Once we work through the schools, school boards, local & state politicians, parents, communities, & local businesses, there isn't much space left for the advocacy of 5, 10, & 15 year olds that don't have jobs or vote. We have to do right for them, not take advantage of them. If you expect retirement money in your 70s, someone has to keep the economy moving in a positive direction. The generations of students that grew up after you will have to fuel the future economy.
I would ask those that push an agenda to help the average person understand basic things in the educational pitches for the ideas you advocate.
- How does it help the students? Which students? (All, elementary only, disabled, economically disadvantaged, etc.)
- Where do the consumers of those students weigh in? (employers, colleges, next level of K-12 education)
- What do you expect of the parents & K-12 schools to get your proposal done?
- How long to implement?
- What's the cost? How do we pay for it?
As I see news that highlights lack of preparation for college or the work force, I have to question--are we doing the right things to help our kids succeed? When I see proposals that tell us to do more testing, but the results seem more impactful to the principals & teachers than the kids--I question the focus on testing. When school budgets continue to get cut and we lose certain subject areas, I ask, why these? Were they the least valuable? When it takes 5 years to make a change, what happens to the kids that will graduate in the next 4 years? As schools lose funding due to loss of property taxes, how do we afford anything new? Should there be a different way to fund schools? I see lot's of controversy around charter schools. Is the competition good? Should the competitor (local school board) determine if you can exist? Can local schools take ideas from charters & implement them in ways that help some students?
Answering the 5 questions will help us understand the next education proposal.