Knee-jerk reaction detected! Didn't RTFA to boot! No wonder slashdot's moderators love you!
That's not what he's saying at all, but the poorly worded ./ summary and article set up so people, like yourself, can flame him easily without actually understanding what he's saying. He's not talking about his kid sucking at chemistry, nor is he blaming anyone for it, or even saying his kid should be good at it. What he's saying is that a distinct lack of variation in public education will only harm students in the long run. Perhaps high-school is a long time ago for you, but looking at the current American curriculum shows a very distinct lack of variability. For a personal example, the only time I actually got to choose a class I wanted to take in high-school was around senior year, every other class was part of some 2, 3, or 4, year plan that every student had to go through in order to graduate. 3 years of science, 4 years of English classes, 3 of a foreign language, 3 for history/civic involvement, etc. There was barely any time to do what I wanted to do.
First period: Science (Bio, Chem, Physics)
Second period: Math (Algebra, Geometry, Statistics, Pre-Calc)
Third period: History (Civics, Western Civ, US History 1 and 2)
Fourth period: Foreign Language
Fifth period: English
Sixth period: Lunch
Seventh period: Gym/Phys Ed
Eighth period: Elective
This was the setup at my high school. That meant every year, we were guaranteed at least one electives. Some students ditched lunch for a second. Some students wasted their elective to take a study hall.
Now keep in mind, state requirements vary. I'd finished my foreign language requirement after sophomore year, giving me an extra elective for my junior and senior years. I also took some BS introductory courses in science and math, and if I hadn't, I could have not had needed to take them senior year, or taken advanced placement classes instead.
And this doesn't include the imaginary Ninth period, which was used for detention, tutoring, extra-curricular activities (non-sports), and even a few classes (I remember our JROTC could be done 9th period). And this is before the sports programs started.
Maybe this is the exception to the rule, but if it is, looks like something was done right in NJ for a change.