We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Gov. Paul LePage said Wednesday he will propose a bill in the next legislative session that will require school districts to pay for their graduates’ remedial courses in college. LePage cited the number of college students who need remedial classes as evidence of the ways Maine’s education system is failing students and taxpayers. Fifty-four percent of students entering the Maine Community College System need to re-learn basic skills, as do 20 to 25 percent of students at the state’s four-year universities, LePage said. “The parents of this state pay taxes for public education, then they have to pay a second time when their kids enter college.”
That's "higher ed" these days. My question would be "Why are these kids accepted at community colleges if they lack required skills?" (We all know it's all about warm bodies and the money.) I think the Gov. has it backwards, but it is a clever political ploy.
I'm with Charles Murray in thinking that around 5% of kids are "ready" for serious higher ed, unless that "higher ed" means job training. It's all about Insty's College Bubble. Except for the most competitive schools, I think community colleges and most colleges are the new High Schools. Honestly, you would not believe the ignorance and intellectual incompetence of college grads that I have interviewed in recent years.
We have to face the fact that "higher ed" is a government-sponsored industry, just like GM and Solydra, churning out stuff that nobody really needs.
How can our children be ready for "serious higher ed" when they're not serious? How many times do we have to be reminded that a fifteen year old girl cannot raise a child properly on her own? One other serious flaw in the thinking of academics and others is that the trades and job training is the salvation for those who can't handle "higher ed." The assumption that the trades or job training provides a fall-back or default position is an enormous mistake. There is no assurance that young people who can't "do" college have the aptitude for success in the trades. Caterpillar manuals are written at the 14th grade reading level, HVAC/R texts are often written at the 12th grade reading level, and our newspapers are often written at the 6th grade reading level.
After the President, governors, and administrators have suggested a fix for education, the teachers are then expected to make it all work. We all are the same, aren't we? No, actually, we're not!
Community colleges are not "higher ed" in the sense of university or four year college. They are post-high school education for kids with deficiencies in their education, which makes teaching them even more of a challenge than teaching the dolts who get admitted to four year schools. I've known a few cc instructors in my time and I respect them for what they have to do to get through to their students and convince them to turn their lives around. CC is where high school goof off kids suddenly catch the spark and become voracious learners. I say more power to kids like that. Let's encourage them. As for the quixotic Maine governor's bill, it would be more productive if he proposed to do away with lifetime tenure for public school teachers. That way, teachers who fail their students could be fired and perhaps sent back to cc for some sorely needed remedial education of their own.
Community colleges have two types of students: those who REALLY want it (at last), and those who will tell the teacher what to put down for a grade, so the student can get paid for class time from some government loan program. No one is "trapped" in CC. Which is unique to other educational institutions: high school is mandatory, and university has been mandatory in another way for 50 years now. The real problem comes from our new strategy of child rearing--those dear little things are always right--never wrong--never make mistakes and most importantly should never be made to feel bad about themselves!
In keeping count of all the huge screw ups that have been caused by women in positions of authority for which they are not qualified--shall we include the psychologist in Aurora along with the woman in charge of Abu Gharib, the gal who ran Hewlett Packard into the ground, and oh so many more? These gals are an important part of our failing institutions.
This sounds like a wonderful idea! When I went back in my early thirties to get my MLT AAS, I saw many 18-20 year olds that couldn't string together a coherent sentence, much less make it to class on time and prepared. Some were taking Anatomy and Physiology for the fourth time. Still, it saved me thousands of dollars by getting the first two years out of the way. I finished up my BS and didn't have to take any electives or basic chemistry, algebra, etc so it was a good deal in many ways.