Sunday, January 27, 2013

Public Institutions and Popular Identity

What are public schools?  If asked to define what constitutes a public school would we describe it as a public institution, or a public trust, perhaps more something to do with public assistance?  The last piece of that sentence isn't presented to be flippant or insulting, but sometime take a moment to have a discussion regarding public schools.  Begin with only the words, "Public School", and let it flow from there.  I've done this, whether in the line at the grocery store or perhaps with a friend at a local restaurant.  Eventually the conversation begins to include words such as "teachers, principals, bad, good, classes"...and so on.  Inevitably, as discussion moves to more complex ideas and words surface such as "reform, performance, traditional, bureaucracy".
Over the last two decades our society, culture and communities have changed and the demands to meet the expectations of this "Brave New World" has literally been tipped on ears end.  The knowledge, skills, and resources for a child to be successful in schools and eventual workforce has been radically altered.
This is why the awareness for the continued support for the public institution of public education needs to remain vigilant.  But with the preservation of a public institution the mandate on part of the institution (in this case public schools) demands a conscious and absolute resolve by the institution to preserve the public trust. In other words as public schools we have a duty to continuously work to earn the public's trust.  To this we need to change and change much faster and more efficiently than our current pace.
Public schools have been and must always be that "Public institution" for our nation, that ensures a level playing field for all children no matter their demographic background.  To do this, a successful paradigm shift to a 21st Century model educational model must take place.  It means providing a child with a relevant learning experience that allows him or her to be a successful citizen of this new millennium.

Next Blog:  What is the Paradigm Shift and Why is it So Essential for Your Child?

1 comment:

  1. Tim, thank you for a great post. We watched Seth Godin's TEDX talk yesterday, but no conversation ensued. I was dismayed about that, because what you are suggesting needs conversation and action in a democratic forum.