Sunday, December 30, 2007

Educational Reform - Higher Education Thoughts

While my eldest is just in 8th grade, I have alot of friends whose children (and families) are going thru the ordeal of applying to and selecting a college.

I'm struck by the fact that while elementary and primary school education are in a period of wild-change, I'm unaware of any dramatic re-engineering that is going on at the college level.

For primary and secondary education, the great waves are:
  • A major new vote with their feet by 4% of the population to homeschooling
  • An attempt from above to control and impose rigor by No Child Left Behind
  • An attempt to privatize with school vouchers and school choice
  • A massive investment by parents in supplementary education materials and services
  • Much attempts to move to magnet schools, centers of excellence, and other choices within the system and away from the large high schools which supposedly provided resources for everyone (but turned into a scary environment for everyone)
At the college level however, it seems to be business as usual. Anyone who lives near a large state university campus can tell you that education appears to be the last thing on most students' minds. The professors all know that undergraduate education is the last thing on their mind as they compete to publish and for perks. But the budgets of so many families and states are built around providing four year access to these institutions of "higher learning". In the case of most schools, this expression is a joke.

Shouldn't this be on the agenda? Any politicians want to step up to the plate?

No comments: