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MARCH 3, 2011

The mayor gets it

Sometimes it's depressing to be a teacher. Many Americans think our job as educators is to prepare students for work, not for life. "Employability" becomes the goal, not creating self-motivated responsible citizens.

Like the recent emphasis on improving test scores, this may seem like a good idea in the short term but doesn't bode well for the future of the Republic.

Today's jobs almost certainly be different in five or ten years. If we're training workers rather than educating people, we're making a huge mistake. I was thrilled to hear Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson make this point in his State of the City address today.

The mayor is so low-key as to be nearly invisible, and he's not particularly eloquent. You have to get past appearances, listen to what he's saying, and look at what he's done. I've lived in Cleveland my whole life, and I'm happier with Frank Jackson than any of his predecessors. I wish he could stir my soul and inspire Cleveland's populace with his words, but I'll settle for his solid leadership any day.


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