Sunday, November 2, 2008

What we need to do NEXT Part 4

This is the fourth part of my massive essay, "What we need to do NEXT." For the previous three parts, read them below.


In the 1960’s, the average college graduate had little debt when given their diploma. Most of their education was funded through grants or the GI Bill. Now, most students graduate with a minimum of $30,000 in debt, usually more. Most of the funds spent on tuition and books come from loans. This needs to end. With credit becoming scarcer, we need to start funding our higher education. This is where fortunes are started, through education. Businesses cannot produce good products without well educated people. Government doesn’t work well without well educated people. Money spent on education is not lost, it is invested, and we need to start treating it this way, instead of treating it like it’s money thrown down a well.

We need to support our troops by giving them a free education. Honestly, how can we say that we are supporting them when in fact all of the funds they are getting for education right now are a part of their pay? We need to do more for those who would sacrifice themselves for us.

Money paid into colleges also helps our country by supporting basic research. The more basic research that is done, the more our industry benefits and the more jobs that are created.

For primary education, we need to start the reforms by paying our teachers better. The starting pay for an elementary school teacher in California is about $24,000. That’s nothing. Two teachers together aren’t making $50,000 per year. That needs to be changed dramatically. You absolutely can’t get a first-rate education from someone who can’t survive on their pay, let alone pay off their college debt. It’s scandalous.

After doing this, we need to reform our textbooks, and how they are written and chosen. History text books are written as propaganda pieces, and chosen based on how much they project the way we wish our country had been, not on actual history. That’s nuts. Let our kids know what has happened in our country, or they might make some kind of dumb mistake, like allowing a depression to happen again.

None of this is optional. If we refuse to do these reforms we have in effect decided that our country will fade away into history.

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