We have to do better! Our students, educators, and employers demand it. We cannot be satisfied with average performance or average support of our school system. In Maryland, Frederick County schools rank 6th out of 24, which is very good, but where do we fall short? What should we do to perform better? More important, is making sure there is a level playing field within the Frederick County schools.
In November 2017, The National Conference of State Legislatures reported, “The U.S. workforce, widely acknowledged to be the best educated a half century ago, is now among the least well-educated. At this pace, we will struggle to compete economically against even developing nations, and our children will struggle to find jobs in the global economy.”
Students first! We will support the best chance for success for every student and it starts with the right classroom size with a well-trained and motivated teacher in the front.
Teachers next! I have a bias towards educators. My grandmother taught Montessori school, my big sister is a reading specialist, and two nieces are special education teachers. I know their passion for the students and admire them. We want a school system that listens to its educators and supports their work. Real issues keep us from being more successful – teacher pay, flexibility in teaching, and losing teachers to neighboring counties are issues we have to address.
Employers too! As a business person, I know the importance of having workers ready to perform. The wide range of employment options in Frederick demands that we make sure we listen to employers when addressing education issues.
Let’s ask the experts and demand results. As a State Senator, I will create a working group to get the best results for the schools by creating a working group of students, teachers, administrators, support staff, Board of Education, County Council, businesses and residents. Whether curriculum, special education, meals, athletics, extracurricular activities, or school construction – I know we are not getting enough good ideas. I will never advocate change for the sake of change, it’s always about results.
Reward success! Build a pilot program that brings young people back to Frederick to build their professional careers, deliver needed services, and pay down crushing college debt.