In the State of the Union Address, President Clinton announced that our nation is headed in the right direction, our economy is strong, the national budget is balanced and there are more jobs being produced. However, it’s not all good news, especially when it comes to public education. Spewing forth national test results, Clinton regretfully informed us that we are once again ranked below average.
Unfortunately this scenario is all too familiar. Most of today’s schools have not been updated or renovated since the sixties or seventies. Cockroaches, leaky water pipes, poor lighting, and inadequate heating and cooling systems are just some of the things that can be found at these schools. In the summer of 1988, moving from California, where I had attended a large two story, well equiped middle school, to Arkansas, I had to make a big adjustment. I remember the realtor driving my mother and I to my new high school. We walked up the cracked sidewalk past the quad area where knee high weeds had taken root. I asked my mother if this was really the school I was going to be going to. “ It’s the closest one” she said. While registering, my mother asked the receptionist behind the counter if the school always looks like this. She assured us only during the summer, and that it will be cleaned up and painted before classes begin. First day of classes I arrived in a rickety old bus to find that nothing had changed, no new paint, the sidewalks weren’t fixed, the weeds were still there. To make matters worse, I had two classes in a couple of run down mobile homes behind the school. Needless to say I disliked the school. Studies have shown that students’ achievements and behavior are lin...
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...parent/teacher conferences, or taking a general interest in what they are studying, by going over home work with them. A study showed that 97% of the students who mostly made As and Bs reported that their parents encouraged them to do well in school. Parents are the most influential people in the lives of children, so what ever attitude is portrayed by the parents, the child will naturally assume. The worst thing that we can do is sit back and point fingers and find fault for these problems. Under the President’s proposed bill, report cards would be issued pertaining to the condition of the schools, so that parents can be more informed. We must voice our concerns and participate in bettering our schools. For example, get involved in school fundraising. If we don’t get involved and show a genuine concern, then these problems can do nothing but to get worse.
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