Friday, September 9, 2011

Want to Reform Our Country's Schools? Think Outside the Box.

It's Friday, so we want to send you into your weekend with a little bit of lighter fare.

We in the education reform movement often discuss the importance of being willing to try new things—to buck the status quo, go in a different direction, and break free of the bureaucratic and institutional barriers in place that sentence thousands of kids to suffering schools every day.

We've been doing things the same way in education for a long time, and the return on our investment is only decreasing. In order to reverse that trend—and give all of our country's children the chance they deserve to succeed—we must think outside the box.

For us, of course, that means making sure that low-income kids get the same chance that is afforded to wealthy families. A quality education in this country should be something that no child has to live without.

But we can't make that a reality by doing the same things we've been doing. While there are thousands of great public schools across the country, there are still thousands of kids who, without school choice, will never have access to hope for a better future.

School choice goes against the traditional thinking of how our country's education system is structured. It's different, and that means that for some special interests, it's scary. But what has to be more scary is the idea that we're letting low-income families suffer when we have the resources to help them towards a better opportunity. In order to save them, we can't be beholden to the status quo.

Many opponents find it hard to see, but at their core, school choice programs are grounded in principles that we understand even as kids.

In the video below, a young boy reminds us that sometimes—even when others are resigned to failure—you must think outside the box to make a change.

- American Federation for Children | Alliance for School Choice, MAG

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