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In 2009, I traveled to South Sudan with my organization PSI. While there, I visited a local school and met with a group of children who had formed a water club. The group learned about how to treat their drinking water and use proper hygiene practices, such as washing their hands before eating or after going to the bathroom.
With Michigan's economic future on the line, we can't afford to have our 500 local school districts marching in different directions. Instead, we need a high standards, mandatory curriculum to get all our students on the road to higher education and a good paying job.
There are ways we can go do a better job of educating young moms and dads about the vital role they have as the child's first teacher. I think there are ways in which we can partner with local school districts and states to do a better job to provide nutrition options at school.
At the federal level, we must help, not hinder, local school boards, parents, teachers and administrators as they make decisions about educating our children.
I completed the first three years of primary school in one year and was admitted to the local school the age of six directly into the fourth year, some two years younger than all my contemporaries.
No matter how much you like your local school teacher, he or she is a government agent.
My parents, and especially my mother, encouraged by the director of the local school which I was attending, wanted in spite of everything to send me to a National School of Arts and Crafts so that I could later become an engineer.
My dad was a labourer and my mum had exactly the same job as Noel Gallagher's mum - she was a dinner lady at our local school. Everyone comes over from Ireland and they get the same jobs.
My parents homeschooled my sister and me for many years. Why? Because the local school insisted that I, being three, should go to preschool, and my sister, being five, should go to kindergarten. The problem? You learn your alphabet in preschool, and I was already reading chapter books.
While visiting Costa Rica, I was inspired to hear that someone had donated a playground to a local school. So when I returned to L.A., one day I just called the principal of a nearby elementary school and asked what I could do. Five years later, I've helped make over nine schools, repainting, renovating, and fixing up playgrounds.
I feel that there is a decision people make to either engage in a legitimately ridiculous process to get your kid into school, or choose not to engage in that so much, and end up finding a nice local school that fits.
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