fweedlepoop asked: Did you like high school growing up? or did just ignore it and do your own thing.
I hated high school, and I was pretty vocal about my distaste. I was what the teachers referred to as “disruptive”. I hardly ever followed the rules, made exceptions for myself at every opportunity, skipped class, cried in the bathroom at lunchtime, and despised who I was. When I told the school counselor that I didn’t know what I wanted to do after graduation, or that I wasn’t even sure if I wanted to go to college, she recommended the military because it was a disciplined environment. I wasn’t violent, I was just.. vocal. Outspoken. Upset. Frustrated. I didn’t take anything seriously. I thought the teachers were a joke, and I was confrontational about assignments and school requirements. I always felt that if I had the opportunity to pursue learning in a way that was constructive for me, that I would take it upon myself and learn with an unquenchable thirst for knowledge. I’m fortunate that it all worked out like that in the end, and there are definitely some teachers to whom I owe an apology. Some were just awful and my skin crawls thinking about them.
If I were to construct my own public school, there would be no more than 14 kids in a class (we usually had ~30), the school system would pay for books for every kid so they had something to take home with them (we had to borrow class copies and, as a result, sometimes could only read in class… if there weren’t enough books we would watch the movie version of the book instead. Fail.) Students would be encouraged to create rather than consume. Tests would be used as a marker of progress, not a determination for a grade point average - if someone is doing poorly on a test it’s because they need additional time to absorb or learn the information, and they should not feel discouraged by the competitive peer pressure of being the best in the class. Everyone would be required to be involved in some kind of after-school program or club. School would happen year-round with breaks built in-between short semesters, getting rid of the counterproductivity that is a 3-month summer vacation.
I’m not sure if it’s any better now, but I went in with a freshman class of 900 and graduated with about 323 students. Enduring a 60% drop-out rate is not exactly the most stimulating environment for anyone. My freshman year our principal sat us down in the auditorium and said “look around you. Two of the people sitting next to you won’t make it to graduation.” How is that for motivation? He quit after 3 years.