The Left likes to claim a monopoly on education, but this latest story reinforces what we’ve known for a long time: it’s not because they care one bit for the concept of learning.
The Daily Wire reports that California State Chancellor Timothy P. White has announced that the state university system will no longer require incoming college freshmen to take placement exams or (if need be) remedial courses as far as English or mathematics are concerned.
The new protocol, which will go into effect in fall 2018, “facilitates equitable opportunity for first-year students to succeed through existing and redesigned education models,” White wrote in a memorandum to the system’s 23 campus presidents, who will be responsible for working with faculty to implement the changes. The hope is that these efforts will also help students obtain their degrees sooner — one of the public university system’s priorities. Cal State has committed to doubling its four-year graduation rate, from 19% to 40%, by 2025.
Yeah, why would students have to jump through these hoops? Just because (per the LA Times) 40% of freshmen each year “are considered not ready for college-level work,” necessitating those remedial classes? The Daily Wire’s Elliott Hamilton notes that the Public Policy Institute of California puts that number twice as high, 8 out of 10 students. Even so, “only 16% of those students acquire either a skill certificate or finish a two-year degree within six years.”
Clearly, something in the UC system needs an overhaul…then again, putting in all that work might suggest the universities are focusing too much on other things (like, say, “gender studies” or “social justice”) at the expense of core curriculum, or — heaven forbid — it might reveal that sainted educators aren’t doing a good enough job. Better to just throw out the requirements entirely.
As Hamilton explains, this is a recipe for disaster:
These examinations are utilized to determine how capable an individual is when performing specialized tasks that require a certain degree of understanding of the English language and of mathematics. In a highly technical world, more students are moving toward careers in engineering, statistics, and other topics that first require a foundational understanding of mathematics. In addition, possessing command of the English language is paramount to communicating information. Those placement exams are necessary for seeing how much students need to improve and gives students an opportunity to pursue their education appropriately as opposed to rigging the system to circumvent the process.
Calexit can’t come soon enough.