Statement of Purpose
There are many challenges facing public education and higher education today. Most of us have preconceived ideas as to why public education is failing so many students. There are historical reasons why public compulsory education was instituted. Many people believed that compulsory public education was valuable because an educated workforce was needed as the United States moved from an agricultural based economy to one based on industrialization. I have seen many changes in the education system and I am compelled to ask why today's students do not place more value on education. We can speculate all we want but there is nothing like the scientific method to separate fact from speculation. It will take research and analysis of facts gained from asking the right questions.
African Americans in particular have reason to ask probing questions about how the educational system is faring because the present research shows that African American children are failing to graduate from high school in alarming numbers and many who do graduate lack the basic skills needed to assume jobs which pay a living wage. In some ways I consider myself the last of a dying breed. I say this because I grew up in the segregated South under Jim Crow and contrary to many in the education establishment believe that Black students received a better general education and were better equipped to succeed in life because of a difference in focus. Is this fact or fiction?
As an educator I see first-hand the students today that have graduated from our high schools. I have taught in the Toledo Public Schools and have three sons who are graduates of Toledo Public Schools. It is obvious to me that the real problem is not today's students but the philosophy of teaching that is presented to the students. We must reevaluate the purposes of general education and get back to basics. What is the purpose of general education and whose interests are we serving? In a global economy we cannot continue to produce graduated or ungraduated students who are functionally illiterate and then import workers from other countries to fill the job gap.
At the present we are producing a permanent underclass of American students who then become social psychopaths filling our prisons and becoming even more socially marginalized. Part of the debate centers on the education reforms called No Child Left Behind. The debate in the public arena centers around those that claim that the problem is lack of money and resources in the public schools and those who claim enough already and allow parents to choose to opt out of failing public schools altogether. Either way the solutions will be worked out in the public arena and politics is the vehicle by which solutions and answers will be presented. Regardless of how this debate is concluded research and analysis within the scientific method is called for. We can speculate all we want but we will not find answers without the facts. America does not promise equal results but it does promise equal opportunity.
Larry O. Doyle, Esq.
Most of us that are conservative, have a similar background like yourself. Your children and your friends' children were lucky to be born into such families; Count your Blessings and be thankful.
However 75% of school age children are not that lucky and Big Gov., and special interest groups are busy indoctrinate these youngsters on our dime; We are paying for the grooming of tomorrow's leaders who will be rationing our health care, and enforce punitive taxation.
So it behooves us to get off our high horses and fight for the control of public schools and get uninformed parents to see things our way.
Let share 2 beautiful incidents I had at work last week.
Among other others I cared for a 42 year old white male who is a quadriplegic secondary to a MVA (motor vehicle accident) and a 79 year Black male. (his diagnosis is irrelevant).
Towards the end of the shift, the older gentleman struck up a conversation with me re. my accent and where I live. And when he told me that he lives on Hilltop Mall in Richmond, I mentioned that he probably has seen or heard about me before, because I am the one that protests the abortion clinic at Hilltop every W/day.
He was shocked to learn that PP/hood has been at that location for 18 years, "Doing their dirty deed" as he put it and encouraged to continue toHe revealed that he has been a long-time Democrat and has voted for the Millers family since George Miller's father was in office.
He did not believe my assertion that Democrats are very hostile to Christians and families. George Miller who is our Congressman, is the Chair of the department of education and labor. Miller and this administration defunded a very successful scholarship program for 1700 DC district students, that the Bush administration had implemented. He could not believe that, so I pulled up several articles on the Internet, printed them up and handed it to him. But he wanted me to read them to him and I did.
Only then he slowly began to reduce his resistance to believing the facts of the truth.
The younger patient is also a registered Democrat but he was so impressed with the care that I provided him, that he volunteered to precinct ride in his electric wheelchair and distribute brochures to the community on my behalf.
He actually said, "This will be the first time that I will be voting for a Republican. Heck, I might even become a Republican.";-))
I am sharing this to illustrate that even the uninformed and ignoramus have value, and there are other avenues for us to educate them, and have them see things our way.
That should be the end goal of every patriotic American.
Hope there are no ill feelings between us. You are my sister in Christ.
My take on this is:
Unless America's public school systems accept and employ a uniform curriculum and equal test scoring standards across the board, expect continued low graduation rates among our low income students.
Unfortunately, fleshing out common sense education reforms is not the liberal government's strong suit.
As many readers know, I have been busy pursuing a Ph.D. in Education to compliment my law degree, so forgive me for being absent at times. Nonethe less, the energy of the education reform movement has not waned. I followed closely the failure of Kentucky to pass a bill allowing charter schools in the state, one of the last remaining holdouts. I am looking forward to sharing with you some of my research findings. Romney seems to be saying the right things about school choice and we support his position. Education equality is the most important civil rights issue of our day.