On Tuesday, President Obama called upon all Americans to recognize November 14-20 as American Education Week, a time to renew the nation's focus on providing a quality education to all children.
American Education Week, originally co-sponsored by the National Education Association and the American Legion in 1921, is celebrated annually the week prior to Thanksgiving.
In his proclamation, the president reaffirmed the government's commitment to improving education nationwide. Specifically, Obama pointed to the goal of having the highest proportion of college graduates in the world by 2020.
Education reform has been a priority of the Obama Administration, which announced the winners of the federal Race To The Top grants in August.
The president also encouraged the public to take action to improve nearby schools.
I call upon all Americans to observe this week by supporting their local schools through appropriate activities, events, and programs designed to help create opportunities for every school and student in America.
Volunteers can get involved in schools by supporting educators to make a difference for struggling students or helping to improve local facilities.
How To Help:
- The National Education Association offers a free toolkit with hundreds of ideas for planning local Education Week events -- everything from honoring teachers with gifts to collecting donations for needy children.
- Americans can contribute to help individual classroom projects through the nonprofit DonorsChoose.org. Teachers can post requests on the website, asking for classroom supplies and other necessities, and the public can pitch in online to help.
- Communities In Schools provides help for students struggling to succeed in the classroom. Supporters can volunteer their time to mentor young people, organize local school supply drives and help students in many other ways.