June 7, 2023
Important first question: where did the high school classroom come from?
It’s important to remember that the high school classroom essentially didn’t exist until the 20th century. It is in fact a ‘new’ idea / experiment. For example, In 1910, only 18% of U.S. 15- to 18-year-olds were enrolled in a high school and just 9% of all American 18-year-olds graduated. In New Zealand, where I live, we only made high school compulsory for 15 year-olds in 1944! My dad was born in the 40s and so high school in NZ is only as old as my parents!
High school’s ‘Sliding doors’ moment
The film Sliding Doors presents the butterfly effect in regards to the significant impact small moments can have on the future. Whether one makes it through the doors or not, whether one turns right or left can have huge ramifications. The first two decades of 20th century education thinking resulted in one of these moments. In this case, the ‘junction’ presented two paths. Turning right towards Administrative progressivism (Edward Thorndike…