Thursday, November 29, 2012

Tutor Mentor Everybody's Business

 Whether it is a public school, charter school, magnet school or private school, everyone is entitled to receive an education in America. Some would argue that the American education system can be ranked as the best in the world. There are countless stories of individuals who strive to achieve the American dream, to live in this great land of opportunity, and to receive an education.  Individuals and families have left behind everything they have ever known and have even sacrificed their lives to come to America for a chance to improve their lives. Many people have had the privilege to be a graduate from an esteemed high school, college, or another higher education institution.  Despite this, our education system is not void of problems.
While everyone in America has the right to receive an education, not everyone receives quality education.  Many critics have suggested that almost half of the American population has not graduated from high school. Hundreds of thousands of children are dropping out of high school every year. Teachers are forced to teach students in overcrowded classrooms with little resources. Some students attend neighborhood public schools with no special education classes, no ESL classes or even a library. Even with the No Child Left Behind Act in place, a policy meant to improve public schools and hold school officials accountable for school performance, many students are failing to meet or exceed academic standards.  Due to poor academic performance, many public schools are dealing with the reality of being closed down.

Nationally, there is the sentiment that the children are the future of America. You may be asking yourself, if children are not excelling academically in schools, what can be done? What can I as an individual, parent, guardian, family member, business owner, or concerned citizen do to help children across America? The answer is that everyone can do something as simple as donating a small sum of money to a community organization that provides educational enrichment services to something as great as starting your own program.  You can volunteer at a nearby organization to be a tutor or mentor. You can get more involved with your school district by attending meetings or looking at your neighborhood school’s annual report card.  Whether it is one hour of your time or five dollars of your money, anything you do can make a difference in some child’s life.  As a society, we must continue to take a vested interest in the education of children, the future of America.

I will leave you with this short metaphor: Picture everyone as a passenger on a boat. The person steering the boat announces that there is a hole that is letting water in the boat. What would you do? Would you save yourself? Would you try your best to stop the boat from sinking? Would you let the boat sink?


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