Check out this: http://news.yahoo.com/s/time/20081107/us_time/shouldkidsbeabletograduateafter10thgrade
An article from Time magazine I found from Yahoo's homepage: Consider it a step in the interesting direction (notice I did not say 'right' direction...I still believe you must be physically as well as mentally mature enough to handle the rigors of college and the total immersion, which is FAR different [can I emphasis that more?] than high school or "Your Hometown, U.S.A."
The proposal is for students in NH to leave school by age 16 and enter community college for a year or two and then head off to 4-year colleges for their final two years. The plan will indeed free up millions, possibly billions, of dollars in educational spending for the state, will increase community college enrollment to generate more state revenue, will keep dropout rates virtually non-existent, and promises to keep students at the same level as their peers in Europe and Asia who are consistently supposed to display the same sort of intelligence at age 16 as an American college junior...kind of shows our lacking education and our need for more funding.
I support this on the condition that college enrollment doesn't decrease, teachers will not be fired, but instead class sizes will diminish as a result and therefore grades will increase (a proven fact ignored by NCLB [No Child Left Behind]), and that the tests coincide with a broad scope of knowledge useful on both paper and life, instead of a grand knowledge of Algebra and Catcher in the Rye, let's say for example.
Also, if other state's begin to adopt it, I think it's a turn in the right direction. But if kids start dropping out before the test, or refuse to use their last two years, or don't go the comm. college-4-year college route, I think this will be another failed experiment. Kids HAVE to follow this path in order for it to work, and how many will, or will want to?
That remains to be seen.