The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) says that one-third of all fourth graders in the United States can not read at a basic level. Seriously? This just amazes me.
These are statistics we've heard over and over again, and everyone is ready to point blame at the teachers, the schools, the parents, the government, fast food companies, sports....
The red herring is always shifted, but teachers do get a lot of flack and their morale is pretty low. How would you feel if your job was constantly under attack?
According to the authors of Mission Possible; stagnation, being unable to accomplish one's job at a high level, is one of the greatest sources of low teacher morale.
Why are teachers held to a different standard than other professionals? I think the main reason is the importance of their job.
Teachers are fundamentally important to the success of our children and the success of our nation. They (along with parents) have THE pivotal role in helping develop good citizens, so everyone wants to have a say in how they perform their duties.
When things go wrong, they are quick to point fingers. Because of the many issues involved: the unions, the government's role, funding, standardized testing, parent involvement, crime, income disparity, and so many others - it's hard to make meaningful change.
Mission Possible gives a road map for academic success by sharing the tips and tools that have worked for some of the top schools in the country. As a mother of two elementary children, I love to dive into what makes a school tick and what makes it succeed. I've often wondered what a principal actually does and this book is helpful in sorting out the various roles and responsibilities.
One of my favorite takeaways is the importance of raising the bar - FOR EVERYONE. I think this is one of the key issues in improving our schools and improving our economy. You get what you expect and you get what you put in.
But you can't just throw money at the problem. This book covers what to do instead of how to spend more money.
As we've traveled through the school system, I have seen amazing teachers and ho-hum teachers and let me just say that a good teacher is worth her weight in gold. They make a huge difference. But they are only half the story. They are part of a team, that with parents, shape the future of their children.
We have been blessed to have had many amazing teachers and though my kids are only in 1st and 3rd grade, they read at 5th and 6th grade levels. Involved parents and informed teachers keep kids from falling through the cracks and motivate them to succeed. If you have a school aged child or are involved in your local school system, you'll want to take a look at Mission Possible.
And one Suburban Jungle reader will win a copy of Mission Possible! To enter the contest, leave a comment telling me your best tip for schools, teachers, and/or parents to improve academic success
This contest will end on August 2nd at 11:59 PM EST. I will select a winner at random and notify the winner by email.
*I received compensation for this post and all opinions expressed are my own.