Letter to the Editor — Revision

A crisis looms in education.

Previously attributing the danger to adolescent failure to accept personal responsibility, that failure must begin somewhere, and it appears closely linked to a decrease in parental involvement in their children’s education.

I teach high school in Indiana, and my school’s Parent-Teacher-Organization recently sent a letter to district parents and teachers about the dearth of volunteers for leadership roles within the organization.  I do not intend to air my district’s dirty laundry, but as a parent of children in Niles Community Schools and in preschool downtown, I am recognizing similar patterns of parents failing to take an active role in the future of their children.  When my daughter’s assistant principal reminds parents at Open House that children’s educational success is dependent upon their presence in school, and my son’s preschool director cautions parents about the dangers inherent in letting a child play violent video games after their child threatens others, I see children who won’t enter my classroom door for another decade, learning the true value of their own education through their parents.

 Averting this crisis may be as simple as participating in the lives of children, showing them your interest will help them become interested.  

One Response to “Letter to the Editor — Revision”

  1. Rick Lang Says:

    I couldn’t agree more with your last line – “Averting this crisis may be as simple as participating in the lives of children, showing them your interest will help them become interested.” I spent 8 years teaching middle and high school band, orchestra, and chorus. How much do you think it disappointed me (and ticked me off) to see 6th grade parents who were so “busy” that they would drop them off for a 45 minute concert and pick them up when it was done. I’d watch kids put everything they had into learning to play their part in a group, even kids who played or sang solos, and there was no parent there to support them. As successful as these kids were in their musical endeavors (considering the grade levels) they often suffered from major self esteem issues because they weren’t convinced that they were any good because mom and/or dad didn’t seem interested enough to support them. Those kids whose parents made an effort to come to everything their kids did were typically more confident and driven to succeed because they had the support. (My personal example – I attended a senior recital for a trombone player at West Virginia Univ. in January, who I started as a 6th grader. Mom, dad, and grandparents were there every step. His parents made sure he had every opportunity to succeed, and where by his side all the way.)

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