I watched the CNN Republican Debate. Even though they discussed some important topics, such as the Middle East, taxes, immigration, defunding Planned Parenthood, among others, I kept waiting and waiting, they completely missed one of the biggest crisis facing this country. It is time we as the people begin screaming. I do mean scream, we must have education reform! We are focusing on so many issues while our children are not being educated to the level of the resources that we have in our country. Think about that. We are a G8 geopolitical power with resources far beyond most countries and what are we not doing with our resources? We are not giving our children the education on par with the resources we have, and our country and young people are suffering because of this.
The National Center for Education Statistics in 2012 did a comprehensive study of 65 countries. Here is where the United States stood. We are 36th in mathematic literacy. Our average score was 13 points below the average score of the 65 countries taken together. We are 28th in scientific literacy. Our average score was 4 points below the average score of the 65 countries. We are 24th in reading literacy. We did score above the average score of the 65 countries in reading, but by only 2 points.
In the three hour debate, there was not one question asked on education. In the three hour debate, I counted only five references in total to education. Of those five, four of the references were single sentence statements without any detail or explanation. The other reference was a 30 second response of Scott Walker. When discussing the raising of minimum wage, Walker said that education is a way to raise a persons earning potential. A three hour debate, and by my estimation, education was discussed for less than 60 seconds. More time was spent for each candidate to give him or herself a code name. We are missing it.
We score behind countries such as Vietnam, Slovenia, Estonia, Lichtenstein among others. I am not putting down those countries. What I want you to do is compare the GNPs of the U.S. and these countries, compare the resources of the U.S. and these countries. It is appalling that the children of the geopolitical power of the United States is receiving a lesser education than Vietnam and Slovenia.
How can we expect the United States to grow as a nation if we are not equipping our children to succeed?
Working in ministry, I have worked with young people in the rural south. I have been a part of ministry efforts in metropolitan inner cities. So many inner city schools across this nation are more about survival than education. So many rural schools are viewed by students as irrelevant because they believe they are going to work on the local farms or the local factory no matter what happens or what they learn in school.
Education must equip young people to succeed. Students should be equipped to follow their choices and chase their dreams. Our educational system in below average and mediocre at best. Too many individuals are going through our educational system without gaining the skills to live the American Dream.
Education must become a top priority.
The Federal Government in 2015 has spent 4% of its total spending on education. All states combined, spend from the state and local level a little over 4.6% of their total spending on education. We are below average in education and our support of education is disgusting and should shock us.
We have too many people dependent on welfare. Unemployment is making feeding families a mountainous task. Crime rates are staggering. Racism is running rampant. We have complex issues to deal with such as immigration, tax reform, economic reform, and the above mentions welfare, unemployment, crime, and racism. There is one area that we can focus on that will have a positive impact on all of the other problem areas, and that is education.
Fewer people would be dependent on entitlements if their were impressively equipped to succeed in life through an impeccable education. There would be less unemployment if each student was skilled to produce in the workforce through impeccable education. Crime goes down through better education. That is fact. Learn more through this link. Education will equip our children with the ability to tackle the tough issues of racism, economic reform, tax reform, immigration, but not only tackle these issues, but solve them.
We must fully fund our schools to equip young people to succeed. We must fully fund the department of education to create and implement educational strategies to equip young people succeed. We must lower the cost of college and technical schools. This may take a radical new approach to education. We must be open to a completely new approach to education because what we are doing is not working. We need to question the 180 day school year. We need to question a two month summer break and what that does to memory. We need to question and search and discover what teachers need to impact and uplift students. We must change and grow.
With these facts in hand, how can we have a three hour political debate without a single question asked on education. We are missing it.
We must raise the importance of education in our national conscience. 4% total spending on the federal and 4.6% spending on the state and local level is not only setting our country up for failure. It is a condemnation upon us as a nation.
How can we say our nation’s most important resource is our children?