Our pa­thetic schools

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - VOICES -

Af­ter read­ing Rex Nel­son’s well­writ­ten piece in the Sun­day paper, I com­mend him on his proac­tive stance. The lead­er­ship in Lit­tle Rock has been neg­li­gent.

I be­lieve, how­ever, that the root cause of this sad state of af­fairs is our pa­thetic school sys­tem. We are rais­ing crim­i­nals, not en­trepreneurs. Our school sys­tem doesn’t equip our younger gen­er­a­tion to make a liv­ing.

A boy who loves cars and wants to be a me­chanic, for in­stance, doesn’t need nor want an ex­ten­sive knowl­edge of Latin, English lit­er­a­ture, or di­a­gram­ming sen­tences. A girl who wants to be a nurse doesn’t need Euro­pean his­tory ei­ther.

Our stu­dents should have the op­tion of choos­ing their path of ed­u­ca­tion in the eighth or ninth grade. Those who want to go to col­lege should take col­lege prep cour­ses and not be held back by those who have no in­ter­est.

Lit­tle Rock, for its size, has an amaz­ing num­ber of pri­vate schools which do pre­pare stu­dents for col­lege. Peo­ple have voted with their feet to con­demn the ill-planned, over­lap­ping school sys­tems which are heavy on a highly paid bu­reau­cracy and light on cur­ricu­lum. Un­for­tu­nately, they still have to pay the taxes that sup­port this failed ed­u­ca­tion sys­tem in ad­di­tion to pay­ing for the ex­pen­sive tu­ition at the prep school of their choice.

An over­haul of the present sys­tem is long over­due.

MICHAEL DON FESS

Lit­tle Rock

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