February 6th, 2019
(written by lawrence krubner, however indented passages are often quotes). You can contact lawrence at: firstname.lastname@example.org
I have a saying when my peers compare themselves to the Zuckerbergs and Gates and Musks of the world: How many hundreds of thousands of dollars did your parents spend on your education? Because you have to realize that is who you are competing with.
I went to a VERY RURAL high school. We had 3 math classes that everyone went through… none of them college level. My math class decided it was funny to rip up the floor tiles and smash them against the blackboard when the teacher’s back was turned. Kids would just not do the homework and they would pass them so they didn’t have to deal with them for another year.
No AP classes, no test prep to speak of. Top of the class were just the obedient kids who did the 7th-grade level homework assignments. We had a small band and it was tight-knit and fun.
I get really down on myself because I’m so far away from what I actually want to be. But did I actually have a chance? Yeah. But a small one. Much smaller than a lot of other people. And now the kind of jobs I can get are… fine I guess. Not great, just fine. I’m almost 30 and now I need to learn a ton of mathematics my peers have known for a decade.
I ended up going to whatever Chicago college would take me at an affordable rate ( DePaul ). College was hard. I worked 40 hours a week and went to night classes. I struggled through the “easy” classes and SCRAPED past on the hard classes.
Still, my early education wasn’t SO BAD. At least I didn’t have to worry about violence or a gang trying to draft me.
I have a crazy idea around this: End high school sooner.
Let the kids leave sophomore year, or even earlier. Let them go to trade schools.
For most of the country, school is just child jail. Why are we forcing students who WANT TO LEARN AND IMPROVE deal with students who do not want to be there, and are going to end up working at a tire plant anyway?
“But but but.. the education!” They are not getting an education anyway. The schools do not have enough resources to teach these kids. They do not want to be there. They are torturing everyone around them because they are bored.