American High School Education System by Leon Botstein

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In the article “Let Teenagers Try Adulthood”, Leon Botstein argues that the American high school is outdated and should be totally rebuilt. The main problem high school system faced with, according to Botstein article, is an overall disintegration of the student culture, which has happened because of the prevalence of social cliques and exponentiations of sport teams over than student culture. Moreover, the early maturity of young people in the late twentieth century has lead to the isolation of hormonally active adolescents, thereby holding teenagers beyond the developmental level. Finally, the poor quality of teacher training is another problem schools should worry about. Giving his points of view about all these problems, Botstein suggest modifying secondary education by giving children a chance to start education at age of four or five and combining middle school and junior high school. School should let students graduate at sixteen instead of eighteen years old and let them indulge their energies in the field of knowledge they want to pursue. Trying to understand what has happened and what could be improved in the educational system, which was one of the best systems in the world, I can overall agree with Leon Botstein that “the American high school is obsolete and should be abolished” (“Let Teenagers Try Adulthood” Leon Botstein). However, looking over the problems, I can disagree with some of specific Botstein claims. The main problem is not an early maturity of young people, but lack of high schools financing which leads to poor quality of teachers training and overall disintegration of the students’ culture.

Asking people of old generation which years were the most memorable and educational for them, most of them should mention years of high school. Years of transition from adolescence to adulthood, years of knowing oneself in the world, understanding their goals; this is the world of high school as it was many years ago, but not anymore. Nowadays,...
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