Education is the building block of success. The future of our country depends on preparing the minds of our youth to meet the vigors of competition in a global society. American public education has been failing millions of children and trapping them in failing and sometimes dangerous schools. We must insure that every child has the opportunity to achieve educational excellence.
The rest of the world has taken advantage of modern technology, the internet and the world wide web to raise their academic achievement as they are hungry to raise their standards of living for themselves and future generations. Inadvertently, we have rested on our laurels and have fallen behind.
Substandard education will cost our country on average $1.2 trillion in lost productivity per year. The ramifications of a failing educational system are felt throughout all sectors of our society.
Listed below are areas (including but not limited to) that the government, with support of Americans, has the opportunity to improve on, which will have a positive impact on education at all levels.
- Programs Proposed and Enacted to Improve American Education Have Largely Failed
- Provide Succeeding Generations with the World’s Finest Educational System
- Education is the Role of Parents / Parents are Best Equipped to Make Education Decisions for Their Children
- Eliminate Multiplication of Federal Education Programs / Administration of Federal Programs and Reports Increased Costs to States and Communities
- Schools Must Meet Students’ Needs and Provide a Stepping Stone to Succeed in Life
- Modify Tenure to Conform with Current Realities
- Independent Teacher Evaluations
- Improve Teacher Education and Professional Development
- Develop Countervailing Forces to Union Influence
- Return Authority to the States
- Local Control Works
- Empower Parental Choice in Education Where Appropriate
- School Choice Increases Academic Achievement / Places Competitive Pressure on Public School Systems to Improve and Meet Students’ Needs
- Expand Private School Choice Options / Promote Scholarships, School Vouchers, Education Tax Credits, Scholarship Donations, Education Savings Accounts
- Lift Caps on Charter Schools / Pass Strong Charter-School Law
- Rote Learning, Critical Thinking, and Problem Solving are at the Center of Most of Our Daily Activities
- Back to Basics – Teach Reading, Writing and Arithmetic
- History Requires Rote Learning / Roots of American Life Are In Our History
- Reintroduce Poetry and Shakespeare in the Curriculum
- Improve Technology
- Expand Online / Virtual Learning Options
- Preparation for 4-year College, 2-Year Community College, Technical and Trade Schools
- Welcome Foreign Students
- Improve Areas of Engineering, Science, Math and Literacy
- Compare Public, Private and Parochial School Results
- Independent Peer Review
- Protect Homeschooling / Pass Policies that Empower More Families to Participate
- Disparity in Costs between Public/Private/Parochial Schools
- Get the Federal Government Out of the Way of Local Schools
- Accountability Back to States
There is a good chance the next World War will not be fought on the battlefield, but will be an economic / educational war. It will also be an educational war because the less educated our populace is the less able we are to compete in a global society. Today our youth do not lead other nations in math, science and literacy. We are experiencing a major brain drain of our country’s most valuable resource, our minds!
We lose approximately $1.2 trillion to our economy because of a poor educational system. This is not only inexcusable from an economic standpoint, but is totally unconscionable for the moral and family fiber of our country. We live in the greatest country in the world, spend more money per capita on education and yet as you view the results at the end of the ---month, you will see as a country today we are eighth out of the top ten countries in mathematic scores and tenth in science scores for eighth graders.
State and Local Control: Beginning with the Great Society, the federal government’s role in education has expanded at an ever-increasing rate. Not coincidentally, students’ educational achievement has declined as parents and local officials have lost control over their schools.
We need to restore federalism and citizen ownership of public education by moving educational control out of Washington and into the hands of state and local authorities who are responsive to parents and other taxpayers. Let the parents decide!
Virtual Learning Options / On-Line Learning / Blended Learning Programs: The Internet and the information revolution has changed and improved our lives already. Now online learning is changing Kindergarten to 12th grade education. Virtual learning opportunities are giving families access to the best teachers. In the future students will be able to receive customized instructions from teachers anywhere in the U.S. or even the world. American students will be able to learn at their own pace personalized for their learning styles and interests. Technology will allow the best teachers to reach more students.
Today approximately 2% of the K-12 students are participating in some form of online learning. More and more school districts are offering virtual learning options that include supplemental instruction or blended-learning programs combined with face-to-face instruction. One analyst predicts that half of all high school classes will be online within a decade.
School Vouchers / Education Tax Credits / Charter Schools: Parents need more say in their child’s education. An increasing number of states and cities since the 1980’s have created programs – vouchers, education tax credits, charter schools – that give parents a choice in which schools their children will attend. School-choice programs have improved parents’ satisfaction, boosted test scores and fostered public-school improvement through competition.