FIxing Our Fruitless Curriculum


Yeabsira Getachew, Co-Editor-in-Chief

Have you ever taken a required class that catered to your career path of choice? How about one that actually interested you and where you felt like the content would come up in your future? While I can think of a few electives that have met this criteria, I can’t think of one required class where I have felt that way.

The feeling that classes we are required to take are unnecessary is one I know all too well. I am a humanities girl; I prefer more writing-based and social studies focused classes. For me, STEM classes are boring. Precalculus and Chemistry were almost the death of me. I understand that some basic level of coursework in a broad range of classes is necessary for adult life. I do believe that Algebra 1, English classes, and a bit of social studies can definitely help in daily life.

Even so, I wish we were able to pick a possible career path as a freshman in high school, and then take classes completely tied to that. It would allow us to test the waters of a possible career path before committing to it entirely at the next level. Going into college while being unsure of what you want to study can actually be a financial strain. One of my CollegeTracks advisors told me that switching your major to something more technical than your initial major could add hundreds to your semesterly tuition cost. So, in addition to helping students be more focused and invested in their courses, this could save us thousands of dollars in wasted coursework on a major we may be on the fence about. Through high school pathways, we could identify an area of focus and the courses in that, enabling us to determine whether we want to further our study in that area in college.

Creating a system with pathways would also combat educational equity issues. Since there would be standard pathways for a range of studies in all schools, no students would be at a disadvantage. Another benefit would be the shift in enthusiasm for school. When I go to school knowing we are doing something that spikes my interest in class, I am actually motivated to go. Alternately, going to school with no excitement feels like a chore. School is a privilege, but it should not have to feel like a burden.