The STEM gap is a real and complex issue. We cannot overcome the challenges we face without the collaboration of educators, parents, industry partners and mentors and policymakers with the courage to fight for bold investment in STEM education.
Knowledge is power, and in the case of financial education, knowledge is economic power, perhaps even economic destiny. Individuals, families, employers, communities and schools all have roles to play in ensuring that a secure economic destiny is available to all.
Even more tellingly, the people ahead of me in line had worked a graveyard shift in order to pay the $200 it cost them to attend. And they hadn't slept, because they drove up to Seattle from Tacoma right after work to get in line.
So much of my "wisdom" or, more accurately, just "stuff that I say," comes from the actual wisdom of the great mentor of my life, the incomparable Norman Lear. Graduation season is the perfect time to share Norman's "Norman-isms."
Teacher Appreciation Week soon will be over. Will America's teachers continue to be subjected to degradation and prevented from having a meaningful say in their profession? Or will their dedication and desire to help kids be respected?
When asked about what makes schools in our network different from traditional high schools, our common refrain is "don't ask us, ask the students." They are the best spokespeople for why change in education is necessary.
What stimulates your curiosity? When was the last time you created a place and a space to imagine? If you want a litmus test for how imaginative and innovative you truly are, spend several hours with children and see if you can hold their interest.
I was honored to recently have the chance to chat with Walter Dean Myers about his position as National Ambassador for Young People's Literature, his own background, and his dreams for our nation's children.
If we want American kids to compete and thrive in today's world, then re-imagining the school day needs to be something we each take up as a cause -- in our own schools, in our own towns, and all across the country.
Thanks to technology, the world can be our teacher and the Internet our classroom. What should matter is not so much your degree or grade point average but how well equipped you are for the next stage in life.
As we continue to cut public education in unimaginable ways, please remember the amazing teachers that shaped your lives. Let us help fight to enable teachers to continue to provide the highest possible instruction possible.