Ok, right now, everybody spends exactly 13 years in school, unless they're stupid and live in a district that allows you to fail a grade. You start in Kindergarten and work your way up to and through high school one year at a time, and until high school, everyone advances at the same rate, learning addition and subtraction in the first grade, cursive in either the third or fouth, etc., etc. This system sucks donkey balls. It's estimated that while certain brain developments are required for deeper language learning, meaning English can stay where it is, many children are capable of learning multivariable calculus before puberty and it is, in fact, easier for children to learn foreign languages the younger they are. So, if these 'genius children' are capable of this, why don't we hear about them? Well, chances are, you do, but in a bad way. These kids account for over half the kids with disciplinary problems in elementary school, since they've already passed what's being taught and are incredibly bored with it, but have to wait for the slower kids to catch up. The whole system is retarded, which is why I propose we change it to the following, which I wish we'd had when I was a kid. All kids go through Kindergarten to learn writing basics and fun little things like tying your shoes. At the end of the year, they're given a placement test, and all children are placed in a class that fits their placement level. They take another test at the end of every year. A class would consist of all those of the same achievement level, regardless of age. Strangely enough, mixed classes like this behave better, for reasons I am unsure of. Those who advance quickly will learn highly advanced math and possibly multiple foreign languages, and to accomadate those who advance differently in each subject, they'll have a seperate class for each, meaning some children may be in remedial English and advanced physics at the same time. Once they have placed well enough in their poorest subject on the test, they may advance to high school, or, if the parents think they're a little young, they may stay at the elementary level a little longer, provided they haven't "capped out" any one subject (but they could then opt to take that subject at high school while everything else is at the elementary). Once in high school, you choose a vocational or college prep track, with requirements for graduation as they are now. Now, this system may sound a bit crazy, but that's because the grade advancement system has been the only one for decades. However, if this system was adopted, children could truly advance as fast as they could in any subject. It wouldn't be uncommon for 12 year olds to be doing triple integration, and stories of 16 year olds going to college wouldn't be so rare and exotic. Final credit, however, must be given to my mom, who came up with most of this while we were talking one day.