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>Bombace: We have an antiquated system of public education


All across the state, children are heading back to school to continue their education. President Obama recently gave a speech to our youngsters urging them to stay in school, and work hard at their studies, so that they may have a bright future. Our President’s message encourages and provides hope that education and hard work are the major ingredients to success in life. I truly wish that was true. Instead, today we have an antiquated system of public education. A system that perpetuates a continuing substandard level of quality that fails to challenge the majority of students to be the best student they can be.

We, as a nation, lack a standard measure of educational success commiserate with our ideals and needs of our children. One size fits all educational standards like No Child Left Behind are misguided and are destroying the last vestiges of a once progressive public policy that propelled the United States to its status as a world power. We are living on borrowed time because we have failed to move education forward into the 21st century.

A true measure of educational success must be one that measures success of one student at a time based on their unique individual potential.
Providing every children with a high quality education can be the silver bullet to helping us deal with so many of New Jersey’s and our nation’s problems. Educational dollars are the largest expenditure of any municipality and in New Jersey; therefore, we must reevaluate how effective the allocation of these tax dollars has been. Here once again we have an antiquated standard of measure to identify appropriate spending levels. I challenge anyone to justify whether we are spending too much or not enough money on education.

I have written an educational policy paper that establishes a standard that can measure proper levels of funding by linking it to student growth potential. By establishing a real standard of educational success and a standard for educational costs we can restore parental confidence in our public school system. More than that, imagine the vast implications of getting education right and treating our students with individuality and respect. Then we can boldly move into the future with hope and confidence. Our children are national treasures; as such we must secure their future and ours by fixing the antiquated system called public education.

Mark Bombace is a former President of the Ridgewood Board of Education and a current candidate for the State Assembly in New Jersey’s 40th District. You can learn more about his education policy at

Last Updated ( Tuesday, 22 September 2009 06:33 )

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