For schools to succeed, leaders must get on the same page

February 25, 2010

In response to the Sun article "Raise your schools' game, Obama urges governors," (Feb. 22), high performance standards for American students must begin with politicians, school administrators, parents and teachers sharing the same vision and sense of urgency for our country and students. Too often power struggles cloud the true mission of public education, a responsibility to educate all children who enter the public school doors. This includes an increasingly diverse public school population ("Diversity flourishing across region's schools," Feb. 22) and in Baltimore County, the fastest growing school population of children living in poverty in the state.

A seismic shift and need to compete in a global economy are familiar themes to many. The articles drive home the reality that if indeed our nation is to succeed, so must our public schools. Changes and an increased accountability for school systems, teachers and students are inevitable. A former school board president once said, "If you want the same results, keep doing the same thing." The need for national standards and assessments, making sure those national standards are taught and students learn the national standards and the national standards are assessed to measure both student achievement and teacher effectiveness and accountability, will keep our nation from being left behind.

Maggie Kennedy, Phoenix

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