I want to share a message my daughter posted on Facebook because she said it better than I could ever hope to. Her message reminds us there are no simple answers to what is happening in our society and that nothing will change until each of us is ready to change:
“Please don’t let your outrage at the fires and looting distract from the reasons why it is happening. Our country is deeply damaged. Anger has festered for decades and it is time for a change. This type of anger is not always expressed quietly and calmly. It is ugly and uncontrolled. As ugly as the racism that has led to it. We must rebuild a better America. An America that is not great AGAIN but great for everyone going forward. White people must realize that people of color are not to be feared – WE are. We have caused this and contributed to it and we must be a part of the change. Do what you can. Donate, volunteer, demonstrate. Speak out when you see something wrong. Find your own way to help. But most importantly, learn empathy and examine yourself. We can all do better.”
-Jeanne Hawkins Beaupre, Facebook, May 31, 2020
We must work to change the fundamental character of America and this can only begin with our system of education, whether public schools, parochial, or private. There is no other way.
Every child must be given the absolute best education we can provide, and this will not happen until we are willing to change how we teach them. We must not allow a single child to fail and we must never forget they can only fail when we choose to allow it.
We have the power to ensure the academic success of every one of our nation’s children.
We cannot accomplish this by teaching the same things we have always taught in the same way we have always taught them. We must change the very nature of our education process. While this may seem like an almost impossible task, you will discover it to be easier than most of you can imagine.
We must help every child learn as much as they are able at their own best pace. We must help children establish a foundation of knowledge and skills from which each can begin to create a positive future for him or herself. We must help every boy and girl choose whatever direction suits their interests and abilities. The education we provide must give them a wide menu of choices of what to do with their lives in order to find joy and meaning; must prepare them to provide for themselves and their families; and, it must enable them to participate in their own governance.
If you would like to learn how this can be accomplished, please check out The Hawkins Model© at my website at www.melhawkinsandassociates.com
As you read the model, strive to imagine what it would be like to teach and learn in such an environment, not in search of reasons why it will not or cannot work.
If you like what you read, please help me find a superintendent willing to test the model in one of his or her struggling elementary schools.
What do we have to lose? If we continue to do what we have always done, we will continue to get the same disappointing outcomes we have been getting for as long as any of us can remember.