All too often, solutions proposed to fix the education system involve throwing money at the situation. We already spend far more on our students than any other country in the world. Money isn’t the issue.
What is needed is a change of culture that fosters hard work and innovation.
The problem is that the trend in this country seems to be toward the government putting a stranglehold on educators, increasingly regulating how and what they teach. These regulations don't allow educators the opportunity to explore new and better ways to help children learn. It also systematically discourages the individualization, ignoring the fact that every student is motivated by different things and learns in different ways.
Charter schools are an enormous step in the right direction.
Yes, there are charter schools that fail to deliver. There are also charters that have produced stunning results, making resounding successes of students from the poorest neighborhoods in the country.
Then there are charters that may not give a student better test scores, but their approach to education will spawn interest in future intellectual pursuits of students who may not be inspired by traditional schooling.
The nature of this country isn’t to be safe and satisfied with the middle, but to strive to find new, different and better ways to do things. That is exactly what charter schools are for, and even though the road to innovation is often a bumpy one, it is always a worthy one.
Shane Morin, Lewiston