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US Education - Nearly 1/3 of US HS students will dropout

  1. Apr 13, 2006 #1

    Astronuc

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    US Education - Nearly 1/3 of US HS students will dropout!!!

    Hmmmm. I saw the headline in Time Magazine.
    http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1181646,00.html

    Sensational? Yes.

    But what to do?

    Not enough Blue Collar jobs for all, not even enough WalMart and Home Depot jobs - which are more or less poverty level anyway. :rolleyes:

    See also thread - Can America Keep Up? US News & World Report
    https://www.physicsforums.com/showthread.php?t=116454
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 13, 2006 #2

    Pengwuino

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    Uhm... this has been the situation for quite a while unfortunately.... One of the schools here has like a 60% drop-out rate... although it's slightly improved over the past few years. I remember a big story coming out showing the drop-out rates over the area and i think our school district did well relatively with a 25% dropout rate.

    Good thing all the main influences in a kids life today aren't high school dropouts themselves or people who recommend kids drop out of high school. Oh wait....

    And as per the discussions before on this, people aren't suppose to get jobs at walmart to help pay off their mortgage and sustain families.
     
  4. Apr 13, 2006 #3

    SOS2008

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    http://www.manhattan-institute.org/html/ewp_08.htm

    Here is a study with a more comprehensive view. One is the percentage breakdown by race, and that unfortunately most drop outs are minorities, with 52% being Hispanic students. The study is from 1991 to 2002, so I'd say that percentage is even higher now.

    With the AIMS test, here in Arizona many students are opting for a GED (online). They can then enter a community college, and then transfer to a university later. Nonetheless, my understanding is trade schools are in higher demand. So, the blue collar jobs illegals tend to take will become even more important for American youth.

    The immigrants we need will be in professions such as the medical field, engineers, maybe computer science, etc.
     
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2006
  5. Apr 13, 2006 #4

    chroot

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    It's a good thing I have zero loyalty to the US. As things continue to go from bad to worse here over the next fifty years -- including the economy and the recent generation of teenaged failures -- I expect to move on to Europe or some other place where I won't have to put with the consequences. You can call it an I-already-have-mine attitude if you want, but it's not like these pathetic kids had no chances. They simply forfeited.

    - Warren
     
  6. Apr 13, 2006 #5
    Why do you have a negtive view on the U.S.?We went though bad times like this before in the past and we had good times too.Just because were having a bad time now doesn't mean it's competly terrible.
     
  7. Apr 13, 2006 #6

    Pengwuino

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    I think what he's talking about is different from the "good" and "bad" times you are talking about. What i suspect your talking about is the overall feeling of a country... comparing things like post ww2 years (immediately after that iS), vietnam era, the 80's, etc etc. What I think chroot is talking about is that the nation's components (it's citizens) are turning into just very.... pathetic people and he does not want to have to deal with them as they grow up and enter the public.

    I personally feel if for example, the people i know keep acting the way they do all their adult lives, i would contemplate leaving myself as i got older. I have that "feeling" though that they will most likely mature in great enough numbers so that they are mature enough to deal with in the real world. As far as the whole economic and scientific outlook... i suspect it's going to be bad although i think theres way too many variables to make a meaninful prediction as to hte future economic and scientific position of the US.
     
  8. Apr 13, 2006 #7

    Pengwuino

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    Actually the trends are reversing. Hispanics are dropping out much less in the past few years, african americans are dropping out at a bit less, but "whites" are actually dropping more then ever... I think the study was released about 6 months ago... i gotta remember who was reporting it though....
     
  9. Apr 13, 2006 #8

    Pengwuino

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  10. Apr 13, 2006 #9

    chroot

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    Let's see... our economy is now largely based on knowledge workers and houses. The houses, of course, will become less and less valuable as the economy continues to hemmorhage, because no one wants to live in a place with a hemmorhaging economy. What's left is knowledge and residual wealth. We cling to our position as the only superpower for those reasons alone.

    Knowledge. Our country continues to host the world's best universities. Few people anywhere in the world have access to such education as American citizens, even considering that, unlike other countries, education is not technically free here. Unfortunately, a third of Americans don't even bother finishing high school, and we're granting fewer and fewer science and engineering degrees -- the sort of education that got us into this fat-and-happy state to begin with. Futhermore, many of those who receive advanced degrees are foreigners who later move back to their homeland.

    Residual wealth. Our country has built up a vast amount of money over the last hundred years -- things like the automobile, computers, medicine and so on have reaped enormous financial rewards. Unfortunately, we're spending our savings now at an alarming rate. We've outsourced virtually all of our manufacturing and blue-collar work to other countries. We will not be able to maintain our collective bank balances over the next century.

    I'm rather sure that the US is declining in its capacity to produce products and services that would permit us to stay on top. Other countries like China and India, on the other hand, are rapidly ramping their capacities up. At some point, one of them will pass the US. It won't be long, and you can bet I'll be gone.

    - Warren
     
  11. Apr 13, 2006 #10
    How long do you think it will last for China and India?
     
  12. Apr 13, 2006 #11

    Pengwuino

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    Wait wait, let's keep the hyperbole to a minimum.

    I do wonder what the reaction woudl be if the government forced graduate schools to keep a quota as to how many degrees could go to foreigners. I personally don't know about India but with China, we're facing a country that simply cannot compete in the long term unless they make big changes. The more that capitalism enters into the Chinese culture, the less stable their government will be and if they do reform, their economony will have to slow down in order to re-arrange the social system to fit a more democratic society. I think that would be one of the only chances the US has to push back into firm control. I honestly don't think you can maintain a economic superpower under a dictatorship or a pseudo-communist state.
     
  13. Apr 13, 2006 #12
    I agree. China will not be able to keep an stable goverment as becomes a more proweful ecconmy and an unstable goverment is very bad for an ecconmy.
    I also think that U.S. should have tougher polices on China.They are theart to national secuirty.We should some trade restricons on products improted form china so that our ecconmy can still keep up.

    Also I'am tried of education not teaching a simple thinks about life shouldn't they teach kids that sports aren't the only thing in the world or that you can't just fail.
    I'am also tried of these trouble makers in our schools.The really bad students that make stupid jokes in class and distrupt class or somtimes yell(literllay) at there teachers just because they got a detion.Some of these kids should sent to a school that is pretty much the same thing as boot camp.If there going to distrupt class for the other students then they should be sent to those schools and disturpt the other students and teachers.
    I also don't think collages should have not too much to do with sports and they shouldn't be an option as a major.

    But another short-term solotion to not pervent drop outs in high school:Make getting a high school degree mandtory.
     
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2006
  14. Apr 13, 2006 #13

    russ_watters

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    Though I don't share your view on the US itself, I do share your view on the concept of opportunity in the US. Hmm.... The HS dropout rate is 30%. I wonder if that coincides at all with the poverty rate....?

    When the government gives you something (an education) and you don't take it, you should forfeit the priveledge of the government giving you anything else (welfare).
     
  15. Apr 13, 2006 #14

    Pengwuino

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    Sports aren't an... oh god i hope it isnt an option for a major. The closest thing i can think of is kineseology and it may or may not be a dumby major but it's still a subject that requires work.

    One of the problems here is that people are pushing this whole anti-establishment crap and leaving high school is the perfect way to show your "hatred for hte man" or whatever. It kinda annoys me that politicians and activists pander to these people who most likely put their lives on a self-destructive course for stupid or selfish reasons.

    Well there would have to be exceptions of course... some people HAVE to drop out of high school for one reason or another.
     
  16. Apr 14, 2006 #15

    loseyourname

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    This doesn't make a whole lot of sense to me. Sure, China and India, or one or the other, might pass the US and become the world's most prosperous country. If it bothers you so much that the US is not #1, why not move to China or India? Why move to Europe, which long ago was in the position of the US, no longer being #1? What's the big deal with completely being on the statistical top of everything, anyway? Is your life bad? Mine isn't, and I don't imagine it ever will be, dropouts or not, science and engineering degrees or not.
     
  17. Apr 14, 2006 #16

    Gokul43201

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    If you count "prosperity" in terms of the comforts accessible to a citizen with an income around the national median, IMO, neither India nor China will surpass the US for at least a century.
     
  18. Apr 14, 2006 #17

    Art

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    I agree :approve:

    The economic threat posed by India and china are vastly over exaggerated. In fact as these countries develop they will become huge potential markets for US output.

    I say potential because if the US doesn't stop relying so heavily on domestic demand for it's goods and services and start actually exporting then other countries will seize the opportunities America is passing up.

    As a small example, Newegg.com is a very good US distributor of computer components but will they ship outside the US? Nope! Like the vast majority of other US companies they are totally blind to sales opportunities overseas.
     
  19. Apr 14, 2006 #18
    So... mercantilism of education instead of goods? Interesting idea. It might even work, but somehow I doubt it will do much more than slow down other countries a bit while they divert more resources to establishing their own top-notch universities, thus overall diverting money from the US's university towns (I live in one, btw).
     
  20. Apr 14, 2006 #19
    True, but nations tend to play Empire. In that case, Asia is going to be pushing the rest of the world around for a while, even if a billion of its population are extremely poor. Might be interesting to see unionization begin in China after a communist revolution (ignoring whether or not the revolution truly succeeded).
     
  21. Apr 14, 2006 #20
    The dropout problem has become much worse in the "rust" belt in the last ten years. As for Indiana (Shelbyville was the focus of the article), they have come up with another "won't work" idea:

    http://www.theindychannel.com/news/8625565/detail.html

    Somehow we have to make kids want to learn again and with the current situation I don't have a clue as to how to do that. Kids seem to be bored with learning to the point that they just don't care.

    In the midwest a lot of kids have seen their parents lose their factory jobs to outsourcing only to get another job and then lose that one also. It is a vicious cycle and the family financial problems along with the downtrodden psyche of the parents is showing up in the children. I have seen this in my own extended family back in Indiana.

    I do know that a lot of kids who grow up in a small town atmosphere don't really want to have to move to Detroit or Philadelphia to find work in competitive markets. Kids in the big city "hoods" tend to be the same way. Dropping out keeps them in familiar surroundings.

    In essence I see this drop out trend as a psychological problem as much as anything. In the past ten years the once secure world of these kids has spun down into despair and confusion faster than they have been able to adjust to it.
     
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2006
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