The big news out of Washington is the President’s plan to make college more accessible by making two years of community college free. Okay, I have not read really anything about what the plan is, as he is announcing it later today but it’s based on what they are doing in Tennessee but I really don’t think that this really gets to the heart of the whole education issue. More details are said to be coming in the State of the Union address on January 20th. Obama want to make it so that we have a highly skilled workforce to compete with other nations around the world. Cecilia Munoz, Obama’s domestic policy adviser, hope that it becomes like Obama’s universal pre-K idea that he pushed at the last State of the Union. The idea didn’t really go anywhere in Congress but on the state level it made movement and they are hoping for a similar results with the College plan.
While this is all well and good I think that some of the issues that are address could be fixed by raising the standards of high school education. If we want a competent workforce there should made an effort to bring secondary education up to the level of the community college. So individuals with just a high school diploma are competent and well rounded members of society. What I mean by well rounded is that Arts programs the music, theater, and art should be mandatory along side the sciences so everyone can have a basic appreciation of the arts and these classes could just be appreciation classes or they should be incorporated into other subjects. By bringing the arts into the world is a wonderful thing and develops young minds into better people.
I went to a catholic school for grades 1-8 and then completed grades 9-12 in public school. I think that I got a better education in the catholic school then the public school, the standards were higher and that’s a good thing. We should expect more out of the student population than we do today. So many school are teaching for multiple choice tests that concepts may be learn yet not fully understood. If I were in charge of the education system I’d keep many things K-5 would be filled with what we know as elementary education today. Grades 6-8 would be middle school and in the 8th is where would start with algebra 1 and other typical freshmen classes. High school would basically be the same but with already a year or at least a half done there could be more time to explore different topics or something arts related. Sure we can grow the STEM programs as well, as long as there is room for the arts for everyone.