How a Good Education Can Help All Children Find Success
BART PEMBERTON Tucson, Governing Board Candidate for Catalina Foothills School District, CFSD16, www.Bart4CFSD.com

“It is an object of vast magnitude that systems of education should be adopted and pursued which may not only diffuse a knowledge of the sciences but may implant in the minds of the American youth the principles of virtue and of liberty and inspire them with just and liberal ideas of government and with an inviolable attachment to their own country.”

Noah Webster, On the Education of Youth in America 1

A good education lays the groundwork for children to achieve success by unlocking and developing the ability to think critically, solve problems, and make informed decisions.  It enables children to develop the knowledge, attitudes, and skills necessary to navigate the good, the bad, and the ugly of life.  The most important teachers in any child’s life, especially in terms of social and emotional development, are that child’s parents or guardians.  Maximum success requires an active and effective partnership between the school and the family.

“It is the duty of parents to maintain their children decently, and according to their circumstances; to protect them according to the dictates of prudence; and to educate them according to the suggestions of a judicious and zealous regard for their usefulness, their respectability and happiness.”                                                                                                                                                          James Wilson, Lectures on Law, 1791 1

A robust curriculum that includes mathematics, science, language arts, and social studies helps children develop critical thinking skills. Such skills enable them ultimately to make more reasoned and sound judgments, especially when evaluating different and potentially conflicting information and perspectives.

Critical thinking allows children to approach challenges with an adaptative and resilient mindset, unafraid of mistakes and willing to learn from them.  As they mature, these skills become invaluable in navigating the complexities of the modern workforce and making sound decisions in their personal lives.

In addition to the essential partnership with parents, schools can provide a structured environment where children learn to interact with their fellow students, develop communication skills, and build relationships. Children learn the importance of teamwork and respect for others through family and group activities, collaborative projects, and extracurricular programs.

“If Virtue & Knowledge are diffused among the People, they will never be enslav’d. This will be their great Security.”                                                                                                                                                 Samuel Adams, letter to James Warren, February 12, 1779 1

John Adams achieved one of the most significant accomplishments in educational history: he wrote the Massachusetts Constitution of 1780 and placed education at the center of the states understanding of government. The Constitution declared that wisdom and knowledge . . . diffused generally among the body of the people [are] necessary for the preservation of their rights and liberties. . . . [Thus,] it shall be the duty of legislatures and magistrates, in all future periods of this commonwealth, to cherish the . . . public schools.” 2

Great education can be a gateway for children’s future success in life, providing youth from all backgrounds with the opportunity to excel. For many this can be a pathway out of poverty, opening so many doors during one’s lifetime that would otherwise be closed.

Equal access to a quality education helps ensure that all children, regardless of their socioeconomic status, can progress as far as their abilities and hard work will take them. Scholarships, financial aid, and community support can help level the playing field, giving as many kids as possible the tools they need to succeed.

Creativity and innovation are indispensable in our ever-changing world. A good education encourages children to think outside the box, pursue their passions, and develop their God-given talents. By partnering with the parents and families of the children, and by providing a stimulating learning environment that nurtures curiosity and creativity, schools can inspire the next generation of innovators, scientists, artists, skilled laborers, and entrepreneurs.

Pursuing excellence in the music and the arts, project-based learning, and hands-on experiences (e.g., various trades like carpentry, welding, and electricians) are just a few ways schools can promote creativity. When children are encouraged to explore their interests and experiment with new ideas, they develop the confidence to be risk-takers and problem-solvers.  These are essential ingredients for success in the American and global economy.

By having an appropriate knowledge of American Civics and History, our children can grow up fully informed and engaged citizens.  They will be able to do their part in preserving and maintaining their God-given rights as spelled out in the Constitution, The Bill of Rights, and the Declaration of Independence.

One of the most important fruits of a good education is the potential development of a lifelong love of learning.  When children are engaged and motivated by their family, school, and educational environment, they are likelier to become lifelong learners and not rest on their laurels.

When the learning never stops, adaptation to the challenges one may face in life becomes much easier.  It enables individuals to stay current with evolving technology, navigate changing job markets, and pursue personal and professional growth.

A good education equips children with some of the cognitive, social, and emotional skills needed to thrive and make the most out of one’s life.  By effectively and honestly partnering with parents, providing equal access to quality education, promoting creativity, innovation, and a love of learning, we can help all children achieve their full potential and build a brighter future for themselves and America.

For more information about Catalina Foothills School District Candidates and Bart Pemberton, follow his Facebook & Twitter posts.

References:

  1. https://www.nas.org/blogs/article/u_s_founding_fathers_on_education_in_their_own_words
  2. https://time.com/5891261/early-american-education-history/

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