A Matter of Choice

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Walter McKenzie wrote one of the best blog posts yet on education reform, which is cross-posted at ASCD’s Whole Child Blog.

He says:

This equation shows how far we have strayed from public education’s original focus: to prepare children to be responsible, contributing citizens to our democracy. Instead of modeling democratic principles, our schools have become authoritarian, prescribing standards and outcomes with one small range of right answers and one summary definition of success. We are literally training our next generation to think and lead by principles that are antithetical to the intellectual, emotional and social skills and values essential to our democracy. If students do not embrace diversity, equity and respect for differences, they will not be prepared to meet the challenges of our country’s future.

I cried when I read this because if we don’t educate for democratic values, our democratic republic will be lost.

Walter reminds us of what Franklin Delano Roosevelt said:

“Democracy cannot succeed unless those who express their choice are prepared to choose wisely. The real safeguard of democracy, therefore, is education.”  -Franklin Delano Roosevelt

Please read Walter’s post:

A Matter of Choice.

and then stand up for our ideals — get the conversation rolling.

I’ve been asking our academic coaches, our superintendent, and our school board to ask questions, to research, to think about the mandates that now label us and steal our spirit, but who can challenge the mandates of punishment? Not questions. Not innovation. Only the local communities who will stand up and speak up — with voices and votes because it is “A Matter of Choice.”

 

Image Credit:
John Dewey Education Quote by Sheri Edwards on Flickr

4 comments

  1. Sheri thank you so much! Nothing is more edifying than knowing hearts and minds resonate together in the sharing of our ideals and aspirations. I have reblogged your post on Actualization!

    • I’m so glad that the “Whole Child Initiative” continues to grow, and that people like you who are respected educators and authors continue to speak out about what needs to happen for education to truly meet the needs of students. Thanks.

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