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    Wondergirl's Avatar
    Wondergirl Posts: 38,812, Reputation: 5431
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    #1

    Jun 7, 2022, 09:32 AM
    Benefits of vocational classes
    There's such a push to attend college. I was pleased to read this letter to the editor in this morning's newspaper --

    "All high school students should have the opportunity to explore vocational education. Funds should be allocated for classes in culinary arts, cosmetology, automotive repair, carpentry, plumbing, etc. Many students enjoy working with their hands, and these classes would give them the opportunity to not only learn new skills but also to pursue them as careers.

    Even students in college-bound high school would benefit from vocational classes. Many academic skills are learned by taking vocational classes; for example, math in carpentry and physics in automotive repair. Upon graduation, the student could go to technical school or to college and use those skills for part-time work.

    When students are given the opportunity to take classes that interest them, they will be successful, graduate, gain employment, earn money and enjoy life.

    They will not have time to think about drugs, gangs, carjackings and other illegal activities."

    WG says, I'd start them even younger than in high school, probably in 5th grade, with simple hands-on occupational tasks.
    jlisenbe's Avatar
    jlisenbe Posts: 4,346, Reputation: 156
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    #2

    Jun 7, 2022, 11:47 AM
    The author was doing pretty well until this. "They will not have time to think about drugs, gangs, carjackings and other illegal activities." That's just fantasy.

    But otherwise, it has some merit. It's already being done in my state. Our county has a vocational center that students are bussed to for a good portion of the day. They have classes for automotive repair, computer tech, and so forth. It doesn't seem to be particularly well attended, but it's there for those who want it. Our community college also has a number of programs for vocational skills.

    One big problem is that vocational programs are expensive, so there is the question of where the money will come from.

    Another issue is how to get those kids into really meaningful voc programs and yet still have them graduate with a high school diploma. Grad requirements have become progressively stiffer in the last two or three decades, so how to have students take a couple of voc classes a day and STILL get the needed classes to graduate is a real challenge.
    Wondergirl's Avatar
    Wondergirl Posts: 38,812, Reputation: 5431
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    #3

    Jun 7, 2022, 05:56 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by jlisenbe View Post
    The author was doing pretty well until this. "They will not have time to think about drugs, gangs, carjackings and other illegal activities." That's just fantasy.
    But realize it's another piece of the "moral strong two-parent family" anchor.
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    jlisenbe Posts: 4,346, Reputation: 156
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    #4

    Jun 7, 2022, 06:25 PM
    How's that?
    Wondergirl's Avatar
    Wondergirl Posts: 38,812, Reputation: 5431
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    #5

    Jun 7, 2022, 06:37 PM
    Excellent schooling plus training for a successful and stable future and work life.

    It takes a village....
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    jlisenbe Posts: 4,346, Reputation: 156
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    #6

    Jun 7, 2022, 07:57 PM
    Back when we had a large number of two parent families we had the Ten Commandments on the wall and prayer in schools. Voc programs were sparse. Draw your own conclusions.
    Wondergirl's Avatar
    Wondergirl Posts: 38,812, Reputation: 5431
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    #7

    Jun 7, 2022, 08:59 PM
    As for vocational guidance -- Fathers taught their sons automotive work, mechanics, how to build with concrete blocks and wood. Mothers taught their dsughters how to sew and cook and bake and clean house. Children were taught how to care for their pets -- feed them, clean the litter box, walk the dog, clean out the hamster cages. When younger siblings came along, the older sibs were taught by the parents how to diaper and feed and play with the younger ones. Parents played board games like Monopoly and Scrabble and Parcheesi plus card games like Authors and War and Old Maid with their children. Prayers were said in religious schools, not in public schools. The Ten Commandments were not posted anywhere I can recall, especially not in schools. Kids were responsible, eager to learn, empathetic, cooperative with their teachers and classmates.
    jlisenbe's Avatar
    jlisenbe Posts: 4,346, Reputation: 156
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    #8

    Jun 8, 2022, 03:05 AM
    As for vocational guidance -- Fathers taught their sons automotive work, mechanics, how to build with concrete blocks and wood. Mothers taught their dsughters how to sew and cook and bake and clean house. Children were taught how to care for their pets -- feed them, clean the litter box, walk the dog, clean out the hamster cages. When younger siblings came along, the older sibs were taught by the parents how to diaper and feed and play with the younger ones. Parents played board games like Monopoly and Scrabble and Parcheesi plus card games like Authors and War and Old Maid with their children.
    You are describing what took place at home, not at the schools. I doubt it was as widespread as you think it was. You really think most homes had hamsters back then, or litter boxes for cats, or had Parcheesi games in the evenings?

    Prayers were said in religious schools, not in public schools. The Ten Commandments were not posted anywhere I can recall, especially not in schools.
    The Supreme Court case that disallowed prayer was from a public school district in New York that mandated prayer. Prayers were said in many public schools and the Ten Commandments were posted in many schools.

    Kids were responsible, eager to learn, empathetic, cooperative with their teachers and classmates.
    Neither one of us has any real idea of how widespread that was. I guess it was somewhat more true then than now. In my experience at two inner city schools, the students were generally cooperative and eager to learn. We had very few problems with discipline, but we didn't tolerate consistent misbehavior. At my last school, the kids were really good. I have no doubt that, in most cases, students learn more now than was the case fifty years ago. Testing data certainly indicates that.
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    tomder55 Posts: 1,742, Reputation: 343
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    #9

    Jun 8, 2022, 03:11 AM
    I got my degree from college .I got my career from my apprenticeship (vocational) time while working as I attended college .

    There is no guarantees that a 2 parent home will prevent a child from being influenced by society at large . But it definitely helps .Also if they are attending college ,it may take up to a decade to escape the brain washing indoctrination . Some never break free from the progressive mind meld .
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    jlisenbe Posts: 4,346, Reputation: 156
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    #10

    Jun 8, 2022, 05:12 AM
    And that has become so widespread and nonsensical that I don't know what can be done to reverse it. I can only tell parents to choose carefully.
    Wondergirl's Avatar
    Wondergirl Posts: 38,812, Reputation: 5431
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    #11

    Jun 8, 2022, 09:14 AM
    Quote Originally Posted by jlisenbe View Post
    You are describing what took place at home, not at the schools.
    My point was that kids got good, basic hands-on training and experience at home that was later supported by and fleshed out in school, especially high school
    I doubt it was as widespread as you think it was. You really think most homes had hamsters back then, or litter boxes for cats, or had Parcheesi games in the evenings?
    I grew up during the '40s and '50s in the South, the Northeast, and spent time with relatives in the Midwest and West. The farm families, of course, had outside animals/pets, but many of my cousins and friends had indoor-outdoor cats and/or dogs plus small animals in cages in the house. And yes, board games and card games were "hot"; summers were spent playing them on a big front porch or on a blanket spread on the lawn under a shade tree. Or on the kitchen table during school holiday breaks.

    The Midwest students I taught/tutored during the late '60s and '70s reported similar adventures and experiences.
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    RandomPerson36 Posts: 16, Reputation: 2
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    #12

    Jun 8, 2022, 03:08 PM
    I agree! Vocational classes are great, especially for people interested in pursuing a trade/going to trade school, or for those who may not be able to afford college or want to jump straight into work instead.

    At the middle and high schools I attended, we had the option to take "Career and Technical (CTE)" electives; I'm not sure if they're different from vocational classes, but they sounded pretty similar. I remember a lot of my classmates being really excited to try classes in carpentry/woodworking, architecture/construction, agriculture/animal science, welding, manufacturing, etc. In fact, my high school managed to fit in a program where one CTE elective in the same field per year could let students graduate with an "endorsement" in addition to their diploma that encouraged local community college recruiters to come talk to them and see if they wished to pursue a technical degree in the future.

    Even better, my high school got a bond that allowed them to expand their CTE program tenfold; they now have an entire wing dedicated to CTE courses and even allow students to enroll in dual credit ones that allow them to start earning community college credits early; too bad my class graduated right before we could take advantage of all that lol.

    Anyways, it'd be great if other schools could do stuff like that as we really need more people in the trades. I think it'd open a lot more jobs up too!
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    jlisenbe Posts: 4,346, Reputation: 156
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    #13

    Jun 8, 2022, 03:56 PM
    I'm all for vocational programs. I'm just saying that there are challenges that most non-school people are not aware of.

    Welcome to the board, Randomperson!

    WG, I'm sure that what you are saying was true in some cases and not true in many others. What the numbers were, I don't know. I took three voc classes in HS. I loved them. Learned to weld and do electrical work and still use them fifty years later.
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    Wondergirl Posts: 38,812, Reputation: 5431
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    #14

    Jun 8, 2022, 04:16 PM
    In 8th grade my teacher set up a unit for bill paying, check writing, check register recording, in-person banking possibilities (checking, savings, loans, etc.), how to fill out applications of various kinds.

    As high school freshman, our general science teacher assigned groups of three to various car parts (my group got a carburator) that we took apart, discussed the workings of each, and then put them back together.

    Most practical classes I ever had!
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    tomder55 Posts: 1,742, Reputation: 343
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    #15

    Jun 8, 2022, 04:24 PM
    This is what I got out of vocational school courses in high school .I learned how to set points ;change oil air and gas filters ;adjust carburetor settings . 1all very useful to me until they changed vehicle engines to a degree that you needed a PHD to do basic maintenance on your car . I also learned how to use a ball peen hammer to shape metal into an ash tray. This was the 70s so
    i don't know if vocational training has become more relevant since then . My vocational training was on the job. IMO in the real world there would be credit for apprenticeships .
    jlisenbe's Avatar
    jlisenbe Posts: 4,346, Reputation: 156
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    #16

    Jun 8, 2022, 04:54 PM
    There have been proposals for high schools to put students on tracks in, for instance, the tenth grade. Students could go for vocational training, medical track, academic track, and so forth. That sounds great until you get into what would actually constitute graduating from high school and what to do when a student changes his/her mind at the beginning of twelfth grade.

    I would think letting students graduate from high school at the end of tenth grade would be a possible solution. We would then provide them with two or three more years of schooling in which they would choose a track leading either to college work or to job training of some sort. Big obstacle? Athletics.

    I'd also like to see students "fast track" their middle school work so that they could, if they chose to do the extra work, finish four years in only three years. There is no point in holding the really smart kids back so they track along with the middle of the pack kids.
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    teacherjenn4 Posts: 4,005, Reputation: 468
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    #17

    Jun 9, 2022, 07:08 AM
    I teach at a STEM school. We guide our students to careers in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math beginning in Kindergarten. The important thing that we do as teachers is to show our students what they need to succeed in any career. Life skills are so important, and no matter what they choose to do, they need math and reading skills. Many of our students choose middle and high schools that offer specific vocational areas and the classes they need to meet their goals. These schools exist here in California. It’s exciting to watch this type of education grow, and how many students choose that route rather than the usual middle and high schools.
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    jlisenbe Posts: 4,346, Reputation: 156
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    #18

    Jun 9, 2022, 08:21 AM
    It's probably the wave of the future. It'll be interesting to see how it all pans out. The greatest objection I hear is that most kids don't really know what they want to do when they are preteens. For that matter, many don't know when they are juniors or seniors.

    I envy you, Jenn. Wish I could still do it. It's a great career.
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    teacherjenn4 Posts: 4,005, Reputation: 468
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    #19

    Jun 9, 2022, 02:59 PM
    “I envy you, Jenn. Wish I could still do it. It's a great career”

    I’m just about finished with my career. It’s way more difficult than it used to be and parents just aren’t parenting anymore. They don’t want to hear anything other than sunshine and roses about their child. Discipline is almost impossible for principals to give, and did I mention that I had to potty train 9 students this year? I’m going to try one more year, then make the final decision.
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    jlisenbe Posts: 4,346, Reputation: 156
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    #20

    Jun 9, 2022, 03:15 PM
    did I mention that I had to potty train 9 students this year?
    Pre-K???

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