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Blueprint for Change: Education

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It is time to make a historic commitment to education... a real commitment that will require new resources and new reforms. We can start by investing 10 billion dollars to guarantee access to quality, affordable, early-childhood education for every child in America. Every dollar, every dollar we spend on these programs puts our children on a path to success while saving as much as 10 dollars in reduced health care costs, and crime and welfare later on. That’s what will close the achievement gap, giving every child a good start. Part of the plan also calls for fixing the broken promises of No Child Left Behind. I believe that the goals of this law were the right ones. We all want high standards, we all want a world-class education, we all want highly qualified teachers in the classroom. Making the promise to educate every child with an excellent teacher is right. Closing the achievement gap that exists in too many cities and rural areas is right. More accountability is right, higher standards are right. I’ll tell you what’s wrong with No Child Left Behind… Forcing our teachers, our principals, and our schools to accomplish all of this without the resources they need is wrong. And don’t tell us that the only way to teach a child is to spend most of the year preparing him to fill in a few bubbles on a standardized test. Lets help our teachers and our principals develop a curriculum and assessments that teach our children to become not just good test takers… we need assessments that can prove achievement by including research and scientific investigation, and problem solving that our children will need to compete in the 21st century knowledge economy. But see, I don’t just want to hold our teachers accountable. I want to hold our government accountable. I want you to hold me accountable. Accountability in Washington starts by making sure that every tax dollar spent by the department of education is being spent wisely. When I am president, programs that work will get more money. Programs that don’t work, or just create more bureaucracy, and paperwork, and administrative gridlock will get less money. When I am president we’ll fight to make sure we are once again first in the world when it comes to high school graduation rates. We are going to push our children to study harder and aim higher. to study harder and aim higher. I’ve worked with Republican Senator Jim DeMint on a bill that would challenge high school students to take college-level courses, and make sure low-income neighborhoods and rural communities have access to those courses. And I’ll make it the law of the land when I’m president. And we are also going to set a goal of increasing the number of high students taking college-level or AP courses by 50% in the coming years because I believe that when we challenge our kids to succeed they will succeed. Second thing we need to do is to make sure that we are preparing our kids for the 21st century economy by bringing our school system into the 21st century. Part of what that means is fostering the kinds of schools that will help prepare our children. Which is why I’m calling for the creation of an innovative schools fund… an innovative schools fund…this fund will invest in schools like Austin Polytechnic Institute, which is located in a part of Chicago that’s been hard hit by the decline in manufacturing in the past few decades. And thanks to a partnership with a number of companies a curriculum that prepares students for a career in engineering, and a requirement that students graduate with at least two industry certifications. Austin polytechnic is bringing hope back to the community. Giving our parents real choices about where to send their kids to school also means showing the same kind of leadership at the national level that I did in Illinois when I passed a law to double the number of public charter schools in Chicago. And that’s why as president I’ll double the funding for responsible charter schools. We also have to bring our schools into the 21st century. Because while technology has transformed just about every aspect of our lives, from the way we travel, to the way we communicate, to the way we look after our health, one the places were we fail to cease its full potential is in the classroom. We’ll finally put a college degree within reach for anyone who wants one by providing a $4,000 tax credit to any middle class student who’s willing to serve their community or their country. We have to make sure that every young person can afford to go to a public college or a university if they have the will, if they have the grades.

Video Details

Duration: 5 minutes and 9 seconds
Country: United States
Language: English
Producer: OFA
Director: New Media
Views: 9,586
Posted by: rpena on Nov 1, 2008

Barack Obama speaks about his education plan.

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