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.
Germany, historically the model for the American educational system, has a far more practical system than America does today. We often forget that the traditional model for higher ed was designed for scholars, and teachers, some wealthy elites, and Protestant ministers.
We know that a minority, probably a small minority, of American college students are natural scholars or passionately curious. More want, or need, the credential.
SAY WHAAAAAAA???? That goes all against "for a better future, you need at least 4 years of college" trumpeted thought.
Just ask Harvard, Princeton, or any of the biggies - college learnin' does you good.
Never mind the Himalayan debt, but that paper and GPA does a whole lotta good for that entry level SLUF position
Full disclosure - I have a MS in CompSci, but most of my tech knowledge came from hands-on learning and self discovery, not from the overpriced books and the limited experience the Facilitators (no more Profs in our school - they are there to help, not lord over students...) brought to class. It was overpriced and a 'ticket-punch' for the career path...
When I was in the Peace Corps in West Africa in the late 60s I encountered German, Dutch and French mechanics and other tradesmen usually doing alternative military service, but could have been there for other reasons as well. These young men presumably went through the European trade schools yet they were better educated than many of the US university grads who made up the PC then. They read newspapers daily and they knew more about American history, let alone their own history than most of us.
Just because you go through a voc ed program doesn't mean you must be ignorant. Setting up an equivalent program in the US would require a major revision of our elementary and secondary ed programs.
German model of education? Um, no thanks, I'd rather not determine in the 4th or 5th grade what a child's future will be - worker or scholar. Perhaps, when they are a little older; but, that's way too young in my opinion to determine what their future will or will not be. That is far too limiting; for both the individual and for society.