Higher Education: If College Is The Same As High School, We Can Cut One.

HIGHER EDUCATION: If College Is The Same As High School, We Can Cut One.

Conflating high school and college is a harmful trend, and that legislators are seeking to recreate a wheel that doesn’t roll straight tells us this. When cronyist meddling in any industry fails, government simply attempts a repeat. It knows nothing but meddling, so it will poke here, pull strings there, and ultimately come to settle on something eerily similar to the original approach.

High school-college mashups are ineffective because they put college work in high school. Not high-school students in college. AP, for instance, is a single program dumped into a high school environment, many times into schools that perform below what most of us would consider appropriate for high school.

Programs cannot be fully insulated from their environments, and in schools can be highly porous, routinely taking in students who are unprepared for the coursework and weigh down the rest of the class. Mashups try to fit an entire high-school cohort into college work while keeping students in the high-school environment, in which one can hardly help but have a high-school mentality about education and life priorities.

I am inclined to agree. I like the idea of having high schoolers earn credit in college courses, but I’m not sure how well concurrent enrollment works by simply having high schoolers take “college classes” in high school.


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