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No, I do not mean that you passed by using the double negative of "failing to fail." This story, California Will Give Free High School Diplomas To Kids Who Flunked Out is about how California may be granting High School diplomas to about 249,000 students who failed the CASHEE (California High School Exit Exam). First of all, it's 8th grade material, second you only need a 55% score to pass. Second, if I scored 55% on a test, I'd have been beaten to within an inch of my life. That level shows no mastery of the material. 55% can be explained by eliminating the most outrageous answer and randomly picking from what choices remained.

A diploma is a certificate that the bearer possesses a standardized level of knowledge. To give an 18-year-old a certificate that indicates they have a minimum level of skills they were supposed to know as a 14-year old is a very low standard. To not be able to meet that level and still possess that certificate surpasses the level of negligence on the part of our educators.

I am personally dismayed about how little the young adults who are pushed out of the school system actually know. They might have knowledge, they might have facts, however they generally lack practical skills.

I have been thinking about this, and I have compiled a list of practical life skills that a young adult needs to know when out by themselves in the world. This list is in no way complete.

They are, in no particular order:

  • Develop and follow a financial budget.
  • Balance a bank account.
  • How to purchase groceries.
  • How to prepare a balanced meal.
  • How to wash clothes.
  • How to clean and maintain their living space.
  • How to perform minor household repairs.
  • How to budget their time (work/play, arrive early, etc).
  • How to be interviewed for a job.
  • How to perform minor clothing repairs.
  • How to set a life goal and intermediate goals.

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