We are facing a crisis in this country. A crisis of culture, of drive, of motivation.
To many of our young people are not motivated towards excellence. This is particularly true of under served minority areas, of our vast inner cities.
Education is not seen as the key it is; the key to a better life. So often the schools are a place for kids to be kept during the day, warehoused.
Some of this is the fault of under preforming schools and under preforming teachers. But often these schools are not the lowest funded, often their per student expenditure is higher then better preforming adjacent communities...
When we have a school system where not a third of students who enter 9th grade leave with a diploma, we have a huge problem. For these children it is not true that YOU CAN BE ANYTHING, if they are fortunate they will get a job with benefits, and that after struggling to earn that GED.
My dream for this president is that he hooks into the passion that won him the White House, that he says (probably unpopular) things that start to drive a change in the culture of our inner city schools and children. That the suburbanites who rallied to his cause rally to this one with tutoring services and other help as needed. That the change towards a culture of excellence starts in the next 4 years.
Perhaps a Presidential Academic Excellence Award to take its place next to the Presidential Physical Fitness Test so many of us took. But it will take a change in culture and it will not be easy, but perhaps, no one is better suited then a president who understands the unique issues of the community and whose own children go to an exceptional school.
It will take an exceptional amount of effort and an exceptional amount of commitment from our new president elect, but it could happen. It will take a change in the way communities function, and probably a strengthening of families to focus more on education. And what a difference would that make in the economy if for all these children who are now left behind came to a place where anything really was possible...