The national events of bullying by students and the antibullying prevention efforts there is a growing awareness that students are taking responsibility for their learning and standing up for the empowerment of education.
October is National Bullying Prevention Awareness Month, education is the key and role models are needed as a guide to students. My question is; students, do you understand your position in your accountability for learning? Students have received a gift that puts them in a position to be excellent; they have a position that influences their world in a positive way with access to quality education. Despite all the criticism America still has a world class educational system. It is up to students to make the most of education despite any challenges they may face during their educational journey. Unfortunately students may not see the potential of education because of negative distractions limiting their incite to their great potential. Students you have to understand and appreciate your position for greatness and influence in society. The world is yours to make of it what you want, but you have to have an education to survive and thrive. Young men who seem to struggle the most have great men in positions that are role models to show that education and service to community can lift you up. Those positions that are role models are right in front of you, but situations and circumstances try to blind you young men, to the successes that you can achieve.
President Barack Obama, the President of the United States of America, Mayor Alvin Brown, new Mayor of Jacksonville, Florida, past Senator Tony Hill (now with Mayor Brown administration) and Kendrick Meek, past Florida House of Representatives and current United Nations Ambassador are all role models for youth, men who recognize their cultural heritage and have themselves struggled during their youth either academically or socially in some way. President Obama has stated several times that there has to be a “sense of accountability,” for youth to accept responsibility for their education. President Obama attempts to motivate and inspire not just with words, but in his actions as well. Admitting he was bullied in his youth, did not have an involved father and challenged academically, what better motivation for youth than to hear from the leader of the United States that he survived and excelled with an education.
Talking to youth especially minority youth President Obama has commented that, “giving up on your education and dropping out of school means not only giving up on your future, but it’s also giving up on your family’s future.”
These men hold these positions that open doors for young people both male and female. The importance of education can never be overlooked or downplayed. Pastor Newbill of First Timothy Baptist Church share the statement, “with Jesus Christ in me I can accomplish all things,” all things can include academics, improved reading, literacy and comprehension levels. Too many youth are poor readers not because they cannot read, but because their focus is distracted and the perception of education is skewed. Common knowledge dictates as students become better readers they become successful and when our students are successful our communities, neighborhoods and cities grow more successful. Those students that are struggling should be pushed harder towards success because they have more to lose in life. Youth need to understand that they are growing in a position to inherit their communities and are responsible and accountable for growth and prosperity. Community stakeholders, educators and local government must teach and model excellence and value for education, not accept failure from any student and hold parents accountable. If parents are weak in their parenting skills then resources should be made available to strengthen them because the stakes are too high not too. The position that youth in schools are working towards is graduation from high school. In order to be prepared for the job market, vocational school, college/university and even military service.
This academic year is new in many ways; more schools are considered Challenged, Failing, Struggling and have an Intervening status. Students need to work towards a position of excellence not settling for being labeled, type casted, and looked down upon. Parents must reinforce their children to look past current situations and circumstances by speaking life and success into their children. Parents should not fall back into the negativity of blaming teachers if their children are struggling, an inward assessment is needed to see what they are not doing and change their behaviors to help their children.
A parent can be part of the solution for their child’s success or part of the problem for their child’s challenges. Ultimately there is a cooperative effort between teachers that teach and parents that support teachers. Even though I’m addressing students, if more parents were doing what they were suppose to do there would be less of a need for the multiple programs, services and incentives to promote educational success. Parenting is a responsibility that goes beyond a sexual act in creating a child. Conception creates life in days, but the accountability and responsibility of parenting lasts a lifetime.
Students understand your position that education is a path that requires the value of learning, respecting teachers and possessing self discipline participating in the learning experience. The speaking of negativity will create negative outcomes and opportunities of failure, but speaking achievement, success and promotion brings opportunities for greater elevation in life. As students you ultimately determine your position in school and life so choose wisely.