I’ve been thinking about how to answer the question posed by the League of Woman voters to Kettering Board of Education candidates. The question reads: “What are the biggest challenges facing the Kettering School system and what plans should the board be making to address those challenges in a proactive way?”
This is a great question and, since my answer will be printed in the DDN and may be the only words from me some voters might hear, my answer should reflect my general campaign message. But, the tough part is, that according to the League rules, I need to limit my answer to 75 words. Wow. The challenge of brevity.
The deadline is a couple of weeks away, so I’ll probably go through several versions before I submit my final answer. I’m wondering if I’ve sufficiently addressed that last part of the question — “what plans should the board be making to address those challenges in a proactive way?” — but, here is what I have so far:
“Public education needs transformation. To achieve 21st century quality, we must stop simply replicating the present system. Authentic change is rare, because it is not easy. It requires leadership and strong public support. The biggest challenge for the Kettering School Board is to inspire and empower teachers and citizens to work together to define system excellence and to create a plan for long-term transformation that will result in a great future for public education in Kettering.”
I am trying to build on ideas I wrote about in this post: “What Is The Purpose, The Aim Of Public Education?” — Every School Board Candidate Should Answer”
I wrote, “A good understanding of aim / purpose is crucial in order to make valid planning about the future. It is impossible to make good judgments about the future without a guiding aim / purpose with which to evaluate those judgments. The aim for public education has become lost in the blizzard of state tests that has confused the whole question of school purpose. I write about it in this post: A Great Question: How Can We Tell If a School Is Excellent?”