The Summerland Advocate-Messenger - Reliable, Trustworthy Reporting, Capturing The Heartbeat Of Our Community

By Travis Rudloff

Alternative Assessment

Preparing our future generations, part two


October 31, 2019

When I submitted my column this past month, I presented the piece to one of my education professors to receive her input.

As luck had it, the dissertation she spent three years researching and writing for her doctoral program focused on the transition from high school to college. Furthermore, her research focused on college freshman not being legitimately prepared for the academic struggles college presents.

As she read through my article, she circled questions I presented in my writing that she believed I should address in my next column.

What I expected to be a short conversation ended in discussing the education system with her for over an hour and leaving her office with the only copy of her 96-Page dissertation.

As I walked out of the Brandenburg Education building, I had two goals in mind; do not lose this dissertation and identify and answer questions I posed in my previous article.

Since I have not lost the dissertation yet, I will answer questions I posed in my previous column.

Before, I mentioned that the education system is failing. The fault for this is not on one person, school, or organization. It is a combination of factors that have led to the demise of the education system in the United States. However, our towns-Clearwater, Ewing, Orchard, Page and Royal-have an opportunity to rewrite the education system.

To do this, we have to identify what is genuinely in our town's best interests. Do we want to just construct a school, or do we want to rewrite a program that has been exhausted and defeated for years?

School-as a noun-is defined as an institution for educating children. In my opinion, this definition does come close to identifying the collaboration and methodology that should be facilitated.

A school should be more than education, it should be a place of exploration, problem solving, career readiness, social interaction, life skills, etc. Also, why does school have to be an indoor experience? We are agricultural communities; the community needs to demand that programs and curriculum important to our values are present. Create outdoor classroom; provide experiences for every child to grow in not only the areas of basic core classes, but in vocational and social areas, as well.

If we are going to fix the education system, the time is now. We can build a school, but we need to build an experience that prepares learners for the future that is ahead of them. Whether moving back to the communities to farm or designing rockets for NASA, our communities need to prepare every graduate with the necessary skills to conquer every vocation.

We, as a community, have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. The vote is upon us-not only do we have the opportunity to create a more efficient school district, but we have a "from-the-ground-up" chance to reinvent school.

The education system of today is not preparing high school graduates for the future ahead of them. Now is our communities' chance to redefine what school and the education system is.

Remember, you are not just voting for or against a school. You are voting for a future-a future of education reform and revitalization.


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