I've been doing a lot of reading on the state of our public schools recently and one thing all experts agree on is this...change is upon us. And as a mom of three children in public schools (first, fourth, and tenth grades), I've seen that change first hand. When my tenth grader was in first grade, there was no such thing as Facebook, Twitter, Skype, iPads, iPhones, and the iPod was just hitting the shelves. What will life be like for my first grader when he reaches tenth?
Today, school budgets statewide are under increasing pressure while the need to support and invest in our schools is greater than ever. The national statistics are staggering...widening achievement gaps, increasing drop out rates, lagging performance in mathematics and science as compared to other countries and college preparedness scores on the decline are examples of the systemic challenges facing our state and country today. Indeed, the experts will tell you America as a whole is recognizing that our 19th century education system must be transformed to prepare our children for the lifelong learning necessary in the 21st century.
So, with the breakneck speed of change upon us and schools scrambling to keep up with the needs of today AND tomorrow, where do we go from here?
How will we raise the bar for public school education?
On October 26, from 7-9 PM at the Barrington High School auditorium (220 Lincoln Ave, Barrington), Barrington Education Foundation will be hosting RI Education Commissioner Deborah Gist for an evening of sharing and dialogue about the challenges that face public education today. In addition, Matt Williams of Cincinnati-based KnowledgeWorks, a nationally recognized thought leader in the future of education, will share key insights on the trends impacting today’s learner.
The event is open to everyone invested in our children's education... and that is all of us. Please come and take part in this informational evening as we pave the way for extraordinary public school education tomorrow. Seating is limited, so please be sure to register online at www.barringtoneducation.org.
- Maureen Johnson