I grew up in a petrochemical town and kids could leave high school, with a diploma or not, and get a union job in a refinery or chemical plant, good wages, benefits, full retirement package. And I think there is a huge mindset in middle America that should still exist. And there is a similar mindset that if your kid goes to college, they should get a good job and be able to have a life with a decent salary, etc etc. I am of the opinion that both those scenarios are historical. And that frames my opinions as a parent. I have said to my kid many many times that opportunities are such that even with in born talent or intelligence, the hard worker will generally win out. If you have the talent and do the work, then you have advantage.

How many times have parents written that they have kids with top scores, great backgrounds and still cannot get into the colleges of their choice. Twenty years ago, they would have easily got into the schools they wanted with similar scores. Competition increases every year.