This post is about helping teens prepare for post-secondary education and their careers.
I caught Pinterest fever about six weeks ago and I have yet to find a cure. Pinterest allows one to post pictures found on the Internet and those from their computer. Pictures, along with brief descriptions, are posted in categories. Follwers can repin the image and or comment on yours. I created a category which I named Books Worth Reading. Yesterday I posted an image of Kenneth Gray's book, Getting Real: Helping Teens Find Their Future. In the description I wrote one of the dumbest statements I've ever written online: "This book is a tad expensive, but still worth it."
Write much more than a few sentences in a Pinterest description and you'll lose the reader. The staggering amount of images being uploaded now just about guarantees you'll get no longer than a two second look. I am going to leave my comment anyway, and elaborate here for those interested in their kids' future.
The book Getting Real is a spotlight on a mind boggling economic problem in the U.S. But even more important than that, it illuminates a pathway for parents and those intested in helping teens, toward post-secondary and career success. Here's a quick look at the economic problem:
For every 100 students who enter 9th grade, 70 graduate from high school. Of those 70, 21 go directly to work. The other 49 go to college. Of those 49, approximately 25 drop out. Of the 24 who graduate from college, 12 find commensurate employment. And most of this information is based on facts prior to 2008!
Aside from the obvious, I'm not concerned about numbers here. I'm concerned about Danny. Danny goes to public high school. He struggles and has below average grades. His parents are divorced and his dad is not a part of his life. His mom, who works 50 hours per week and has little time for him, his guidance counselor and all of his relatives think he should go to college. As Danny enters 12th grade, he has absolutely no idea what he wants to do in life. He knows that he can carry a C average this year and graduate. He figures he'll go to community college and figure it all out.
What do you suppose Danny's chances are of making one of those 12 kids who graduates from college and finds work commensurate with his education?
Here's the thing. With early preparation and career direction, Danny could eliminate wheel-spinning, confusion, the needless waste of time and money, and settle in an occupation that's both in demand and one that will support himself and or family. The key is preparation. And armed with Kenneth's book here, it will not cost much more than time. Kenneth's pathway is doable. It makes so much sense that I can't understand why his book isn't more popular.
Getting Real is about fifteen bucks more than your average paperback book. A tad expensive? There is no relationship to fifteen extra bucks and your child's future. Even if you half-heartedly applied the information here, you and or your kids will still be thousands and thousands of dollars ahead.
Books worth reading on my Pinterest board.