He mentions that the traditional four year degree (BA or BS degree) may one day be as common as a high school diploma (with 80%+ percent one day holding 16 years of education like it is for high school diplomas) and that merely finishing 12th grade cannot make a kid ready for the work force. In 1900, we didn't have computers, smart phones, and a whole host of technology that has made the world so complex, so today's kid needs all the tools of the basics of reading, writing, and arithmetic, but also add a component of "technology". While not making a bachelor's be the minimum, it does establish a joint diploma with both high school and an associate's degree completed after the six year high school.
Devil's advocate - when I graduated high school, I don't think I was lacking any of the "tools" like reading, writing, and arithmetic, and certainly while I learned a little more about working with computers in college, it was pretty marginal and, realistically, probably mostly related to computer audio, which has nothing to do with my profession. I'd say as far as pure aptitude goes, there was nothing I didn't already have on my last day of high school that I actually NEEDED on my first day on the job in my first "real" post-college job, as an entry level fund accountant.
I think rather the things I learned in college were more intangible - being exposed to MANY more and wildly divergent viewpoints than I'd seen growing up in a small town in Massachusetts (with admittedly a very good public school system), and being surrounded for four years by a community of very intelligent, very academically driven, and very engaged with their world teenagers and young 20-somethings were both things that I think had a tremendous impact on who I am as a person and how I see the world. Ditto with a few of my professors, many of whom I still look up to today, more than a decade later.
Furthermore, I think the things that my employers valued (and continue to value) about my college degree has very little to do with the classroom (though, I may be a slight anomaly here as I was a literature major who then went down the finance path after graduating) and more to do with the fact I went to a very prestigious, challenging school, so one they assume I'm intelligent and two they know that I'm capable of working hard towards a goal in let's be honest one of the single most distraction-laden environments I've ever been in.
It sounds kind of flippant, but the fact that there's evidence on my resume that I spent 4 years as a very young adult with no real supervision and still had no trouble staying focused on long-term goals is something that is clearly valuable to an employer, and being perfectly honest that's something I got a whole heck of a lot better at while I was in college.
So, long story short, I don't know if I agree with this guy. I could have graduated from high school and gone straight to State Street and have not had any gas in my abilities, I think. However, I would have been a much less mature, focused, well grounded, thoughtful, and open minded person at 18 starting my career than at 22, and I don't know if I would have succeeded as well (nor do I think I would have even gotten a call back for an interview, without the "oh, he went to a god school, he's probably smart and can probably pick up everything he needs to learn" thing going for me).
I wasn't really a fan of high school, and I don't see how another two years would have taught me anything I didn't already know after graduating, especially because most of the "valuable" things I learned in college were related to things like being independent and responsible without parental guidance or supervision, and broadening my worldview through the relationships, good and bad, that I made. I think college is more of a socializing and, to an extent, networking thing than anything else, unless you're pursuing a very specific technical field. Delaying that, which I hate to be cynical but I do think is incredibly valuable, doesn't seem like it would be a beneficial move.
I still don't understand why everyone is required to take classes like dance and art appreciation.
Ironic thing to say on a music discussion forum, no?
Personally, I'd love to see some early adult/middle school and high school level education on basic financial literacy, but I also think that music and art are very important thiings to expose young adults to - they're broadly speaking both attempts to find meaning in what it means to be a human, which I think is the ultimate purpose of all education and all knowledge. It's not something everyone should do for a living, clearly, but it's something everyone should understand.