Eliminate 12th grade?

Posted on 02/16/2010 in misc

Hey, they might try it in Utah.

Yes, some brain dead conservative legislator in Utah really suggested that the state reduce its budget deficit by eliminating the 12th grade. He has since back tracked and suggested that 12th grade be optional for kids that have completed the graduation requirements. That actually isn't such a bad idea. I'd be curious if he has any financial interests in the private school world. Eliminating 12th grade and forcing parents to ante up for a year of private school for college prep would be a financial windfall for the private school industry. However, The Zero Boss points out that he is eliminating the wrong grade. Senior year rocks. We don't want to eliminate it. Being a freshman usually sucks, so we should ditch 9th grade instead.

I have even a wackier idea. Let's do away with the whole concept of lockstep advancement based on age. Advance kids based on their individual merits and needs. Just think what it'll do for high school sports. It'll be perfectly legal to keep dumb, talented jocks around for 7 or 8 years of high school. I can only imagine the football dynasties that could result.

I'm kidding about the football proposal. Maybe. Seriously though, if the point of school is to learn X, and you have achieved the goal of learning X, what is the point of sticking around? I think a lot of kids would benefit from getting the hell out of school a year or two early and logging some time in the real world before moving on to college.

This is not a totally academic issue for me. My 16 year old could easily pass the GED tomorrow. Granted, he isn't in school anyway, but I have been wondering if there is any benefit if he takes the test and starts taking some community college courses next year. He'll probably be taking CC classes next year anyway, just wondering what the pros and cons are of staying a legal high schooler versus getting the GED and stopping the charade.

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