Thursday, August 7, 2008

Take Action: Believe in a child today!

So this afternoon I caught the Oprah show, and today's program left me FIRED UP! Her show highlighted the many failures of America's educational system. While many of our schools are outstanding and successful, we still have an educational crisis on our hands. This is a nationwide concern, and I have two requests of all of you. 
First, I urge everyone to commit to believing in at least one child. Many young people drop out of high school because no one believes that they are any better than that, a high school dropout. One of the individuals on the Oprah show said that she might have stuck with school if only someone had expressed their belief in her. Please, I encourage you to not only tell a child that you care about them, but prove it.
Secondly, when you set expectations for a child, set them high. By no means am I asking you to set children up for failure, but DO NOT underestimate the potential of a child. Young people often give up on themselves because no one encourages them to do any better. When we encourage children to try harder and do better, they have a reason to do so (the operative word being "encourage"). But when we allow young people to learn in unhealthy and deteriorating environments, we communicate to them that they aren't any better than a crappy school and outdated textbooks. 
Please, let's break the cycle of low expectations by not only believing in our young people, but believing that they really can be successful and positive members of society.

No comments: