“Oh wait that actually requires you to get off your butt and do something.”
I'm sure you realize that homeschoolers generally get off their butts and do something regarding the educations of their own children in significantly greater amounts than folks who send their kids to traditional schools.
But some of your points are well-taken. I get a little daunted to see posters denigrate the liberal arts on this forum. I actually saw a couple of posters ask when has the study of classics ever been important?
My, my. What ignorance and stupidity. The first western universities were established to teach what we now call the classics, along with philosophy and “natural philosophy” (natural sciences).
But, unfortunately, many public schools no longer do much of a job actually teaching folks much of anything. Unfortunately, the largest school systems, the ones with the most kids, often educate the least, not that there aren't exceptions even within otherwise-poor systems.
JenB is right to say that at least an introduction to many of the topics you mention should have been well-covered by the end of high school. I know that both my sons have at least a passing knowledge of what you mentioned, and in some cases, a good deal more.
Nonetheless, I don't agree that college should just be about learning a trade. For folks who want to be plumbers or electricians (or lawyers or accountants), a trade school would suffice. There is value in a broader education, and not all (or perhaps even most) of that value is economic.
As for this thread, I'm inclined to agree with Gabz. Just ignore the bait.
I don’t think college should be for learning a trade. I agree that trade schools are for that. I value liberal arts, just not enough to want to pay for them for my kid or someone else’s kid, when the liberals make student loans all magically go away and I end up footing the bill.
There were a lot of subjects I really liked. History, classics, literature, writing. I enjoyed my out of major classes in those subjects. They tended to be easy As next to my math and computer science courses. I chose to major in a field that had a reasonable chance of a high paying job. Other people make different choices but it’s telling that most Occupy idiots are studying “Something Studies” at a local college.
Colleges need to be cleaned up - in the sense of Jesus cleaning the temple. They aren’t unredeemable like the government schools are, but probably 60% of majors and 70% of professors should be out in the garbage next week.