IMPROVING SCHOOLS, EMPOWERING PARENTS
Public school teachers lost their voice when they were ordered to evaluate all students with nationally standardized tests. I've taken 23 standardized tests in my lifetime. These tests measure little more than one's ability to take multiple test questions well. Republicans wish to close the Department of Education and give monies directly to states to use as they see fit, but this does not fit for the nation at large. As we've seen in this state, left to their own, these Republicans feed the wealthy and starve the poor. They will do the same with education.
Individual communities, counties, and districts should be allowed to create their own standards and expectations for students because all communities, like individuals, are different. These communities should then be measured on their ability to meet those standards, and those standards should also include success post-graduation. Do our children progress through college, or do they fail to graduate? What percentage obtain degrees? What percentage abandon their academic plan? How many fall into the legal system? With these types of measurements, local schools can then focus their educational objectives and improve their outcomes.
I fully support vocational schools, and I believe mentoring is needed in all vocations as an excellent, practical way to teach young people how to work hard and work well.
I also believe that Teacher Unions can contribute and help maintain the professionalism of teaching even though these unions have taken a beating, which is odd because unions seem to have worked well for athletes (NBA, NFL, MLB and NHL), airline pilots, and actors.