Housekeeping: A subject that has had its day. – The young | Directory Mayhem

Do you know how to properly prepare a meal? Do you know how to raise children and run a household? How about sewing a button back onto a shirt? How do you take out a loan? Something to do with insurance? Although answers will vary from person to person, the vast majority of high school students will graduate without critical knowledge of the above topics. Home economics is a neglected subject in today’s educational standards. It seems that schools primarily prioritize students’ academic success while unknowingly leaving them in the dark when it comes to life skills.

Schools provide classes to prepare students academically for college and to pass the tests they take at the end of the unit. Home Economics is a class that provides students with useful real-world skills that are just as important as academic skills.

Home Economics would teach students how to adequately prepare a meal, cleanliness in the home and individually, and all things finance related. At a youthful and impressionable age, children and young people should be coached through life courses they need to survive. Although there are cooking classes, a child and family development class, an accounting class, and a few other electives here at Ludlow High School, none of these are required and some of these are difficult to obtain due to the oversupply of students. When demand for cooking classes is high, a mandatory e-housekeeping class can solve this problem.

“School prepared us to enjoy life, but not to stay alive.”

Sofie Vital, a current senior, believes school has only scratched the surface of important life skills, while the focus is primarily on job skills. “School prepared us to enjoy life, but not to stay alive.”

Vital suggested that mandatory home economics classes be included “in a six-month course with a gym” so that all students could take part. She explains that the classes could be boring, but “everyone would benefit from it later in life and apply what they learned.”

A non-mandatory life skills course would be insufficient, “I do band and have a busy schedule of AP and honors courses,” says Sofie. Many students who engage in year-round electives will never find the time to learn skills that will transform and enhance their lives.

Although Sofie was fortunate to have help from her family, she mentioned that “it would be highly insensitive and ignorant to think that everyone has a stable home” to teach life skills to young people.

On a scale of 1-10, Vital feels she currently scores a 3/10 for overall willingness and independence in her future. However, life is unpredictable, with Sofie claiming that “even if we know the basics, our whole life could fall apart”.

Sofie Vital – who is currently a high school student – expresses concern that she and her peers are unprepared for their future due to a lack of life skills, proving that even older people have had similar problems.

“I don’t even know if what I’m doing now will ever be right”

Abigail Magee, a junior college graduate of Ludlow High School, is in the same boat as Sofie. When asked if the school prepared her for her future after graduating in 2020, she responded with a resounding “not at all.” She’s bought a car and has applied to colleges and jobs since graduating, all thanks to her own research and the help of her parents.

“Every day I find myself learning new things that I feel like I should have known years ago,” Magee said when asked about her life skills knowledge. She feels that lack of knowledge has put her behind others. “If LHS had offered Home ec I don’t think I would have worried too much about my first job at 19 – which was postponed much later than I care to admit.”

Even as a graduate, Abigail firmly believes home economics should be compulsory in schools. Some people struggle to grasp the skills that keep them alive and well. Magee took a nutrition class in her senior year and described it as “not very in-depth” but it definitely gave her a “broader understanding of nutrition and health.”

Whether or not LHS will consider adding a home economics class to our curriculum, Abby mentioned that not only should school prepare you, but parents and guardians should also play an important role. However, she insisted more on the idea that schools provide the education. “Everyone should get at least a basic education in life skills in schools,” as families may not find the time.

“My parents are busy with work and taking care of the house and my sister and I,” she said. Families don’t have the time to teach skills when they need to perform them the way they do best. “I wish the school had offered at least something small for us students.” The lack of expertise in life skills is very demeaning. “I don’t even know if what I’m doing now is ever right,” Abby said. On a scale of 1-10, she and Sophie are at the same end of the spectrum, around a 3 or 4.

It’s not just high school and college students who worry about how to make things right in their future, parents worry about their own children, too. Some of those parents might have taken a handful of life skills classes back then, and continuing with those classes might make it easier for them by not forcing them to teach their kids everything they learned.

No time for parents

Sally Magee, mother of two daughters who have seen LHS firsthand (one a graduate while the other is a student), compared her high school experience of learning life skills to that of her daughters.

After graduating from high school in 1990, Sally Magee did not take home economics classes but took accounting classes and learned the basics. Cooking and insurance were left to her. “Back when you turned 18, you were thrown in the water and left to your own devices. Kids couldn’t stay on their parents’ insurance,” Magee explained. Her mother often made dinner, but she was far too busy with work to take the time to teach her.

“Experience is the best teacher,” stressed Sally when asked whether home EC should be made compulsory in schools. She believes it should definitely be required, but “sometimes it’s good to learn the hard way”. Life throws obstacles in everyone’s path, no one can always be prepared for everything.

“As a mother, nothing is more important to me than the well-being of my children,” Magee said affectionately after being asked if she’s concerned about her children’s life skills or not. She insisted that schools “should always have time” to offer life skills. She is confident about how she taught her children to write checks, cook properly and clean the house effectively.

Although Sally has taken time to raise her children despite her busy schedule, she firmly believes that families should not be the ones who should be forced to teach their children financial skills. “The way the world is now, parents are busy with work and kids with extracurricular activities,” she said. There is almost absolutely no time left for families to teach and learn during the day.

“It’s difficult to find enough time during the day to sit down and have dinner as a family,” Sally Magee said dejectedly. She insisted that, in the interest of busy parents, schools should offer these important classes to take some of the strain off parents.

Home Economics: A class that teaches children everything they need to survive. Some may never think it’s that important until they live in a dorm across the country and have no idea how to sew a button back onto their favorite pair of jeans. Many college students lose a significant amount of money ordering food because they don’t know how to cook it themselves. High schools strive to prepare students for a future career, they must strive to prepare them to fend for themselves and maintain a financially stable and healthy lifestyle.

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