THE PROBLEMS AND NEEDS
EDUCATIONAL organization and procedure must be built upon the characteristics of the individual to be educated, for the effectiveness of any program is largely determined by the interests, capacities, and status of the individual. For example, it may be deemed desirable, and useful to society and the individual, to train youth of today in philosophy, higher mathematics, English literature, Greek or the history of economic thought, but it is very doubtful if more than a small minority of the whole secondary school population would make sufficient headway in them to warrant the expenditure of time and money involved in the attempt.
This is an important factor for those who will not become college graduates. The group which presents our most pressing educational problem is composed of youth beyond compulsory school age, not of children blindly accepting school curricula and activities on faith. Most of this group will never seek college degrees, so there is for them no incentive to give their best efforts to studies the avowed purpose of which is to prepare for college or university. Whatever youth are taught should either give pleasure while studying it, or possess readily recognized and deeply appreciated indirect or deferred values.
Any program of youth education should be formulated in the light of capacities and interests, as well as adjusted to probable individual needs. Youth must be prepared to do various things, to specialize in some one thing and to ex-