using up oxygen. Ever wonder why college degrees are almost required for any corporate job? Because high school doesn't give you enough preparation to do a "real world" job. This would also prevent people from being forced through college who otherwise don't need it. There are very few non-menial jobs you can get anymore without a degree, and some people, while qualified for a job, are not suited for advanced study.

Re:Sounds like a good idea! (2, Interesting)

Zelos (1050172) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247671)

Yes, that's pretty much how it works in the UK: you do ~10 subjects to GCSE level (age 16), then narrow down to 3-4 at A-level (16-18). I believe that is broadening out a little now, though.

I always wanted to be a scientist/engineer, so I only did Maths, Physics and Chemistry at A-level. I'm still interested in English, History, foreign languages etc., but I would have hated being forced to study them 16-18.

If you think is is bad, just wait for... (1)

heretic108 (454817) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247599)

"Congratulations Mr and Mrs Jones, your 6-month foetal scans have been analysed. Your daughter is doing just fine, good health, no abnormalities. Her brain scans indicate she would be well suited for a career in law, so you might want to get your application in to the Legal Eagles Day Care Center. They have good play programs there, and their reference will help your daughter get the best chance for acceptance at Juris Elementary School. Don't delay, competition is fierce!"

Re:If you think is is bad, just wait for... (1)

mwvdlee (775178) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247857)

I can just imagine the legal battles these toddlers will have to fight in order to decide who gets to play with what toy.

Prepare for the real world (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20247631)

Major in failure.

If you intend to fail and succeed, which have you done?

Limited choices... (3, Insightful)

realsilly (186931) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247635)

You've got to be kidding me! Is this an ad for the Sally Struther's college degree commercials? If a ninth grader is considered too young for sexual activity, which affects them for the rest of their lives, how in gods name can they be expected to know what major is right for them. Most students don't really find their way until they've gone through high school and teachers help inspire them to look towards a higer education.

Isn't this similar to a communist attitude? Note I said similar, not actual communism.

In the country where Freedom is our motto, we are starting to see less and less freedoms. /sigh GG Florida, and I went to school there, I can say this.

Re:Limited choices... (1)

mwvdlee (775178) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247879)

At that age, you can be assured their career choices will be driven by hormones primarily.

Basic Majors people... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20247673)

They do this where I am in New York already. Not really news, and its not like a major in College. Usually a more basic major like art, math, or science.

Doesn't sound like a good thing (1)

Mike1024 (184871) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247677)

Michael A. Polizzi, an assistant superintendent, said the district carefully researched future demand for jobs, examined college programs and surveyed students about their interests before settling on its first six majors: sports management, fine and performing arts, health sciences, international studies and global commerce, communications and new media and or liberal arts.
I think I would have difficulty choosing a subject to specialise in at age 14, not just because I would be 14, but also because those options frankly sound like bullshit.

On the other hand, the school, Dwight Morrow High School [] , shares its campus with "Academies@Englewood":

"With more than 400 high-achieving students enrolled, the program --housed in its own building on the Dwight Morrow campus -- offers concentrations in engineering, law and public safety, biomedicine, finance, and information systems."
I have to say, I would rather be in the high-achievers school with the decent subjects than the low-achievers school on the same campus which has such a poor selection of subjects.

Just my $0.02.

Industry influenced (1)

Capt James McCarthy (860294) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247681)

I guess Walmart, McDonalds, and the like are adding classes that teach proper greeting methods, technical aspects of french fries, and different layouts of cash registers.

For us foreigners... (1)

91degrees (207121) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247689)

What age is 9th grade?

Re:For us foreigners... (1)

YrWrstNtmr (564987) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247703)

What age is 9th grade?


Alternatives (1)

the Dragonweaver (460267) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247695)

The more I see of high school, the more I want to homeschool.

And I don't really want to homeschool, but if stupid stuff like this goes on...

Bright Future (1)

ShawnCplus (1083617) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247711)

I'm not sure what the problem is, in 20 years with this system we will have a country filled with firemen, doctors, lawyers and veterinarians. Sure, the trash will be heaping around town without garbage men and the hospitals will be filthy without janitors.

How to teach success? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20247715)

I know a girl who was awarded a scholarship by a an organization of prominent successful women in the area. One thing that all of these successful women had in common was that they had all changed careers.
Is this true for men? (it was for me).
How to best prepare a high school child to be successful? It seems that limiting the breadth of the curriculum in favor of depth would handicap a child who wants to change paths.

Or maybe we should just measure success by happiness and not in dollars.

What difference does it make? (1)

Mr_Icon (124425) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247717)

Look around you and count the percentage of people who are actually working in the same field as their college degree. I honestly doubt that this percentage will be affected much by requiring the students to make a decision when they are 17 instead of when they are 19. I mean, seriously -- how many people in their 30s would trust their own judgment made in late teens?

In fact, in many other countries you have to make a choice by the time you're applying to the university. Shifting it by 2 years doesn't make much difference, if any at all.

I choose... (1)

Trentus (1017602) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247723)

C major!

Nice and easy. No sharps or flats.

Our school (1)

Andares (921628) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247731)

Our school has implemented this with the hope of dividing the school into a bunch of "career academies." The idea is that this will make the students feel closer to each other and keep them from alienation. I hate the idea personally, but luckily I missed the year cutoff so I don't have to deal with it. Of course I won't have a shiny sticker on my high school diploma, but I doubt any of the colleges will care. You have kids fresh out of eighth grade deciding what to do with the rest of their lives, with no margin for change of mind. It won't work.

This is what we did in the UK at age 14... (5, Insightful)

spiney (28277) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247733)

As a transplant from the UK to the US, with high school/college age kids, I think it's about time that we stopped mollycoddling and pandering to the kids here, and started getting them thinking that they cannot just drift through high school and college, they need a direction, which making a choice starts to prepare them for.

When I was at school in the UK in the early 1980's, at age 14 we had to narrow our courses to about eight subjects in total (English, Maths and a couple of others mandatory, leaving quite a bit of choice) and we studied for national exams ("O" levels) at age 16. We then chose three or four subjects usually from the eight, to take to an advanced level ("A" level), leading to national exams at the age of 18. When it cam to university time, there was no such thing as this "undeclared major" rubbish that my son is doing at an American university starting this fall. Our university admission was into a particular course, based on prerequisite courses at "A" level at required grades. This allowed the universities to know the minimum level and rely on the expected knowledge of all the students in a given course, and there was no need for foundation years, or spending the first term or two catching everyone up. This is why we could have three year Bachelor's courses instead of the four year ones here in the US.

Today's kids are not being properly prepared for the work environment. I've lost count of the number of confident, self assured, broadly educated US Bachelors or Masters graduates I have interviewed for jobs in electronics who don't understand Ohm's Law or basic op-amp theory after graduating from between four and six years of study. It's time to stop the madness, and start preparing the kids for the new world, where they are competing against low wage earning graduates based in India or China, and if you think the UK system was harsh in making people choose, you should see the focus and emphasis on academics and career preparation in Asia...

Different kind of people (1)

mwvdlee (775178) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247735)

Decissions like these are made by people who have not pride in their work or care at all about the work itself but only the status and wealth that it brings. To them, the exact nature of the work is irrelevant. If they can become famous and rich hauling garbage, they will. They do not understand that the majority of people DO want a profession where the tasks meets their personal interrests, and since watching porn all day isn't a job, they'll usually need some time to figure out what they like doing and what professions enable them to do that.

Ridiculously stupid (1)

RESPAWN (153636) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247749)

This is ridiculous. To ask a child at that age to make an educational decision that could affect his career track is just downright asinine. Hell, I didn't know what subject I wanted to major in four years later when I went to college -- after experiencing a full four years of high school and taking a wide variety of subjects while there. Frankly, I think that even asking high school seniors to try to decide what they want to do for a living is a little foolish. I know many people my age (26) who still haven't decided on a career track and are still going back to school in order to gain new knowledge in the hopes that they will be able to decide on a career that they do like.

I know that I, for one, would have loved to take a year or two off after high school to work and explore my interests. It would have been nice to have the time to develop new skills before I went to college to further my education. And I would have done so, were it not for my scholarship. Alas, it is very hard to get a scholarship at or even to gain entry to a good university as a freshman if you don't do it directly after high school. This is a problem born of the steep post-secondary education costs in our country. I for one wouldn't have had the funds go attend the university I attended were it not for the scholarship, and the same goes for most universities. Unfortunately, I can think of no way to rectify this other than to increase the quality of our educational system from the bottom up. Pay the friggin' teachers more - they deserve it. Lower the costs of tuition at public universities each year instead of raising them - our children deserve every opportunity they can get to obtain a college education; especially in this day and age where more and more jobs list a bachelor's degree as a basic qualification.

I wish more people would understand that an investment in our children's education now is equivalent to an investment in the future well being of our country. Then again, we're talking about a country where financial investors demand to see short term profits and damn the long term longevity of the company. It appears that some people wish to apply the same sort of thinking to our educational system, and this saddens me. Reorganizing school curriculum to force high school students to declare a major is comparable to a corporate reorganization to more narrowly focus a product line. Both are signs that the organization is in trouble and neither situation points to a good future for the organization and its citizens.

I hope these schools drop this nonsense and attempt to concentrate on the root of the problem - under funding most likely - instead of trying to apply short term solutions to a long term problem.

Think and Communicate? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20247751)

Allow students to learn to think and communicate, the colleges surely jest, public schools were set up to prevent that from happening as much as possible and students are punished for such abhorent behaviour. Instead they must be prepared for real life duties to their employer, government and society. In short they have to learn to think and do as we tell them while believing this is the right thing to do and they will remain happy when we give them their gold stars.

Bah, colleges and universities have long since gotten away from real education too. Perhaps they are afraid that high schools will now replace them as job trainers, a movement that has been going for a while now as many high schools work with local industry to "prepare the student for the workplace with skills that the local job market needs". If a child learns at an early age how to learn and how to think and gets a good strong general education they can continue to learn in areas that interest them on their own. Picking a specialization that early has a strong chance of being the wrong choice for the person and have to wonder if many will be "guided" into those choices due to government or corporate influence. Many even chose to change careers after going to graduate school in another area. What the kids really need is to be allowed to learn to think and the time to do it and make observations of the world while having some fun before they join us in our Dilbert world.

Bad Idea for Democratic Republics (1)

MBraynard (653724) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247753)

If they can't teach your kid basic MATHS, how the hell are they going to teach them architecture?

HSers still need a broader education. It is necessary for a democratic republic for them to be able to reason and be well literate and to have strong math, reading, and writing skills, along with science.

In a totaltarion state - well, none of that is necessary. So this career-curriculim in HS is ok for them.

The IB [] program is an ideal these schools need to reach for.

Prepared for the Future! (1)

BillGatesLoveChild (1046184) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247755)

> high school freshmen at many high schools across the nation are now being forced to pick a major

It makes a lot of sense. Only rich kids can afford to go to college and spend several years screwing around while they figure what they want to do. Much better if we get clear in these kids minds what their options are. It saves everyone time: Subjects on offer are infantry, artillery, bomb disposal or Mitt Romney internships. Any a great way for young people to serve!

Nice (1)

jayhawk88 (160512) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247769)

Doctor: Here's your scientifically selected career.
Kid1: Architect!
Kid2: Insurance Salesman.
Ralph: Salmon gutter?
Milhouse: Military strongman!
Martin: Systems analyst....Systems analyst....Systems analyst...
Doctor: Systems analyst!
Martin: All right!

Is it exciting or disturbing that real life seems to become more like The Simpsons every day?

Been that way in Vo-Tech high schools for years... (1)

Ellis D. Tripp (755736) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247773)

I attended a Vo-Tech HS in the early-mid '80s, and students were required to choose a major at the end of their freshman year, after a series of 6-week "exploratory" classes to give exposure to various career areas. I already knew what area I wanted to pursue (electronics), but also got exposure to areas from auto repair to graphic arts, in addition to all the standard HS curriculum.

Upon leaving HS, you received a standard HS diploma, along with the equivalent of an associate's degree in your chosen technical area. Many graduates went right into the job market, but some of us (myself included) went on to college/university, where we were that much more secure in our chosen major (mine was EE), where we had much more practical, hands-on experience that most of the students who came out of ordinary high schools. I now work for a university, doing design/prototyping of instrumentation for scientific research.

Quite common in other countries (1)

PseudoLogic (863516) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247787)

Echoing other comments, my first impression was "WHAT? Most people don't know what they want to be at that age!" but on further reflection it's quite similar to what I went through. Though born american, I grew up in Spain (that small country over there) and went to a spanish High School. Our second year of HS we had to decide between 4 choices: Letras (literally Letters, equivalent to Humanities) both pure and mixed (with Sciences), and Ciencias (Sciences), pure and mixed. All tracks had common classes to help develop a varied background (Latin, Philosophy, etc.) while still channeling the interests of the student.

Students Confused by options (5, Funny)

chinard (555270) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247805)

Many accidently selected Pat Buchanan as their major.

Simplier Times... (1)

orionop (1139819) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247809)

From the Article...

"When we went to high school, we majored in boys,"
I just wish we could all just go back to the well rounded American education in one simple gender. These kids have to be kids while they can; then decide to learn about more genders when they are good and ready.

Putting the cart before the horse (1)

xednieht (1117791) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247815)

Many college students are not sure yet of what they want to become, how are kids even younger going to make a choice like this, if they even should.

How can you choose what you want to be when you don't even know yourself yet. At that age kids are still living in the shadows of their parents, and do what their parents tell them to do. They have not yet discovered what they like, what they are good at, what makes them get up in the morning.

Perhaps a better idea would be to invest the money in improving the existing programs in the hard sciences, along with reading, writing, and arithmetic the foundation of all professions. Then as students begin the process of self discovery they will be prepared regardless of what profession they ultimately choose.

High School students should NOT be given a choice, rather they should be told what to do, and disciplined to achieve good results.

On the right track..... (1)

zerus (108592) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247817)

Think back to grade school. You're sitting there taking a course that you didn't want to take but had to because the school chose it for you. You have no freedom of choice. I'm all for core curriculum as in math, science, language, and social studies, which is primarily what your first year of college is spent doing anyway. It does make you more balanced and gives a reasonable baseline. Students involved in AP or gifted programs have more options to study what they want, but it's those kids who aren't that need something to work towards. If you're interested in science and math, you have a science curriculum, if you're interested in business, then you have a mixture of economics and social studies. The idea of having targeted paths for students is great, in my opinion. For students that may change their minds, make the "major" be more like a minor. You take so many science classes for a science concentration, etc, while the core classes make up the real "major." In this case, the school seems to be making this a bit harder than it needs to be, but I think they're on the right track at least. High school is bad enough, so let the kids at least take classes that they want.

Solid Foundation (1)

Blitz22 (1122015) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247819)

As people move up the academic chain, they focus on their chosen area of study and learn more and more about less and less. (eventually knowing everything about nothing?) To do so, they start out with a broad base, learning at least something about everything, then deciding what interest them. How is someone supposed to decide on a major when they haven't any idea what's out there? Isn't that what high school is for? And even if someone already knows what they want, wouldn't we rather have individuals who are able to converse about things other than just their job? I don't like it; education should be more like a pyramid than an obelisk.

We chose a Major (1)

esconsult1 (203878) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247837)

In my high school back in Jamaica, we all did the broad subjects until around 9th grade. Then by 10th and 11th grade (4th to 5th form there), we either chose majors, or one was foisted upon us.

For me that was a good thing. I did not chose, but I was recognized as having a good technical aptitude (based on grades), so I was sent to Tech. Tech involved Electronics, Metal Shop, Wood Shop, Technical Drafting, more Advanced Math, Biology and basic physics. Of course we also still did all the standard courses such as geography, religious sciences, literature and english (yes, different). But the courses that were double sessions were tech.

Now looking back at all my friends, it seemed that we did not have an issue with choosing careers. I bumped into a guy who was into tech a few weeks ago, and surprise! He was a tech at one of the local cellphone companies, many of my friends who were into science are now in the medical fields. And the guys who went into arts and business also tended to gravitate to those fields.

I think it definitely helped. Of course in those days (late 70's) we had excellent teachers who could get you into the right area. Teachers make a lot of difference in those situations.

I dropped out of college and went to work, but that was for other reasons. So these days, I'm hiring guys who thought they knew what they were doing when the majored in psychology in college, but turned out to be super programmers. And I'm dismissing CS majors who went into their fields and were lousy developers.

No doubt in my mind that at around 15 years old, it makes sense to help nudge the student into the general direction where they show aptitude best.

Part sympathise, but.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20247841)

The reason why I feel sympathy is that I believe in offering children choices. It's my view that few children are given any choice at all that they feel in any way will affect their long-term position, and so any choice taken is always with a mental horison of about two days or the next party. This kills involvement, motivation, attachment and focus.

That's not to say you should actually _let them decide_ their long-term position at the age of 14 - you can offer choices that, while they feel big at the time, are ultimately mostly irrelevant.

As such, I sympathise with the programme, and my own country has a similar choice of programme focus only at the age of 16 (or rather 15, as you need to apply the year before you start) for a long time and there have been neither complaints nor attempts to change it. I would also like to know exactly how much common content there is between courses - acid test being e.g. whether someone studying Sports Management but having the motivation to would have any chance at all at going to college for Management with Accounting or vica versa. 14 still feels a bit early however.

Even college student's change their minds (1)

Edgester (105351) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247851)

A significant chunk of college freshmen enter as "undecided" majors. I vaguely recall that something like one-third of all college students change majors at least once. If college students don't even know what they want to do, how can you expect high-school kids to know. Give them interesting electives and concentrations or magnet schools, but don't lock people into "majors".

Not necessarily a big deal (1)

SirGarlon (845873) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247865)

The headline of TFA is polemical - "forced to" pick a major. However there is little detail about what the choice of major will actually mean. What opportunities will it open for students and what will it close? This may not amount to much from a student's point of view. I went to high school in the mid-1980s and my school had majors. In order to take Advanced Placement English you had to major in English. In order to take AP calculus you had to major in math. In order to take sculpture you had to major in art. So I triple-majored in English, Math, and Art (actually, science also but that didn't affect my study options). It was perfectly feasible. I think I had less study hall than some other kids because I took art classes instead, and that was about it. So really majors do not need to "track" or constrain the students. (Now I admit if I had wanted to major in metalworking and home economics simultaneously, that might not have been possible because the classes were at the same time.) Looking back, I think the reason for majors at my school was that there was limited funding for the advanced classes and they wanted some token commitment from the students in order to enroll them. It helps make planning easier - if you have 60 freshmen majoring in science, then you can predict that 4 years from now you'll need 60 or fewer seats in the senior-level physics class.

What is education for? (1)

Colin Smith (2679) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247881)

Is it's purpose to train kids to pass exams or is it's purpose to inform them about the world?

If exams are the purpose, you get this kind of crap where kids are taught to pass a test and nothing else.


Damn Straight (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20247887)

'youngsters should instead concentrate on developing a broad range of critical thinking and communication skills,'

Heheh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#20247889)

College administrators think otherwise: 'youngsters should instead concentrate on developing a broad range of critical thinking and communication skills,' says Debra Humphreys from the Association of American Colleges and Universities."

Because everybody knows we're not going to teach them critical thinking or communication in college, it's going to be the same old regurgitating facts for a piece of paper that goes on in high school.

So there will be a lot more... (1)

Sunrise2600 (1142529) | more than 7 years ago | (#20247891)

Since kids have to pick what they want to be at an early age maybe now we will have a lot more astronauts and firemen. Not sure what girls might pick maybe actress or singer? To bad they can't pick those...
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