Education: Best Schools in the U.S.A.
Last edited: October 12, 2008
How many people have you met who say they moved to Johnson County because of the schools? My guess is several and you may be one of them, too.
People move to places for their primary strengths. People move to Florida for the beaches, for example, or to Colorado for the mountains. For Kansas, people move here because of the schools.
I believe that the vision from which to build a blueprint for Kansas’ future centers around education. Having the strongest public school system in the nation leads directly to broader, richer economic development and will attract a steady growth of families from around the country who value investing in themselves and in our communities.
By 2020, we will be able to say “Kansas - Best Schools in the U.S.A.” and have it backed up by hard numbers to prove it. These include:
• Highest average standardized test scores (ACT/SAT, etc…)
• Highest high school graduation rate
• Highest percentage of high school graduates accepted to post-secondary schools
• Highest literacy rate in the U.S.
How do we accomplish this?
We integrate up to date technology in every single classroom in Olathe. By doing so, we reduce paper costs, increase student attentiveness, and provide our kids with the opportunity to access the wealth of great information on the internet while at school.
We allow teachers to be full time teachers rather than part-time administrators by making sure that No Child Left Behind is either fully funded or reformed. Every Congressman from Kansas should hear a unified message from Topeka: This is not working, fix it.
We utilize the abilities of e-mail and an electronic grade book to allow parents to be active in their children’s education. A quarterly grade card should not be the only information a district provides easy access to.
We also must craft bipartisan support for an overhaul of our school funding formula. We hold our legislators accountable for voting against our kids and for a partisan agenda. We never ask Johnson County residents to foot the bill for a statewide education plan and then force them to pay more when that plan doesn’t succeed. Passing the buck to our local communities only succeeds in adding to the tax burden on our already thinly stretched pocketbooks and it is time to make sure the buck stops in Topeka.
This tagline: “Kansas - Best Schools in the U.S.A.” will be on our license plates, in magazines and newspapers, and in our economic development packages we use to attract existing companies and businesses.
When you meet people while on vacation and you tell them you’re from Kansas, we want them to say, “Oh, yeah, Kansas! That’s the place with the best schools in the nation.”
Join me in my effort to make Kansas the state with the best schools in the U.S.A.!