It is so very French, but philosophy is an important part of adolescent education in France. It is nearly absent in American public schools. The only teaching in philosophy I received was a quick survey of the ancient Greeks in a Humanities course our senior year. It was enough, because it made me want to take philosophy courses in college. I can't imagine, as a high schooler, writing on the topics listed in the article.
Here is the well-stated reason for teaching philosophy:
So the purpose of teaching philosophy was - and remains, in theory - to complete the education of young men and women and permit them to think.
To see the universal arguments about the individual and society, God and reason, good and bad and so on, and thus escape from the binding imperatives of the now - by which I mean the dictatorship of whatever ideas are most pressingly forced on us in the day-to-day by government, media, fashion, political correctness and so on.
I like that phrase "the binding imperatives of the now."