Letter: Learning starts at home

December 10, 2013 

Letter: Learning starts at home

American students scored below the international average in math and roughly average in reading and science, compared with other nations represented in the 2012 Program for International Student Assessment (PISA), administered last fall.

Current educational leaders have determined that problems within the American public school system will be solved through standardized curriculum and high stakes tests. In days past, American public schools were often described as institutions of learning. Sadly, today's public schools are more aptly described as test preparation centers.

I believe the key to revitalizing the American public school system is this: Parents must make education a top priority within their own homes. That means: Talk to your child. Read to your child. Take your child on a walk or to a museum on the weekend. Read the newspaper together. Check your child's backpack daily. Provide homework guidance. Volunteer at school. Create a safe, orderly home environment conducive to learning.

In other words, if large numbers of American parents and children don't genuinely value education -- all the standardized tests, pre-published curriculum, consultants, educational initiatives, teacher training workshops, bureaucratic edicts, etc. -- are just, well, spit in the wind.

ALYS MEANS, Prosser

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