How US high school culture brought teen values to the world. Adolescence isn’t a time of life so much as a frame of mind. Liberating yet damaging, it’s transformed the US and the world. Here, Paul Howe, a professor of political science at the University of New Brunswick in Fredericton, contemplates the reasons why. "Hidden in this puzzling arc of social change is another unintended consequence. Universal secondary education not only elevated Americans by spreading relevant knowledge and skills to the masses. It also gave rise to a more complex social and cultural transformation, as the adolescent period became pivotal in shaping who we are. The fact is that high school is, and always has been, about more than just education."