California Reports Eighth-Grade Dropout Rate for First Time

Howard Blume, Los Angeles Times, August 12, 2011

An overlooked corner of the dropout problem became more visible Thursday when state officials for the first time released the dropout rate for eighth-graders.

Statewide, about 3.5% of eighth-graders–17,257 in all–left school and didn’t return for ninth grade, according to the state count now available with a system for tracking students individually.

{snip}

Overall, 74.4% of California high school students graduated in four years, according to state data; 18.2% dropped out. The remainder were still in school (6.6%), were in non-diploma programs for disabled students (0.5%) or left high school by taking the General Educational Development (GED) Test (0.4%).

Steep gaps persist in the comparative fates of different ethnic groups. The graduation rate is 68% for Latinos, 59% for African American students and 56% for students who are learning English. This compares with 83.4% for whites and 89.4% for Asians.

“The data reveal the sad truth about our state’s four-year graduation rates and California’s failure to adequately serve all of our students,” said Arun Ramanathan, executive director of Education Trust-West, an Oakland-based advocacy organization.

{snip}

He said dropping out is the culmination of a problem that probably has been building for years. Students who are behind in reading skills by the third grade, or nonnative speakers who don’t make the transition from Spanish to English, can fall increasingly behind in all their subjects. And there is pressure in some families to earn money rather than stay in school.

{snip}

L.A. Unified’s estimated graduation rate for the four-year period is 55%. However, the state’s new system places the district’s rate at 64.2%.

And a broadly adopted formula used by the National Center for Education Statistics credits L.A. Unified with graduating 70.4% of high school students in four years.

{snip}

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  • Anonymous

    “Students who are behind in reading skills by the third grade…”

    Try: students who enter 11th grade with less than third grade skills – period. What can ANY teacher do? I know of what I speak.

    “or nonnative speakers who don’t make the transition from Spanish to English…”

    So how is that ANY teacher’s fault? If Pablo and Marisol REFUSE to learn English, or practice it, how is that MY fault as a teacher?

    I work with tons of Latinos who do REFUSE to learn English. Some blatantly tell us teachers that we need to learn Spanish “because they will be in the majority soon.”

    My Latino students only talk Spanish amongst themselves. They live in 80-90%+ Latino neighborhoods. They listen to Spanish music all day, surf the web in Spanish, see products in the stores with Spanish labels, speak in Spanish with all their relatives and Spanish is used in all the workplaces around here.

    Why should they learn English? It’s a Latino world now in much of the good ‘ol U.S. of A.

  • Question Diversity

    “Diversity” is the best reason, but I have a theory, but I’ll need the help of certain people here who I know to be experts to say whether it has any validity.

    I understand California’s state education bureaucrats want all eighth graders to take and pass Algebra I. I don’t know if they have it as a hard and fast requirement to leave middle school and enter high school. If so, then what could explain this eighth grade dropout rate is that Algebra I is just way too high a wall for most California 13-year olds to scale.

    This obsession with teaching everyone math is a relatively new phenomenon. It is my understanding that even in the 1960s, American high school students only needed to pass Algebra I and Geometry to graduate. Which means you could take Algebra as a junior and Geometry as a senior. Or rather, you had more than one try to pass Algebra and/or Geometry. Teaching Algebra to eighth graders, save the rare gifted student or savant, was unheard of.

  • olewhitelady

    This is simply another example of how blacks and Hispanics cannot compete in the white man’s education programs. Students are given test answers, boosted by cheating teachers, and “passed on”, yet they can’t even drag their trifling selves to school and drape themselves over a desk. I’m really surprised that administrators don’t just lie about the number of pupils they graduate! There must not be any threat or incentive to do so.

  • Whiteman

    They need minority teachers who can mentor them and relate to them. All students do. All educators understand this but do the best they can.

    If the students are white, however, they need ‘diversity’ and teachers who don’t look and think the way they do. It’s the best cure for their latent of possible bigotry. It’s also ‘bigotry’ when either of these ideas isn’t supported with a proper enthusiasm. ‘Bigotry’ is no small thing nowadays.

  • Anonymous

    2 — Question Diversity at 6:34 PM on August 12:

    I agree with you. I took Algebra as a high school freshman as an elective, because I wanted the challenge. I did terribly. I took it again as a senior and did fine. That was 1970.

  • HH

    Does anyone else find many of those statistics to be more than a little, for lack of a better word, optimistic? Those non-White stats(Asians excepted)seem suspiciously high to me.

  • James Silver

    “Statewide, about 3.5% of eighth-graders—17,257 in all—left school and didn’t return for ninth grade, according to the state count now available with a system for tracking students individually.”

    From which we might conclude that 3% drop out between any two grades in middle school. Mexican contractors often take their young children out of school after the age of 8 or 9 to be their translators so they can communicate with white clientele.

  • Anonymoose

    Here’s a heretical idea. What wrong with going to work early in life, especially if that is accompanied by some continuing education and possible apprenticeship. That was the way of the world from the first days of civilization until recently.

    Throughout history, many people have worked their way up. Some became skilled workers. Others business owners. Some became self-trained engineers. Some became artisans. Some became self-trained intellectuals and writers. Some became business and political leaders. Some tried and failed. Most just worked all their lives with no distinction, but at least with a little self respect and some earned money to spend. Even in the computer age people can still do the same.

    Maybe it’s time to acknowledge that the progressive idea of ever-extended universal education has partially failed. Especially when extortion is used to force it on people, in the form of making people who do not aspire to extended education into social and employment pariahs.

    Maybe some of these minority kids, and some of the troubled white kids also, who do not respond in school would do better in the world of work, and might even begin to assimilate what they were exposed to in the classroom.

    I personally have had a little experience supervising kids in their late teens some of whom stopped attending school shortly after beginning high school. These kids were not illiterate or incapable of doing more than they allowed to do.

    Admittedly, these were white kids. But many probably non-white kids could accomplish something. It might be better to get them under supervision and into the loop than to have them run the streets. At least they could pay for their own cell phones instead of stealing them.

  • Crystal

    By the time many of these black and Latino students get to eighth grade, they have already have been written off by the educational system. The majority of them cannot read at grade level. Some of the Latino students are illegal immigrants and feel that no matter who good they do in school, they cannot do better than their parents. This makes many of them drop out of school.

  • FormerSoCAteacher

    Remember that in Mexico, compulsory education ends after 6th grade. So the Mexicans here think they’re really educated if they get through 8th grade!! The blacks are too busy out there selling and using drugs to even know what grade they’re supposed to be in. The ghetto parents are busy using the welfare checks to buy booze and mac n cheese and Kool-Aid. Nothin’ like a bourbon and Kool-Aid, ya know!! I believe we need a “service law” – as soon as a kid, boy or girl,, turns 18, s/he has to serve 2 years in either the military OR the Peace Corps OR a stateside organization dedicated to hands-on service to the poor. It could bring maturity to a lot of these kids who otherwise waste their lives.

  • olewhitelady

    Question Diversity #2:

    I’m certainly no expert in present-day schools, though decades ago I did teach junior high, and my mother taught grade school throughout her life.

    I did, however, attend high school during the sixties, in a large consolidated institution that offered several curricula of study and four foreign languages. This was in southern WV, so it may have been different from big city schools, but here the only students who were required to take and pass algebra and geometry were those in the college prep and electronics curricula. Other students took general math courses.

    Of course, the educational theories apparently now hold that if one places a low-IQ student in high-math class, his brain will magically grow cells that can absorb and comprehend trig, physics, ets.

  • Tom Iron

    8 — Anonymoose wrote at 12:30 AM on August 13:

    __________________________________

    For the most part, you’re right. When I was a boy, I felt like I was in prison when I went to school. One summer, I got a job working on a farm upstate NY. I loved it, hands on work, outdoors. I knew then that whatever I was going to do in life, it would be outdoors. I was a US Marine and a Structural Ironworker. Both occupations primarily outdoors jobs. I don’t know when it started that we should torture boys and young men with this “school” malarkey. Eigth grade is plenty.

    Tom Iron…

  • Rat in a Maze

    @ Crystal

    By the time many of these black and Latino students get to eighth grade, they have already have been written off by the educational system.

    Not true. These are the very ones the educational system throws billions of dollars directly at to try to help them “catch up.” Billions of educational dollars that are taken away from bright YOUR white child, thrown down a rat hole with the same dismal results decade after decade.

    No amount of money can overcome IQ deficits. Now, good luck trying to get the educational system to believe that axiom.

  • Anonymous

    The reason that all children need to take algebra in the 8th grade is that all children need to be preparing for college.

    The whole K-12 system is now “college prep for all.”

    Can you imagine how humiliating it is for any child of any race to be told over and over again that life is not worth living without a college diploma when no one in his family has ever graduated from high school? When no one in his family can read properly? Of course the schools have a drop out problem.

  • Lucas

    Diversity is our strength but in LA we don’t have diversity. We have an overwhelming LAtino majority in the majority of areas.

    They are not here to be Americans or to assimilate, they are here to make money and reap the rewards that a 1st world nation has to offer. Free schools, emergency rooms, food stamps, WIC, section 8 housing, working “under-the-table” and living under the radar. They don’t buy insurance, they don’t need drivers’ licenses, they pay little or no tax and they get treated just fine at all the different levels of the justice system.

    Until a politician gets a backbone and does the right thing, the legal thing, and the morally correct thing for the American taxpayers we will continue to transform into a mestizo banana republic.

  • Frank

    To former teacher (#10)

    Why would you want to downgrade the military services with young men and women who are too dumb or lazy to get an education? The military is not a dumping ground for those who can’t make it on their own. You have insulted both the military and peace corps.

  • Don

    Whats wrong with being a skilled artisan? Has anyone tried to hire a good carpenter, or bricklayer, or some one to lay decorative concrete? IF you can find one, they are very expensive. You can make a good living doing any of these things. College is not for everyone. Hell, high school isn’t for everyone.

  • Question Diversity

    5, 11, et al.:

    Now, it’s gotten so crazy that the NCTM (last I heard) thinks that even the dumbest 10% of high school students should be able to pass Advanced Algebra (aka College Algebra aka Algebra II) in Senior year, and as a graduation requirement. This puts them at Pre-Alg as Freshmen, Alg I as Soph., Geometry as Jr and Alg II as Sr. Their reasoning is that all high school students need at least that much to be math successes in college. A person who can’t absorb Algebra I until sophomore year probably won’t absorb much more than Alg. I and non-proofs Geometry anyway, and probably shouldn’t even go to college unless they have some capabilities in other areas.

  • Arlington VA Mom

    10 — FormerSoCAteacher wrote at 6:50 AM on August 13:

    …I believe we need a “service law” – as soon as a kid, boy or girl,, turns 18, s/he has to serve 2 years in either the military OR the Peace Corps OR a stateside organization dedicated to hands-on service to the poor. It could bring maturity to a lot of these kids who otherwise waste their lives.

    —————-

    With respect, why do you think my kids should be enslaved to serve “poor” minorities for two years?! Don’t you realize that a “service law” would merely force whites to toil for blacks and hispanics? We must already support them with our taxes, but now we should give them 2 years of our lives as well?

    Do we want reverse-plantations where intelligent, productive white kids are kidnapped en-mass into government work programs by law?! I can’t imagine anything more damaging to the prospects of White America.

  • Sam

    I taught 8th grade Pre-Algebra last year without much success. The students did not understand how negative numbers worked or how to work with fractions. That pretty much eliminates basic one and two step equations which are the basis of all basic Algebra. To make matters worse, they would not do any homework and did very little in class work. They were quick to tell me that I did not know how to teach or how to make math “fun”. Saddest year I have ever spent in my life. The boys (all white) called each other the n-word and the girls were all looking for “their n*****”.

  • John Engelman

    A high dropout rate is something a public school should be proud of. It means that standards are not compromised.

  • Anonymous

    I was never that good with math and sciencies, but I tried just the same. I was a C and B student. I thought that it would be much more useful in life than those token liberal novels they used to make us read, or Geoffery Chaucer, etc. (Although I like his work). I went to an expensive liberal private high school. It was fairly large with about 25 students per class. We had one black teacher, who was actually quite competent and fair. He allowed us to have an opinion if we backed it up with facts. Unfortunately some of my white teachers were virulent liberals who hated any deviation from their agenda. I remember studying physics. There were only six people in the class. The teacher was the hockey coach, and there were only guys in the class. It was fun, like a men’s club. We were allowed some choice in studies. No one could understand why we didn’t want to take another liberal arts class. We still had to take mostly liberal arts…and we had to read “To Kill A Mocking Bird”. That was part of our indoctrination, as it was yours as well. That’s ironic that many California high school students do not have the reading skills to read that simplistic novel.

  • Anonymous

    @Anonymoose:

    You actually have a really good point. If they’re terrible at school and they’re pressured to earn money, apprenticeship does seem like an excellent idea. At least they’re learning something related to whatever they’re going to be doing anyway without feeling that it’s a waste of time.

    A certain level of general education has to be mandatory (arithmetic, language, writing), of course, but does it necessarily have to be all the way up until the end of high school? The rest of us who doesn’t have the same trouble can carry on with regular schooling. National test grades would likely soar if this were to happen. Not to mention that kids who started on whatever trade they pursued would more likely excel in that specialty.

    If they felt the need to go have high school education later in their life, they actually have the opportunity to pursue it here in the US, unlike many other countries.

  • Anonymous

    8 — Anonymoose wrote at 12:30 AM on August 13:

    “Here’s a heretical idea. What wrong with going to work early in life, especially if that is accompanied by some continuing education and possible apprenticeship. That was the way of the world from the first days of civilization until recently.”

    Because it is well known that children are developing physically and if they do repetitive, hard labor type work, they will have many physical problems at far younger ages. A review of the history regarding the 19th century drive for child labor laws would do you good. Aside from the cruelty of forced child labor, the children have no time to be children, and that has also been shown to produce more sociopaths. This is why it requires an education (hopefully) to make policy and why one person should not be allowed to set such policies.

    That said, farms are a bit different. During and up to the Great Depression, most American children grew up on farms. They worked on those farms and usually turned out just fine, both in character and health. But that is because their bosses were their parents who usually loved them and did not treat them as objects for making profits only.

    If we only could have a “renaissance” of common sense.

  • Bazzooma Watkins

    What’s the problem, Frank? Are you saying that Israel’s law requiring EVERY high school graduate to serve 2 years in the military is “insulting the military?” Arrant nonsense. We could and should do it here; those who can’t/won’t cut it will get their rears kicked, as they should be, complete with dishonorable discharge, and those who can make it will render valuable service to the country and gain great maturity as a side benefit. And, for your information, the military IS a primary teaching ground for young people; it always has been and always will be. Take it easy and don’t get huffy – this is a win-win proposition.

  • Anonymous

    20 — Sam wrote at 9:07 PM on August 13:

    I taught 8th grade Pre-Algebra last year without much success. The students did not understand how negative numbers worked or how to work with fractions. That pretty much eliminates basic one and two step equations which are the basis of all basic Algebra. To make matters worse, they would not do any homework and did very little in class work. They were quick to tell me that I did not know how to teach or how to make math “fun”. Saddest year I have ever spent in my life. The boys (all white) called each other the n-word and the girls were all looking for “their n*****”.

    Could you imagine any kid–white or black or latino–acting this way in school towards a teacher? Man, our youth today are lazy, irresponsible, entitlement-minded and don’t understand delayed gratification. They want something now; right this minute.

  • NAVY

    My friend, they have found the formula.

    Give the people a cell phone, a TV, the “feeling” they are participating in the economy and they won’t even think about liberty.

    Billions of pawns, the so-called middle class of China, the “climbing” poor of Brazil, have no idea what the Bill of Rights, the Magna Carta was.

    Their sheer number, like a barbaric horde, will crush the poor Americans, the last people in the world who have some remaining tradition of freedom and individual rights.

    Those third world nouveau-riche folks will burn the constitution for a new TV, bought in 12 installments with a credit card. -Brazilian President Lula.

    The status of California:

    Illegals running the state

    8th grade drop-out rate

    Taxes sky high

    Homosexuals in the park

    Barbara Boxer

    Nanci Pelosi

    Maxine Waters

  • Bon, From the Land of Babble

    The graduation rate is 68% for Latinos, 59% for African American students and 56% for students who are learning English. This compares with 83.4% for whites and 89.4% for Asians.

    This is as it should be!! These are natural, authentic drop-out rates, and for hispanics and blacks are probably FAR too low. Let ’em drop out! Why should we torture and drag hispanics and blacks through a curriculum that makes little sense to them? Most IQs of 80-90 are past topped out by the time they hit 8th grade.

    In a disturbing indication of future levels of productivity, on average, black and Hispanic 12th-graders read worse than white 8th-graders, and there is a similar pattern in math scores. Despite considerable efforts, the achievement gaps have grown wider since the 1990s.

    Imagine all the wasted White tax money poured into black and hispanic achievement!!

    What’s the point? But, as long as the educational system’s dogma is “blank slate”, “IQ is meaningless” and “all children have the same potential to achieve”, as long as the LIE is maintained (heresy is punished harshly!!) the government will continue to look for solutions and pour more money into the educational abyss.

    As an added side note That Must Be Repeated Endlessly: Your White child receives nothing but scorn and contempt from the educational system.

    I understand California’s state education bureaucrats want all eighth graders to take and pass Algebra I… If so, then what could explain this eighth grade dropout rate is that Algebra I is just way too high a wall for most California 13-year olds to scale.

    –QD

    Yes, true, it was tried and the results were dismal. Now, 8th graders either take Algebra I or Algebra Readiness depending on their 7th grade CST scores. To receive high school credit for 8th grade Algebra I, a student must pass the class, pass a district-generated, end-of-course test AND score Advanced or Proficient on the state test (CST).

    A colleague at a large school told me of 300 entering freshmen, only 13 met the criteria for HS credit for 8th grade Algebra I. The rest are shuffled into Algebra I, including special Ed students, and passed around until some soft teacher passes them. Repeat with Geometry and NOW Algebra II. This is the first year the LAUSD has not rescinded the Algebra II requirement for graduation, so as of right now, the class of 2014 MUST pass Algebra I, Geometry and Algebra II.

    There is no such thing as general or basic math, they’ve been eliminated because the school district assumed that blacks and hispanics were being put, on purpose, into lower level math classes while Whites and Asians took Algebra I.

    Now we have Algebra I for ALL. General math, it was assumed, “lowered expectations” i.e., if a kid thought he wasn’t able to do algebra, his self-esteem was lowered and then he would never succeed at anything. Geez, some of the excuses the educational establishment comes up with!!! And, I have to listen to all of these LIES endlessly repeated in teachers’ meetings!! You can’t imagine the headaches I get….

    The students did not understand how negative numbers worked or how to work with fractions. That pretty much eliminates basic one and two step equations which are the basis of all basic Algebra.

    –Sam

    Sad to hear this about White kids! My daughter told me when she was in calculus (11th grade), the teacher slid the board back and there were about 25 easy addition and subtraction problems using negative numbers, such as -5 + -3 = . The math teacher said the problems were for his Algebra I class because they couldn’t seem to “grok” negative numbers. DD said the entire class started laughing because they’d had those same type of problems in the 6th and 7th grade!!

    The whole K-12 system is now ‘college prep for all.’

    –Anon #14

    LoL, you reminded me of a sign I passed a few days ago in a VERY raunchy part of LA. It said College Ready Middle School

    Don’t you believe it!

    Bon

  • Tom Iron

    Let me settle this about the military. I don’t know if people are aware of two points. Number one, it’s been found 75% of our young men are unqualified to serve in the military for a variety of reasons. The second point is the military is changing. The technological advances have rendered so many positions obsolete that not so many personel are needed anymore. So you can forget about the miitary as an option for these surplus men.

    Tom Iron…

  • Anonymous

    “””I work with tons of Latinos who do REFUSE to learn English. Some blatantly tell us teachers that we need to learn Spanish “because they will be in the majority soon.”

    My Latino students only talk Spanish amongst themselves. They live in 80-90%+ Latino neighborhoods. They listen to Spanish music all day, surf the web in Spanish, see products in the stores with Spanish labels, speak in Spanish with all their relatives and Spanish is used in all the workplaces around here.

    Why should they learn English? It’s a Latino world now in much of the good ‘ol U.S. of A.”””

    And yet many conservatives continue to insist we can and will ‘integrate’ these people.

  • Anonymous

    19 — Arlington VA Mom wrote at 8:01 PM on August 13:

    10 — FormerSoCAteacher wrote at 6:50 AM on August 13:

    …I believe we need a “service law” – as soon as a kid, boy or girl,, turns 18, s/he has to serve 2 years in either the military OR the Peace Corps OR a stateside organization dedicated to hands-on service to the poor. It could bring maturity to a lot of these kids who otherwise waste their lives.

    ————————

    “With respect, why do you think my kids should be enslaved to serve “poor” minorities for two years?! Don’t you realize that a “service law” would merely force whites to toil for blacks and hispanics? We must already support them with our taxes, but now we should give them 2 years of our lives as well?

    Do we want reverse-plantations where intelligent, productive white kids are kidnapped en-mass into government work programs by law?! I can’t imagine anything more damaging to the prospects of White America. ”

    Right you are. They want our daughters to work with the “self created” poor so that they can be ravished and/or murdered. Any government attempt at this kind of social program should be met with resistance; armed if necessary.

  • Heather

    I am a math teacher at a private middle school in California. We teach Algebra I to sixth graders, geometry to seventh graders, and Algebra II to eighth graders. There is no “dumbing down” whatsoever. My students average in the 95th percentile on standardized tests and my biggest discipline problem is when kids whisper to each other when the are supposed to be doing classwork, and even that is rare. No student has ever disrespected me to my face. Believe it or not, the school that I teach in is only 15 percent white. The other 85 percent are Asian.

    Asians are the future of California.

  • James Silver

    “I believe we need a “service law” – as soon as a kid, boy or girl,, turns 18, s/he has to serve 2 years in either the military OR the Peace Corps OR a stateside organization dedicated to hands-on service to the poor. It could bring maturity to a lot of these kids who otherwise waste their lives.”

    The military doesn’t want kids from the ghetto who are morally lacking and can’t pass the armed forces aptitude test. And if you impress them into “hands-on” service to other poor, they will simply deal drugs, rape, and commit murder under color of authority.

  • Anonymous

    Re; 17

    You have a very valid point, I gained university degrees in Science and Law and find my career to be tedious and unfulfilling.

    I work for myself part-time doing carpentry and other minor “handy” jobs on boats. The remuneration is good and I get to step back at the end of the day and physically see what I accomplished. Sometmes that’s worth more than the big paycheck.

  • Angry Bird

    Asians are the future of California.

    Dirt-poor, illiterate illegal aliens are the future of California.

    Asians = 13%

    Hispanics = 38%

    Good luck with that.

  • Anonymous

    “I believe we need a “service law” – as soon as a kid, boy or girl,, turns 18, s/he has to serve 2 years in either the military OR the Peace Corps OR a stateside organization dedicated to hands-on service to the poor.

    Absolutely, absolutely not.

    All it would do is subject White young people to the ravages of living among thugs. Ever heard of Job Corps? It is nothing but a reform school for black and hispanic thugs. Most are there by criminal court order; enroll in Job Corps or go to prison. Job Corps facilities are some of the most dangerous prisons in the nation.

    Sending our black and hispanic thugs to the Peace Corps would totally ruin the Peace Corps.

    I for one do not want to pay for these thugs living and educational expenses while they are some sort of national service.

    Do you know who would go to work running any such kind of national service corps? The same kind of people who run ACORN, Code Pink and other radical organizations. Roosevelt’s programs were full of communists. Johnson and Nixon’s were full of young radicals like Bill Ayers.

    Ever heard of Kathy Boudin presently serving life in prison for murder and bank robbery in a jont Weathermen black panther operation? She is a third generation communist by the way. Father was counsel for the ACLU and CPUSA. Oswald asked the Dallas Bar Association to get him to defend Oswald.

    While on the run, Kathy Boudin worked in a Nixon/Carter era war on poverty program in San Francisco. She worked for one of those save the black criminal programs that infested the jail.

    After she went to prison, her son was raised by Bill Ayers and Bernadette Dohrn.

    That is the kind of person who would be hired to run any kind of youth program.

  • white is right, black is whack

    30 — Anonymous wrote at 6:29 AM on August 15:

    ””“I work with tons of Latinos who do REFUSE to learn English. Some blatantly tell us teachers that we need to learn Spanish “because they will be in the majority soon.”

    1. They won’t be a majority, if that. They might be twice the population they are now (now they stand at 15%).

    2. With a growing number of all races in the US growing tired and impatient with their very presence and doing something about it, tell them “good luck” with making us cater to their demands.

    3. If we should learn “Spanish” because they will “be the majority” as they claim, why do they speak English to me when I’m down in Mexico?

    4. Ask them, “Since when do nonwhites in the majority live well off? Why is it that whites, wherever we are and whatever size of the population we are, are better off than latinos or blacks?”

  • Michael C. Scott

    The obvious solution to this problem is to adopt the German educational model in which the lower performers who are never going to make it at a university are shunted into technical schools where they learn a skilled trade.

    The “college prep” high school is certainly not for everyone, but the Usual Suspects will have to get over their “racism” hangups (because we all know exactly who the majority of these vo-tech students will be) before we are allowed to do this in the United States.

    As far as university degrees go, I have a Batchellor’s Degree in chemistry and two Master’s degrees (chemical engineering and history). Some 79 US and foreign patents later, I am a stay-at-home dad who works out of the house building hot rods (mostly for rich dentists, it seems) and as a welder, machinist and general handyman. Today I have the kind of life I thought I was working for back when I was a chemist in the microelectronics industry, with less money, but without any of the stress.