Universal schooling beyond 15 has always been a foolish idea

Jordan Peterson explains. The Prussian barracks-cum-feminine kindy is especially bad for boys.
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31 Responses to Universal schooling beyond 15 has always been a foolish idea

  1. Ed Case says:

    Grade 8 in Queensland was Primary School until 1964, when the Grade 7s and Grade 8s started the same year.
    Passing the Scholarship Exam was required to attend High School until 1963.

    Once Scholarship ended, half to three quarters of new High School students were just droogs wasting everyone else’s time.

  2. Fat Tony says:

    Grade 8 in Queensland was Primary School until 1964, when the Grade 7s and Grade 8s started the same year.

    Not quite sure what the second half means, but up til around 1963, Grades 7 & 8 were regarded as “Intermediate” not Primary, which was Grades 1 to 6 inclusive.

  3. Ed Case says:

    There wasn never ‘Intermediate’ in Qld.
    ’63 was the last byear of Grade 8 at Primary, in 1964 Grade 7 and Grade 8 of 1963 went to high School.
    Up to 1963, only those that passed Scholarship went to Grade 9 at High School.

  4. Fat Tony says:

    There wasn never ‘Intermediate’ in Qld.

    Funny – my dad was head of the intermediate at Dalby state school up til beginning of 1963.

  5. Christine says:

    In Queensland, Primary School
    then Secondary School

    Intermediate might have been third year of high school, in another state

  6. Fat Tony says:

    Intermediate might have been third year of high school, in another state

    Up til around the end of 1962 in Queensland State Schools:

    Primary grades 1 to 6

    Intermediate grades 7 & 8 (Scholarship) – at Dalby (Queensland) the Intermediate was located at the Dalby High School

    Junior (9 & 10) and Senior (11 & 12) were High School

  7. Ed Case says:

    I have solved the mystery.
    A High School was built in Dalby in 1954
    At the time of the official opening the high school had an enrolment of 49 students in Form III and 21 in Form IV, and the manual training block had not yet been built. Grades 7 and 8 would transfer to the new school when the intermediate school building was completed.

    Grade 8 moved to the intermediate school at the new high school in 1956, followed by Grade 7 in 1957

    However, the intermediate section only operated from 1956 to 1963. Grade 8 became part of the high school in 1964; and in 1965 Grade 7 returned to the state school.
    Link, Dalby
    State School

  8. Bluey says:

    Suppose it depends a bit on the standard taught. Things my parents were taught in high school is now largely university level courses.

  9. C.L. says:


    I was interested in what people think of Peterson’s obvious scepticism of how we warehouse youngsters for 17 years.

  10. Fat Tony says:

    However, the intermediate section only operated from 1956 to 1963.

    Which was about the period my dad was head of the intermediate at Dalby (end of 62)

  11. Ed Case says:

    12 0r 13 years at School is way too long a time to learn how to do stuff.

    The pace is so slow, to accomodate the dummies, that most with potential become dummies too, after a while.

  12. Fat Tony says:

    Back in the 50s / 60s when I went to school, grades 11 & 12 were for the academically inclined.

    The kids who became tradies or shoppies, left either at the end of grade 9 or 10.

    This system seemed to work quite well – at least the little shits weren’t forced to keep going to school and making their own “entertainment” disrupting the others.

  13. rosie says:

    I agree CL.
    My youngest wasted the last three years at school. I was quite happy for him to leave and get an apprenticeship but he wanted to finish with his friends, and I was told getting an apprenticeship without a driver’s licence was well nigh impossible anyhow.
    Then it was a year at McDonalds before he finally decided to try a trade.
    My older three were all academically inclined and would have completed year twelve even if they were living in the seventies.

  14. Albos Toss says:

    CL we are all special, unique and can achieve anything we want. Everyone needs to have a Uni degree. It matters not what the degree is in. How else will the youth of the West learn the importance of DEI and the finer points of intersectionality.
    Since the mid to late 80s more and more women have been fooled into thinking that they have to work. Now they actually do in order for a family to survive. (don’t get me started on married man’s tax of old or income sharing between spouses)
    Around that same time there was a push for everyone to finish senior. At my high school they actually had to build a special curriculum for the knuckle draggers who should have been labourers or for the smart ones that weren’t good with books, trades. The extra two years did bugger all for them but it did mean our first 15 had a bloody good forward pack.
    I think the main reason all kids are in high school and then shoehorned into some degree is that there are most manufacturing work has been outsources to the third world where wages are low and carbon emissions can be hidden. Trades are making a comeback as a viable career. A lot of young fellas and a few lasses are seeing the income disparity between even the lower trades and their bullshit degree.
    What is considered a trade needs updating though. There are a lot of jobs that are now uni degree or diploma that should be 3 year apprenticesgips with a bit of tafe. Childcare comes to mind.

  15. Albos Toss says:

    Please excuse the formatting and errors. Tapping away on my phone whilst enjoying the early morning joys of Fatherhood.

  16. Mantaray says:

    My lived experience is as follows….in Sydney…at a public / state school…t

    First 4 years Infants School (called Kindergarten, Upper kindergarten, then First Class and Second Class…these latter two an A stream and a B stream; THIRTY-FORTY kids in each). Primary School Classes 3-6, each an A and a B stream. Infants and Primary in separate blocks

    NO WAREHOUSING after that since only three of us were sent to a selective high school (First Form-Sixth Form) with the stated goal of making “something of yourself”. The rest (about SEVENTY KIDS) went to high schools where there was either NO 5th and 6th Form (ie School Certificate but no Higher School Certificate possibility. Most left at 15 or so, to work), the others to high schools where most left after School Cert, but with a limited programme for the “smarter “few to continue to HSC, then maybe Uni.

    Thus, only maybe 10-15% got schooling after 15 or so. These (almost) all went on to UNI. NO WAREHOUSING.

    BTW: The Director General of education who ran all this is NSW was an Old Boy of the High School. In 1971 Sir Garfield Barwick (Old Boy) reviewed the Cadet passing out parade, In 1975 Sir John Kerr (Old Boy) opened the new School Wing. In November 1975 Sir Garfield and Sir John (Old Boys) together gave Goof Witless the arse, which made us all (teachers and students) very proud! Later, when quizzed about his shady dealings with various rogues, another Old Boy was heard to say “I don’t give a F*ck. Boys like us Don’t Cry!” School Motto (in Latin) Every Man is the Maker of his Own Destiny. Nifty was correct, as the Blazer Pocket Embroidered Motto declared him to be.

  17. MatrixTransform says:

    I suspect JP is correct.

    still, the regimen didn’t work on me.

    as a cohort, we were effectively farmed through a tech school as grist for the local steel mill and refinery. The mill itself was regimented as well.

    luckily I never bought their bullshit completely.
    they only owned my body from the neck down.

    universities at the time were bent toward producing thinkers and leaders

    the process works beautifully at the pointy end for those with the luxury or time and money to reach the pinnacle. (apologies to those who had to sacrifice and struggle to get up there)

    all of us in servitude to a higher principle; for good, for the future.
    worked well when indeed the effort was for a genuinely lofty purpose.

    it may have once been a benevolent fascist lean-in
    but what it’s become is a marxist’s wet-dream

    started to fall apart about 20 year ago
    stumbled and barely recovered about 10 years ago
    tripped and broke a hip about 3 years ago

    look at the near universal lockstep-brainwaves now
    re: climate, energy, ukraine, gender, freedom, vaxx, free speech etc

    The road to hell is paved with good intentions

    21st century dark-ages

    enjoy your Bug Mac

  18. Ed Case says:

    Dickens’ opinion was that the Universities were dark, satanic mills.
    At the time the only subjects studied were Latin, Greek & Hebrew.

  19. Christine says:

    There were no “little shits” at my secondary school – the Sisters simply wouldn’t allow them to show themselves.
    School years were spoiled by excessive homework.
    I got a job I badly wanted because I’d done four years of Latin; that was purely down to the interviewer himself having struggled with the language. Sort of odd.
    Yes, I agree – too long to be at school.
    I like most of what Jordan Peterson says.

  20. Petros says:

    The German system seemed to work well. Have a technical highschool for the pupils that were not academically that successful. Big companies would have many of them as apprentices during this time. No doubt they identified the better ones and offered them jobs at the end. From memory, Bosch had something like 10000 of them at a time.

  21. Ed Case says:

    Here’s another issue:
    Compulsory education segregates children to those of it’s own age and maybe a year either way.
    Then when they go to work, it might be with people 45 years older and there’s no one there that they know, o9r even close to their age.

  22. Nix says:

    Is it possible that Petersen’s drug addiction wiped his memory? Or even addled his brain? He is after all a product of the system himself. Biggest load of nonsense he has uttered, and that’s saying something.

  23. C.L. says:

    So you’re saying “the system” produced a drug abuser?

  24. Petros says:

    Don’t keep us in suspense, Nix. Articulate why it’s a load of nonsense.

  25. MatrixTransform says:

    Is it possible that Petersen’s drug addiction wiped his memory?


    is it possible that ad hom is the only refuge of the truly stupid?

  26. Nix says:

    Petros, it requires very little effort. Childish analogies and imagery. Like the assumption that Prussian culture was universally authoritarian, silly assumptions about rows of desks and an endless amount of made up assertions would be a start. But essentially the notion that kids shouldn’t be encouraged to complete schooling is of itself an attack on community. I’m certain he didn’t suggest this to his own family. It’s just performstive horseshit.

  27. Boambee John says:


    It might be a bit subtle for you, but there is a difference between ‘encourage’ and ‘force’.

  28. Petros says:

    You clearly didn’t go to a school where half the boys in grades 11 and 12 didn’t want to be there and would have been better off learning a trade, which many of them later did.

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