Off the Record

Greta: Let's bring vocational, skills classes back to high school

'Off the Record,' 1/29/15: Obama's free community college program will not be cheap and easy. Simple, smart strategies should fix our educaton system

 

By Greta Van Susteren

Let's all go "Off the Record" for a minute. I just don't get it. Why not simple and cheap solutions that we know work? Instead Washington always goes for the most complex and expensive, which becomes fodder for a political fight.

Case in point, President Obama proposed giving free community college for two years. Don't get me wrong, I'm all in favor of education. But his ideas are complicated and expensive. It will raise your taxes and spark a political fight with the Republicans. That's a recipe for disaster.

So, I have an idea: Let's revive an old idea. It's cheap and worked. Let's bring back skills classes, vocational classes to high schools and expand them. Remember high school shop, where high school students learned auto repair and welding and more? We have jobs for those skills. And how about sort of a modern day home-ec class? We will teach culinary skills. Let's make chefs.

Now, I was in Vietnam last week and went to a school where Samaritan's Purse gives scholarships to learn culinary skills. And in 20 years, the school's 8,000 graduates all got jobs because they learned skills they could use and are skills that are need.

Why don't we do enough of that in our high school? I guarantee, a student gets a higher self-esteem with a skill that he or she can use than sitting in a class reading about self-esteem. So, let's go simple and smart, not complicate it. Let's bring back and expand what really worked. That's my "Off the Record" comment tonight.