Smart Education Reform
In my book Solutions: Ways to fix America I discuss changing America’s education system for the better. I elaborated in the document Reworking Education – Years 1 thru 5. This is the continuance of that.
This approach slightly changes the current K-8, 9-12 system. Instead of K-12 then 2 years of state-sponsored community college, it includes those extra 2 years for the same total of 15 years.
6th year students will have chosen a major and minor from the 4 primary career paths. They will begin a shift in their education from centralized learning to coursework more specific to their selection.
Science and Social Studies (history) will continue. Three-quarters of course work will be traditional studies with one-quarter dedicated to their major and minor.
Social studies will expand. Students will learn about world history through significant empires and events. When applicable it will be linked to their course of study.
Science will continue in a similar fashion. Those majoring in STEM will endure more math-based sciences, those in human services more physiology, those in trade more common-use sciences, and those in business more data/financial sciences.
The same goes for English – students will begin learning more difficult words related to their major.
7th year students will have even more of their time focused to their major and minor: 50% common course work, 50% specialized course work. At the end of this year they may choose to switch majors or minors (but must participate in relevant courses).
Students will all learn more about social studies, including the beginnings of American history. Students will learn about politics and how the 3 branches of government work.
Students will learn more about science, including planetary science both solar and terrestrial. They will learn about forces and causality. STEM and Business majors will have an additional science workload.
Students will begin learning about different occupations available to them through their career path, as well as what it might mean for their future.
Students in Trade and Human Services will learn more about the science and literature specific to their career path.
8th year students will be challenged tremendously. While the course work up until now has been relatively easy, advanced courses are soon to come.
Students will have one-quarter dedicated towards civics, human history, and American history.
Students will have one-quarter dedicated towards lessons pertaining to their major.
Students will have one-quarter dedicated towards lessons pertaining to their minor.
Students will be given one-quarter for elective courses. This can be used to make up course work from changing majors/minors or for an optional class like art, literature, sports, etc.
At the end of the school year students will be tested. Depending on their results they will either move forward or repeat studies where needed. A forced shift in majors/minors may be required depending on the student’s proficiency.
9th year students will be switching to a more robust curriculum focused on life skills and learning. This is the final year students are required to attend.
Students will learn about household finances, taxes, and financial planning.
Students will learn about health, anatomy, and take physical fitness.
Students will read and write more advanced materials to verify English comprehension.
Students will be given an elective class where they can choose from optional classes (art, sports, etc.). This will be the last chance to make up required course work for those that changed/shifted majors & minors.
9th Grade is traditionally a student’s freshman year in secondary school (or “high school”). While this is still somewhat the case, it does not follow the traditional “freshman, sophomore, junior, senior” structure.
10th year students will be transitioning into a new institution: one specialized in their areas of study. While similar to high school, this school lasts up to 6 years. Core studies are done.
Instead of a standard school year these 15 year olds will decide on an actual occupation. The year will be spent learning about different careers that their major/minor studies will prepare them for. Multiple opportunities for job shadowing will be given.
Students will then choose a career towards the end of the school year. They will be paired with individuals that are currently working or have retired from that job. This is to prepare them for the years to come while they finalize their education through various means.