I read today that the public puts Education right behind the economy and jobs as what concerns them. There are important issues to be addressed. There are as many ideas and opinions as there are vested interests in the education system. Everyone has an opinion.
Teachers view the system one way, parents another, and the government yet another. I think we can agree that we want high quality teachers and that they shouldn’t be fired because they are new to the job. Teachers should be mentored and supported. It is a collaborative effort. I think we agree (although some don’t put it into succinct words) that INSTRUCTION is everything. Think about that. Without the best instruction where would we be? That encompasses great teachers and great teaching, high quality 21st century relevant curriculum and the accountability that all of those things are doing what they are supposed to do.
Many don’t follow thorough with their ideas to make them work or show why they are important and will work. With all due respect, teachers and school personnel talk a lot. As a society, we need to be responsible and accountable with the education of our next generation. It is not okay to criticize and not offer a solution or an alternative. If you have ideas, how to implement them and why they will work should come along with presenting those ideas. As I have said previously, creativity is great, but it is not creative just because it is out of the box. It has to be practical, real and doable. Prioritizing what needs to be done is imperative. Many talk, but action is haphazard. A plan that is a clear, consistent path to implementation and accountability will signal positive change. To do this one needs to know what the goal is and what the outcomes must be.
One other very important thing to mention: There are those who don’t want to pay for education or concern themselves with it because they don’t have children. Others believe they survived their education and are okay so the next generation will be okay too. I am not sure I want to dignify these positions with comments. I have addressed them before. We live in a world in which we don’t really know what the future will bring or what the jobs will be. In order to be prepared for the future, quality education must be available for all. I don’t believe if it was good enough 50 years ago, it is good enough now. That spins out to some significant consequences. No matter who you are, children or not, the world affects you. We all need goods and services and I want to get my goods and services from those who have been diligent about their training and education.
Education must be appropriate for our world today to ready students for a yet unknown world. Young people must be facile and career or college ready. Literacy and numeracy must be a top priority. The preeminent issue for education today is to show students the path to innovation, design, science and engineering, and that they must be proficient in core subjects such as language arts and mathematics to do this.
See the article from 4/4/2012 Education is a Top Tier Issue for 012 in Swing States, Survey Shows: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/04/04/education-election-2012-swing-state-issue_n_1402529.html
CHART FOR ISSUES SCHOOLS MUST ADDRESS: