Harvard Study: 4 Year Colleges Aren’t for Everyone

This really isn’t a surprise, is it?

The U.S. is focusing too much attention on helping students pursue four-year college degrees, when two-year and occupational programs may better prepare them for the job market, a Harvard University report said.
The “college for all” movement has produced only incremental gains as other nations leapfrog the United States, and the country is failing to prepare millions of young people to become employable adults….Most of the 47 million jobs to be created by 2018 will require some postsecondary education, the report said. Educators should offer young people two-year degrees and apprenticeships to achieve career success, and do more to ensure that students who begin such programs complete them, said Robert Schwartz, academic dean at Harvard’s education school, who heads the Pathways project.
“For an awful lot of bored, disengaged kids who are on the fence about completing high school, they need to see a pathway that leads them to a career that is not going to require them to sit in classrooms for the next several years,” Schwartz said yesterday in a telephone interview.

This is an area of education reform that should get more attention. The report can be found HERE (PDF).

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13 years ago

For sure. Isn’t it interesting how “what goes around comes around”?
While vocational or voc-tech schools used to be the dumping ground for disengaged kids the concept was still on target.
Now the necessary improvements include wrapping academic requirements around the vocational programs. For instance, a CNA program provides a viable pathway to employment but must prepare the students with the reading, writing and math skills necessry to be a valuable CNA for a potential employer.
Education policy is so odd..well-financed research for much of what is common sense.

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