I think the problem here is that people like this article writer are expecting HS graduates to be able to jump into a profession with no additional learning/training.
Close. It's not that people like Ms. Harel "expect" this as much as they "want" this. If you haven't noticed, companies don't want to have to pay to train their people. Training comes off the bottom line, and that irks the most important people: stockholders. CEOs want schools to fully train the next-gen minions for them so they don't have to pay for the training themselves. Of course, they also don't want to pay the taxes necessary for this, but that's another issue.
(1) Inertia, and (2) code base. COBOL, and to some extent Fortran, are still around because of the huge amount of code nearly everywhere that would be way too expensive (and in some cases impossible) to recode. You also have to retool people and dev environments if you're going to jump to the latest/greatest way to slice bread. Not a fan of JS, but I don't see it disappearing any time soon.
Programming is an unnatural act.