“It takes courage to attempt the impossible. What would we think of Moses today if when it was time to part the Red Sea, he had said Why don't you guys go build a bridge?”
It only takes one quick look around to see that the bridges we are trying to build between teachers, parents, every day Americans and those who are making the decisions regarding public education just aren't reaching as far enough as they need to. Because of this, it is time to make our voice even louder.
On Saturday, April 30th, Wear Red For Public Ed and The SOS Million Teacher March will be sponsoring See Red: Hear Me Day all across America. For the last two and a half months, people all across America have been wearing red every Tuesday to show their support for public education. Every week, more and more people throw on their brightest red clothes to show that public education, regardless of what some might say, is wo
rth the time, attention, and support of America's leaders. Instead, nearly every day a new budget is revealed that cuts public education's funding, cuts teachers, cuts programs, and leaves the trimmings on the floor along with our children's futures.
However, if you ask most people involved in public education, they will tell you that money is not an issue; however, having enough in the budget to maintain a standard of education that our children deserve is. Without enough money, class sizes grow, extra-curricular programs go away, tutoring and services like it disappear, and many other aspects that negatively affect a child's education develop.
While shrinking budgets are one problem facing public education, they are not the only problem. Public schools all across America are facing their own problems, some similar to those faced across America, others individual to their district or s
tate. The problems are too varied to list and fully explain here, but some include an over-reliance on standardized tests, new laws being instituted or proposed that make teaching an unattractive career option for our nation's best and brightest college graduates, a lack of respect for parent and teacher input, and the use of curricula and materials that are extremely outdated.
While I am unable to go into the specifics of every problem facing our nation's public schools, on April 30th you will be able to ask those who are involved with public education on a day-to-day basis what they think about the issues. What do they feel are some of the problems their schools face? More importantly, what do they think are some plausible solutions to those problems?
But how will you know who to ask? Easy; they will be wearing a shirt or button or holding a sign that says "Ask Me About Public Education!" and will be dressed in their brightest red on See Red: Hear Me Day. They will be walking down your streets, grading papers at your local coffee shops, gathered in groups with others who deem public education important enough to have honest discussions about, and just about everywhere else throughout the day.
So when you look up and see a sea of red on See Red: Hear Me Day, get your questions ready and your thinking caps on because it takes all of us together to do what is best for our children, and that is what this day is all about.