State high school graduation standards are different across America. There is one trend that is becoming more and more disturbing with them. They continue to increase year after year. This is a problem because many of the standards are obsolete. When you push in more Math, Science, English, and History standards, you push out more authentic learning opportunities such as the arts, music, trades, and business.
In my conversations with state representatives and people entrenched in traditional academia on this matter I get a common response that is frankly shocking to me. That answer is, “I don’t think we need to dumb down education any more than it is by removing graduation standards.”
That’s right… adding more obsolete outdated educational standards to our students in stand alone departments and divisions is actually geared towards making our students more intelligent?!
Look, I am all for pushing people to do their best in life. I am not for making it easier just to make my job easier as an educator. I am for making education MORE AUTHENTIC IN THIS DAY AND AGE!
Removing outdated state graduation requirements is not dumbing down education… It is actually ramping it up!
Let’s take out silly requirements like 4 years of Math and History and put in some curriculum that has students engaged in their community. Let’s take students outside the boxed in school building build for the assembly line age and put them in problem solving situations that are actually REAL CHALLENGES in their communities. We can then tie in history, science, math, english, writing, etc. into these AUTHENTIC EXPERIENCES. Would it be challenging to do this in a system…HELL YES! AND our FUTURE GENERATIONS NEED IT!
If we are going to make creative problem solvers who can handle an ever changing environment, we better stop giving out worksheets and start educating students with real challenges in their communities.
Contact your state board of education and let them know the current requirements need to be lessened to open more authentic opportunities. Make you voices heard!