Changing majors: Almost every college student considers it. Classes are getting too hard, too boring or maybe, in the process of exploring the different avenues required by the core curriculum, a student decides there is another course of study that is more interesting.
There’s nothing wrong with changing majors. Who can really be sure of what to do at 18? The indecision around choosing a major can stretch the college experience from four years into five or even six.
Imagine having to make a similar choice in high school. For some, it would be hard to say whether he or she would be in college right now or still be struggling with an ill-advised choice made at 14.
According to an Associated Press report released Wednesday, Florida Gov. Jeb Bush has developed a proposal that would require high school freshmen to declare a major.
Under the plan, students would declare a major in one of a variety of general fields, such as math, science or English and also be required to declare a minor. He or she would have to complete a set of classes in a major field of study along with courses required by the core curriculum and electives.
Bush said the plan would make school more interesting and help prepare students for the realities of life after graduation. In turn, Bush said, dropout rates would fall.
While efforts like Bush’s to improve the education system should be applauded, requiring 14-year-olds to know what path to go down is the wrong way to go about it. How realistic and grounded are the goals of a high school freshman filled with dreams of being an athlete or the next big pop star?
High school is a time for teenagers to find out about themselves – learn their likes and dislikes and decide where to go from there. The idea behind a high school education should be to open minds to different possibilities, not to mold minds to fit into a particular line of work.
News editor Mike Dwyer for the editorial board