When the education of the populous is compromised by underfunded systems, politics, and failing structure then the country suffers.
It's important for every citizen to take a holistic look at their schools, and then work together to improve conditions if need be.
Every citizen needs to understand what it means to be well educated today and the kinds of schools that lead to a top-notch education.
For that assessment, citizens should look at the following attributes:
- Are the schools student-focused? Is there an attitude and effort to help every child succeed?
- Are families and community members welcome at schools?
- Do educators have the credentials needed to do the job?
- Do educators have the working conditions with regard to time, place, and resources to do the job well?
- How do students and graduates assess the programs?
- Are resources used well? What metrics do you use to assess that? Are the metrics valid?
- Are students getting a holistic education, one that prepares them well as future contributors to society and successful, happy individuals?
Last night I heard a story about a teacher from another state. Her work conditions were impossible when it comes to teaching children well. I was discouraged to hear this story. There's no reason why our country can't create conditions for excellence in every school--that's a goal we should all commit to.