Business of Education Should Be Business

To the Editor,

Why is it that the state can’t get its educational priorities straight, since the “kids” are our future? It’s simple. Over 100 years ago we needed men and women to fill a need in industry.

These individuals didn’t have a need to know about money, only what they were getting an hour and how to pay their bills. School districts all over the country fell prey to the philosophy “push them through school so we can be a powerful economic force.” And in the pushing there wasn’t a need to teach them that they could be more than spokes on the wheels of prosperity, but a vital force to expand that success. So the study of money, how it works and how to use it was left out.

Now we are faced with a dilemma: our money is not money anymore (backed with gold) – it’s currency floating in value on the world market. Big business has shipped thousands, if not millions, of jobs overseas, or has sold out to foreign concerns that have no interest in supporting U.S. workers.

Is there any possible answer to fixing this? Yes, there is but it will be a work in progress for several years if we start now, decades if we don’t.

We need to not just look at our current system, but at a model that would first create an atmosphere of entrepreneurship. Students who have a vested interest in their own businesses would be able to do many beneficial things, like raise the tax base, contribute to the educational system and lower crime. They would leave a legacy for their posterity to build on in instead.

Students who are taught about having their own businesses would need, even want, to know more on how to grow it through an education about what money is and how to use it. Some of these same young business owners would start to fill the empty storefronts in town. They could give back to the school district with donations, mentoring, and time to help others find the “American Dream.” These future business people would able to hire others reducing crime and welfare in our city.

And yet we struggle with outdated early 20th century concepts of money. We need to revisit the late 19th century to see that most people had farms and knew enough about money to calculate the worth of their crops. Some farmers had stores in town to highlight their specialties so that people wouldn’t have to make the trip out of town. This concept has been the backbone of the successful small business person. Why not let our future generations regain the greatness we have lost?

Jack Yeager
Candidate for Antioch Board of Education

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