The Inefficiency of U.S. High Schools



U.S. high schools are not properly preparing kids for the college

experience.



The primary purpose of a high school in the United States is to get



kids into college. The courses taught in U.S. high schools are way too

lenient in their



grading policies and offer students much leeway. High school courses are too





lenient because high school teachers make them that way. One good example

that



proves just how much leeway secondary education offers students is that on

average,



professors at the high school level accept late papers. Of course late

papers are



marked down, but this policy voids the purpose to having deadlines. Most

universities,



both public and private set strict guidelines on these matters and openly

encourage



their professors to do the same.



I turned in papers a week late in high school and still received



a grade of 70 % on them. This is coming back to hunt me in college because I

now



have a big problem meeting deadlines. Although I do not like to admit it, if





high school had been stricter in this respect I might not be going through

these many



difficulties right now



Most public high school teachers are astoundingly underpaid and



overworked with sometimes over fifty students in a single classroom. In the

last ten



years the average class size doubled according to a Time magazine study

published



in 1995 stating that throughout the whole nation classes have doubled in

size. The



article mentions that this problem has occurred and will worsen due to

illegal



immigration, a population expansion, and people migration to cities and urban

sites.



Some students that can afford a private tutor or the cost of private

education follow that



path. This is not fair to the majority that can't afford this. Again, the

lack of individual



and private interaction between professor ends up resulting in that the

student gets



half of the education. For some reason I don't know, the student ends up

always



paying the price of an inadequate and inefficient public high school system.



These statistics offer little incentive and motivation to get teachers to

take action and



lobby for change.



Governmental cutbacks have forced many schools to close vital



advanced placement and other college preparatory courses which are vital for

the



student aspiring for a college education. It is becoming now more than ever

common



that states give private entities and teachers public school charters along

with grants



and financial aid to encourage the nation's public high schools, as

California



Governor William Wells said in a 1994 Time magazine article titled, "A Class

of their



Own," "to raise their standards and improve the quality of education for all

students."



Public high schools around the nation should establish and "enforce"



stricter college preparatory curriculums because over 50% of high school

students that



participated in a Time magazine poll conducted in 1996 said they are

interested in



pursuing a 4-year college education. The article stated that fifty years ago

this would



not have been the case.



If over half the students attending U.S. high schools wish to pursue



university education then public schools should tailor their programs to meet





the needs and demands of the majority. It is important to know that there is

a small



percentage of the nation that don't even go to high school as the October

22, 1990



Time Magazine article, "Schooling Kids At Home," points out.



Parents send their kids to school confident that the school will prepare



them well for the future, but overlook that essential programs like SAT

preparation and



study skills courses are not offered. How must a school system expect that

one study



efficiently for exams if they don't show how. Clearly people have been

studying for



many years and there is no set way to study, but it helps to know what are

the most



time efficient ways to review for exams.



I feels that s "study skills" class should be offered in every public



high school around the nation. If this implies a great cost then study

skills should be



incorporated in the daily curriculum or at least taught once a week during

class. The



fact is that some time should be set aside for this essential class for which

there is



great need for. The same concept applies for S.A.T. preparation. Again I

propose the



conundrum, how must one be expected to pass the S.A.T if schools don't show

us how



to pass it. Many students are left to figure out how