Letters to the Editor

Letter to President Obama about our children's education | Federal Way letters

Dear President Obama, I was so hopeful that when you took office that you would understand public education and the needs of our nation's kids.

I listened to another State of the Union speech with so much good to offer our people. Sadly, many many children in our nation's public schools were not part of your investment in the future as they should be.

When No Child Left Behind passed, as I'm sure you remember, Republicans reneged on their promise to fund the mandate. Now the Race to the Top continues this policy of withholding support from our children rather than lifting them up.

How can we — how can you — discuss a moral issue like denying children of undocumented families an education (I wholeheartedly support you on this), but not see that Race to the Top denies funds to children based on whether their state administrators have their act together? Children's education must not be treated like funding roads, for example, where the government withholds dollars based on whether states follow guidelines.

President Obama, I implore you and your team to learn more about what makes K-12 education work. This is not about a union vs. administration. This is not about aging teachers who need to be replaced.

This is about the correct teacher-student ratio. This is about giving families at home the support they need to have their child show up at school rested and fed.

In so many areas, you have hit the mark and showed amazing progress. Frankly, though, your public education policy will bankrupt our future.

Yes, I am a teacher (I teach music, which is off the public spending agenda at the moment). But I am first and foremost a father. I have a pair of boys just a bit behind your girls in age. This year in our state of Washington, they may lose so many of the educational programs that support the whole of their existence. These are two critical years in their lives.

You've seen the breakdown with the four-day week in Hawaii. Do you and your team need to see such things nationwide before you act?

I have run out of words to express the disappointment I feel on behalf of my boys and our public education system.

I would appreciate your response and hereby offer what support I can in service to your administration in rectifying and repairing these mistakes that will cripple our nation's future if we don't act now.

Sincerely and Respectfully,

Daniel Worcester, Federal Way (Worcester teaches music at Enterprise Elementary School)

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