Monday, July 21, 2008

Education Hedge

Reducing the number of drop-outs is a very common objective of education reform. Yet, no matter which novel program is chosen, dropping out below a certain age is impossible. Rather than trying to reduce the drop-out rate, shouldn't we focus on making those who drop-out employable?

Most jobs require only good reading and writing skills, and very little math, science, economy and history. So why don't we teach only reading, writing and simple arithmetic until a decent, employable level is reached? Such a target should easily be achievable by age 13, when dropping-out becomes an option.

Perhaps by then the really boring subjects (reading and writing) will have been learned, and the basket of subjects remaining will be sufficiently interesting to prevent most drop-outs from occurring.