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  • Writer's pictureJoanne Jacobs

Reinvent high school, but how?

Photo: Jeswin Thomas/Pexels

Fordham's 2022 Wonkathon is looking for ideas on how to reinvent high school: What policy barriers get in the way?

If we all agree that college-for-all is a mistake, should schools drop college-prep requirements to make time for career courses and work-based learning? "Should we drop foreign language class requirements, arts or physical education mandates, or newer requirements for civics or financial literacy courses?" (What about ethnic studies requirements?)

Other possibilities:

Replace credits with "mastery learning?"
Change school funding to support students learning outside their schools.
Rethinking teacher licensure rules, especially in non-college-prep pathways.
Reforming college entrance requirements.

Send your ideas -- 800 to 1,200 words -- no later than Nov. 30 to Brandon Wright, Fordham’s editorial director, at

Many students are "sleep-walking" through high school, as Fordham puts it. Since schools closed, many are not in high school at all, while others are not motivated to show up consistently and do the work.

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