I wonder what the educational system would look like in our country if everyone sent their child to a public school. I wonder if there were no choices outside of public education if the state of education in the United States would be in a very different place.
Let me start off by saying that I believe in good schools–good private/independent schools, good parochial or religiously affiliated schools, good public schools and good public charter schools. I am a total school geek and love researching schools of all types all over the country to discover best practices in education and to learn more about current educational trends like technology in the classroom, STEM (science, technology, engineering & math), blended learning and the Common Core. I advocate for parent choice and love to help spread the word in my community in Los Angeles about the various options for schooling in our city. I don’t judge other parents’ decisions because each family is looking for the just right school fit for their child. In the spirit of full disclosure, my parents sent me and my sisters to private schools for the majority of our elementary school years. I then went on to graduate from an excellent suburban public high school on the North Shore of Chicago.
I do wonder, though, what would happen if our elected officials, our policy makers, the top officials in our public school districts all sent their children to public school. When you make decisions for other people’s children, it’s easier not to be emotionally involved. To make difficult budget cuts that take away funds from arts education, music, PE and sports programs. To close libraries and increase class sizes.
Just for a moment, I wonder what would happen if we all acted AS IF it was our own child or our niece or cousin who would be directly impacted by our educational policy decisions. I think we know the answer. The public education system as we know it would improve drastically.
“I am not a teacher, but an awakener.” – Robert Frost