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Remedial Education
(soaring percentage need make-up courses in college,
while grade inflation explodes in high schools AND colleges)
a section of the Education Report chapter
of the Grandfather Economic Reports

by Michael Hodges

Graduation Hat

GOAL: The best quality in the world, without any doubt !


Excessive percentage of college freshmen require remedial work,
because they did not learn the basics in high school

This is additional evidence of public high school failure
to assure their diplomas have meaning

Where is the accountability and disciplinary action regarding secondary schools?

What do parents & taxpayers think about this shameful performance?

And - how are school districts, administrators and teachers
required to 'pay' the price?

The Grandfather Economic Reports is a series of picture reports of threats to the economic future of families and their children, compared to prior generations. You are now at the brief section on Remedial Education, a part the Education Chapter of the Economic Reports. We hope you will find useful information to help you and your loved ones.

Dramatic evidence of poor output quality of high schools > > "of the 12 California state university colleges, 60% of students need remediation; a Florida study showed at least 70% of recent high school graduates need remedial courses when they enter community college - - in other words, they need to learn material they should have mastered in public high school - but did not - - costing an extra $59 million per year." Source: USA Today, pg. 14A, November 24, 1997.

That averages out to two-thirds of high school diplomas are bogus - even to attend less demanding state and community colleges.

'This year, of those students graduating in the top third of their high school classes, 64% of freshmen entering the California university system failed entry-level math tests; 43% failed the verbal exam. Even at the elite University of California, where entry competition is tremendous (meaning the very best grade averages from high schools, top of class, etc.), 35% of entering freshmen needed remedial classes. Many argue that the business of colleges should be providing college courses, not teaching students what they should already know. In New York, where 87% of students entering the City University require remedial courses, Mayor Guiliani has proposed removing remedial work from CUNY curriculum. Massachusetts is one of four states now considering charging back to high schools the costs of remedial courses for their graduates.' USA Today, May 12, 1998, page 13A.

And the trend will continue. Here's a very current example: "In 1998, 70% of Florida's 10th graders scored below the basic reading level. Only half of our students graduate from high school." (quotes from June 1999 newsletter by State Representative Mark Ogles to his constituents).

This is additional evidence to the fact U.S. 12th graders continue to score at the bottom of a long list of other nations in the International Math and Science Test Series - - a shocking result without improvement - - despite smaller class sizes and higher spending per student than other nations.

There is a long list of reasons, including poor textbooks and teaching methods.

And Grade Inflation is rampart - - in high schools and colleges.

Author note: Nothing less than 100% free market economic competitive pressure (in my view) will cause school districts to shape up.. Perhaps high school administrators should be fined for poor performance since such lack of quality is effectively 'stealing' from the young generation.

The above further backs-up the statement from a famous Nobel laureate: 'Today's school quality is the worse in 35 years," and that of the OECD - "U.S. schools are mediocre, at best."


  1. States (and each local school board) should annually collect and publish the percentage of graduates that require remedial courses, and estimate the costs in incurred by students and parents - - and publish the results to parents.
  2. Public and private colleges should charge back to the graduating high school district all costs associated with remedial courses, as well as notify a parent of each student involved.
  3. Local school boards should obtain the data from items 1 and 2, and take appropriate disciplinary action regarding the offending administrators - - including reprimands, financial penalties, and dismissal. Record of said actions should be public information.
  4. Government-backed student loans and grants should not be allowed for any student requiring remedial courses. They should make up that missed in high school prior to going to college - - or, go to college on their own money.


Do members of your local school board, and most parents in your district, know the above data about your schools? Why not?



  1. To the starting page of the Education Report chapter, with its links to other sub-reports concerning education quality trends, shown by color graphics - including its long-term 'education quality productivity index'. If you scan most of the sections in the Education Report chapter you will see clear evidence, in graphic form with hard data, that quality degradation are more the norm in our public school system - - than ever before in history.
  2. or, to the Home Page of the total Grandfather Economic Report series, with its index and graphic presentation comparing economic issues facing today's generation to prior periods, on: Family income, debt, saving; government spending and size, education quality, social security, regulations, inflation, foreign trade and exchange rate, energy, health care, national security, voter turnout and trust, celebration

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| Education Series Home & Contents | Master Economic Report Home & Contents | Summary |
| Feedback | What's New | Link Index | Eye-opener |