Most of the education conversation is about K-12 these days, but with a college education out of reach financially for most in our area, I have a suggestion.
This thought was triggered when I read of a program in Coeur d'Alene in which a student can take college credit courses while in high school up to within one credit of an associate degree.
I would like to see an optional 13th year added to our high schools with a fully funded degree program. With this head start, some of our brighter students can then attend Lewis and Clark for the final two years necessary for a degree, or even turn NIC into the top two grades, instead of the first two.
As baby boomers kids have for the most part grown up, there looms an underutilization of space in many of our school districts. This program would encourage teachers to advance their own qualifications for teaching college level courses. Along with that we would have a stay at home opportunity for advancement past high school.
Then turn NIC into a Junior-Senior school, accepting high school graduates of the enhanced program with the need for a third and fourth year facility.
Revolutionary? Of course, but while K-12 is getting all of the attention, we are experiencing a brain drain of epic proportions. Most of our highly educated people are imported from other countries that have placed a higher degree of emphasis on higher education.
Not since the great depression has education taken any giant steps forward. We once made one room K-8 schools obsolete. Why not another large jump.
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