Does college prep (still) matter?

by Adam Dubé, Head of School

Over the past several years, there has been quite a bit written about the demise of higher education and the benefits of attending college. There are, not surprisingly, compelling arguments written from both sides of this divide. While some argue that college is little more than a mechanism for “signaling”, others point out that the lessons learned in college go well beyond the taught curriculum. A third argument is that the advent of online learning and the marshaling of technology resources on behalf of the learner will simply render obsolete college as we know it. Certainly, we can see this battle being played out in our own community with the reduction of state funding for our land grant university.

An increasingly globalized world, powerful new technologies, and the rapidly changing needs of employers and the skillsets their employees must possess lead to the conclusion that college is not immune to the changes that affect so many other aspects of our world. If this is true, then does college prep still matter?

I would argue that it does, increasingly so. As schools prepare students for what is an uncertain future career, the foundation upon which future skills are built becomes increasingly important. A liberal arts curriculum with an emphasis on science, math, languages, and social studies, and an equally robust emphasis on social/emotional learning is critical in preparing for college as it is today, but also as it could be (or not) in the future. If college changes, or goes away altogether, then the preparation students receive at CIS only increases in importance, rather than decreases.

In my next post, I will explore this topic further and the ways in which CIS is specifically preparing students for this multifarious world they will inherit.