Mah: Kansas can lead the world in public education

By Kansas State Board of Education Member Ann Mah

Kansas leads the world in the success of each student. That is more than a slogan. It is the vision of your State Board of Education for every Kansas child. Sound impossible? We don’t think so. It is our “moon shot” goal for Kansas. And, we have a plan to get there.

It starts with early childhood education. Too many Kansas children are unprepared to enter kindergarten. By increasing access to pre-K classes for at-risk students and all-day kindergarten for every child, the chances for success increase dramatically.

It continues with a game plan for every student. Sounds like a no-brainer, but too many students finish high school with no clue as to what comes next. Career Cruising is a tool the state board supports to help students, parents, and teachers focus on the best career options.

And after high school? We know that 71 percent of Kansas workers need some postsecondary training to meet our workforce needs, but less than 40 percent currently get that training. We can move that needle and attract good jobs to our state.

Now is not the time to pull back on public education. Without adequate funding, none of this happens for our children. Now is the time to tell your legislators that public schools matter and must be funded – not because it is easy, but because it is the right thing to do. Our children will compete with children around the world, and it is our job to help them be ready for success in life. We can do this!


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