Parents, step forward

December 28, 2013 

Thanks to Katie H. Wright for a thought-provoking guest view about America's academic achievement gap. Her goal of "remediating the ills that hinder educational progress" is laudable.

Her article focused on broad themes, like society's and the media's displaced worship of entertainers and athletes, and a lack of respect for teachers. While I believe many of her ideas have merit, there is much she didn't say.

She mentioned teachers, educators, society and the media many times in her article, but the word "parent" did not appear. American laws require licenses to drive a car, cut hair, and, yes, teach. But to have children? A perverse effect of well-intentioned social programs encourages the least capable members of society to become parents.

In my opinion, the blame for 99 percent of illiteracy falls on parents. She mentions the "racial achievement gap" at the end of her article. Here's a winning combination: a parent, a child and black words on a white page. Society and the media need not be involved.

Edward Nowak


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