Students should consider post high school education

If you pick up most any tangible item you will see it was made in Mexico or China.

More and more we see labor exported from the United States to countries where labor costs are cheaper.

If you followed the GM bailout story a few years ago, it became obvious to all (including the labor unions) they would have to make deep cuts to remain a solvent company.

GM could no longer pay a worker $100 per hour to turn a wrench when other foreign companies were building cars just as good, if not better, for cheaper.

This resulted in new workers to GM making massive concessions in their hourly pay and benefits, or otherwise risk not having a job at all because the company folded under an unsustainable financial path.

Very few products are made in the United States anymore.

However you feel about this, it is what it is. Most of the materials to build electronics are either made in China or assembled there.

However, the technology and schematics needed to produce these items comes from the United States.

So what does this mean for our kids?

Kids today need skills that will help them compete in a work force that requires more education than all previous generations combined.

In fact, every high school student should be planning on some type of post-high school education.

Not every student will attend a four-year institution, nor do they need to, but they will need some type of marketable skill set beyond high school to render them competitive in today's work force.

Currently, 8 percent unemployment amounts to approximately 2.4 million unemployed Americans. What is striking to me is unemployment for post-high school educated workers is at 4 percent, essentially cutting that number in half.

Things are hard enough for everyone right now, but being uneducated and jobless at the same time is devastating. As the disparity between the educated and uneducated grows, so will the gap between rich and poor.

Colin Taylor is superintendent of San Jon schools. Contact him at:

ctaylor@sanjonschools.com

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