A few years ago my wife (who is an amazing teacher) passed along to me a young adult novel titled Peak. It was the story of a 14 year old boy named Peak (named after his, now separated, mother and father's own passions for climbing) who finds himself in a bit of trouble after scaling the exterior of the Woolworth building in New York. Without giving away the story, Peak ends up on an Everest Expedition with his adventurer father.
Among the most compelling storylines within the novel are those told around the many ascents and descents made by the climbers as they attempted to acclimatize to the altitude changes along the route.
The main idea behind acclimatization is that you "Climb High and Sleep Low" essentially stressing your body with day climbs to altitudes with lower oxygen levels and returning to lower altitudes to recover and replenish or build new red blood cells.
When climbing Everest the acclimatization schedule includes weeks of hiking to higher altitudes and returning to lower camps all in preparation for one final push to the summit.
What might we learn?
Transitioning from High school to college can be an incredible shock. What if there were an acclimatization schedule that allowed each student to take those stresses in manageable segments before making the dramatic push to new heights?
Maybe fewer students would fail to complete their college path?
Maybe more students might see the path as accessible and manageable?