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I hope so. I took wood shop for the first time in JR High in the very early 90s. (like 1990, lol) I ended up taking it every year I was in Jr High. I don't know if my old jr high still has the shop or not. I do believe that by the time my sister got to jr high, it was no longer required for everyone. I do remember the metal shop was converted into a technology lab my last year of jr high.

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Wood shop in my high school was a required subject for the boys, just as home ec was required for the girls. Most of those programs were done away with because of the liability cost to the school systems. I do not recall anyone ever getting hurt in wood shop. I built a three point hydro plane in my senior year. It was a very hand tool intensive project. I learned a lot during the 4 years that I took woodshop, probably a great deal that I didn't know I was learning. I have had young men come to work for me that could not read a tape measure, had a limited amount of "native ability", and not a lot of "want to". They never had an idea about what they wanted to become. One, a high school dropout, quit school to start a business designing web sites. He was much smarter than all of his teachers put together, according to him. He lasted four days. I believe that if a kid wants to learn, he or she will get the education they need. Others will just drift from one job to another for a paycheck. Sorry about the oration, just an old guy with his opinion.

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I'm in favor of shop class in general, not just wood shop. All facets of working with tools should be taught. It was at my school, as well as hand drafting and computer aided design. We designed it, built it, tested it, used it, reported on it, sold it, etc. All aspects of the business were taught. I learned more relevant information from the 7 or so shop related classes I took than all of the state mandated classes combined. I mean, when's the last time you were in a jam and found answers by remembering an old history or calculus lesson? I will fight to keep tool usage in schools.

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haven't read any of the articles yet... wanted to chime in my thirty seven cents. During junior high, all kids were required to go to either wood shop or metal shop. I took wood shop in 7th, and metal shop in 8th. I had a blast in both.

Our wood shop was filled with massive power tools, to the point where we did not even know how many thousands of dollars were spent on the big tools. 20" planer, drum sander, 20" bandsaws, sliding table saws, it had it all. And every project done was done with hand tools for all the students. I learned I need major help with handplanes thanks to that course. I tend to be a perfectionist, so I was not ever happy with any angle other than 90 degrees. So I shortened a board from 5 inches thick to 2 1/4 inches. And incurred the wrath of the shop teacher when I asked for a second board.

I also learned none of the girls were comfortable in that class. Not from aprehension about skills, either. Apparently, the shop teacher creeped every single one of them out. Nobody ever filed a formal complaint with the school board, but the rumor mill was rapant about him. And no, I'm not going to state his name. Or state which school it was, even though some can probably figure that out with a little research.

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