Tennessee Governor Urges 2 Free Years of Community College and Technical School

Richard Pérez-Pena, Hack Educa, Feb 10, 2014
Commentary by Stephen Downes

I actually consider it odd that there are separate streams for academic work and for the trades. And so while I support the idea of free community college tuition, I hesitate a bit because it reinforces this divide. If I were in charge of education, I would consider ensuring that everyone has a trade, which they could learn at a community college level by the time they were, say, 15 or 16. Think CEGEP, but started and completed much earlier in life. Those who wanted to go deeper could then begin studies oriented toward academics and theory, all the while reinforcing (and supporting) their academic work with practical application. I'm sure some academics today would think it odd that their education would ever begin with learning a trade, but I find it odd that it wouldn't. Oh yeah, and then 'free community college' would apply to everyone, not just poor people.

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