Great Public Schools: A Basic Right and Our Responsibility, a renewed call to all citizens -- parents, teachers, education support professionals, elected officials, community leaders, and yes, students -- to make our schools great for all Americans.
With the start of the school year just around the corner, now is an excellent time for all of us to renew our commitment to ensuring all children succeed. So what should be at the top of to-do lists as children head back to school?
Contrary to being overrated, this significant body of research further emphasizes the need for us all to see all families as powerful contributors to their children's education and for schools and communities to work more authentically to create opportunities for parents to be engaged.
Teacher-bashing has become a commonplace and even an acceptable practice among parents of school-going children. Somewhere along the way, parents and teachers went from being on the same team -- respected caregivers and educators of children -- to enemies at war.
No one is suggesting that we can't improve educational outcomes but pretending that a severely biased reading of an immaterial report somehow confirms the need for highly suspect partisan solutions could be the best example of where our school systems really do need to improve.
When Olympic skeleton driver Noelle Pikus-Pace zoomed face-down on her sled to the finish line of a frozen track, then realized her time was fast enough to win a silver medal, she blew off reporters, photographers and microphones. She had to find her family first.
Parents feel that they are pawns in a race to outperform other countries. Parents don't care about how their kids are faring in relation to Finland or South Korea. They care about the education and well-being of their children.
The bottom line is this: buried under the depressing headlines about an educational system crumbling before our eyes, there is at least a glimmer of hope. Students want to be better and parents want to be involved. This ain't summer school, indeed.
Today's parents are stressed and scheduled to the limit. Parents who work long hours are not available during the day, and may not be inclined to leave home in the evening. So what's a concerned parent to do?
Younger families coming up through the system can't cut-and-run from our public schools in their indecision of how to educate their own children. The problems that plague some of our schools belong to us all.