A recent analysis by the Education Trust shows that a substantial percentage of high school graduates do not meet the minimum academic standards to join the US Army. This statement is based on standardized test results on the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB).
The ASVAB contains eight tests to determine the test takers basic knowledge and skills. Those who score on the low end of this test are denied acceptance to the military, no exceptions. Unfortunately, our nation finds itself in a situation where the military is forced to turn away a very high percentage of applicants due to low scores on the ASVAB. Not only do these applicants not possess the knowledge and skills necessary to join the military, but it is also equally likely that they are not prepared for the civilian workforce as well.
Another reason many applicants are unqualified is the lack of physical fitness. Our country’s obesity rate is on the rise, and it is estimated that at least nine million 17-to-24-year-olds are too fat to serve in the military.
Our country’s national security is directly related to the education of our young people. We must provide better academic preparation and endorse healthy living in order to ensure a safe environment in the years to come. Our global economic position is also affected by the lack of preparedness of our youth. “If the nation is lacking in energetic and academically capable individuals working and contributing to our economy, then our country’s status on the world economic stage will be significantly diminished or compromised.”
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