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Definitely agree. It would be awesome to see schools actually offer programs within the high school time frame, to where a student can be fully certified (possibly in conjunction with a trade school) to leave high school fully qualified to begin a trade. It's disappointing to me that so, so many jobs or careers require additional schooling outside of high school. Not to mention that they cost money. A 12 year schooling time frame should be more than adequate to fully prepare at least some students that are not interested in pursuing 'professional' careers that will require years and years of additional education, such as a lawyer, doctor, engineer, etc.
And so many students just don't have the cash to pay for higher education of any kind. So they settle for fast food gigs, department store entry level positions, or whatever they can get. But if these same 18 year olds were qualified and ready to get to work straight out of high school, so many young lives wouldn't have to be a constant struggle, just to leave home.
And these same young adults could still pursue higher education at any time. The great plus would be that they could be certified in a whatever trade prospect, and have a legitimate career path to jump into to help them pay for schooling, or to fall back on if they discover that college is not for them.
Question is, how can we go about convincing the education system to implement such a change in priority of education? I don't rightly know, but I really hope that somehow, someway it will happen. If for no other reason than just out of necessity, like when we built the original and now outdated education system around the notion that math, science and literary skills were paramount due to the explosion of the industrial era.