The man who stood at the entrance to my New World was my first English teacher, Ernie Kaeselau. He passed away recently, and though I hadn't seen him in decades, the news of his demise left me unexpectedly bereft.
The country I grew up in made it possible for a kid who had no chance in life to climb up and help himself. I'm a product of 40 foster homes, three group homes and finally adopted parents who passed away -- I know the importance and need for social programs.
We are all delusional if we believe we can change the educational outcomes for African Americans, or any other race for that matter, without high quality teachers in every classroom. For that to occur, we need to change many well- established rules.
Right before the U.S. House of Representatives left for the summer to go home to campaign for your vote, they voted to extend the Bush-era tax cuts for the richest Americans millionaires and billionaires.
When we blame teachers, we fail to address the roles played by budget cuts and by family and child poverty, and we fail to recognize those who are dedicated to student success in the face of great challenges.
While sources of learning are diversifying at rates that evoke an Amazonian rainforest, the goal of this education remains the same as it always has: preparing the next generation of the workforce to survive, and perhaps thrive, in the real world.
It is possible that the benefits of being happy persist over the long term and happy people are the ones who make the most of their lives. It is also possible that there are benefits to being happy in the short term, but not in the long term.