To The Daily Sun,
Our economy, for the most part, depends on the availability of trained and dedicated workers to fuel the fires of commerce. Today, more than ever, there must be a talented workforce, ready and able to fill vacancies and increase production in needed industries across the country. Sadly, there isn't. And this economy will stagnate and lag behind the rest of the industrial world and we will all suffer because of it.
Why are our percentile grades in essential subjects (math and science) so far behind other less affluent nations. It is because our students, especially in high school lack the motivational skills to succeed. Frankly, they don't try hard enough — and there are too many distractions that get a lot more attention and acclaim than good grades.
The unseen enemy are games and sports events that are always the biggest, loudest, and most celebrated events in the school year. We, as a people, do not have the respect and honor and recognition that classroom studies should garner. The newspapers in every city and town will daily present three pages of games and scores, and very little if nothing, of academic achievements. We are a nation enthralled in the ongoing test of sports excellence.
Consider also the fact most students know little of state government or world history. The percentile grade in math across the state is somewhere around 24 percent. Other Asian nations are boxing our ears off. They'll get the higher-paying jobs. They are smarter than we are, and we are to blame for our misplaced priorities. We are lazy and complacent, giving little concern to a problem of immense importance — to the prosperity and welfare of ourselves and our neighbors. Games are transient. Education is permanent and irreplaceable. Insist that education will always be the foremost issue in every school and games somewhere in the distant background.
Leon R. Albushies