It’s for the kids….really. Really?

by Captain Bradley

School is almost over. Summer is coming fast I’ll bet that inevitability has very different meanings for very different kids and their parents and guardians.

Growing up in a pretty typical middle-class, 1970’s neighborhood, summer meant that the outdoors was my playground and many of us just bounced between our Murphy Hills pool, bike trails, and the coolest split-foyer and basement rancher homes around. Our parents rarely knew exactly where we were at any given moment…but we were safe and having fun somewhere. But, that was then.

Today, that utopia still exists in upscale, gated, or like communities, I’m sure. Anything less than those enclaves… well… I’m guessing that summer brings the pressure and stress from figuring out affordable care and fun for most kids of most American parents. It’s tough enough to figure out childcare when a child has strep, like we are doing today, let alone an entire summer of care when the only parent or both parents work outside of the home too (Nod to Ann Romney there) for an actual paycheck.

Then, today, the local newspaper headline screamed at me a little…”Longer school year posed”. Quite a pose, indeed. Not exactly a new idea, but still a little disconcerting. Could we really lose our kids summer? Would this be great for parents struggling with filling a summer with safe and affordable care? Is this a real, performance and results-based solution or just another stab at improving outcomes? You got me there. We recently had a local school board and the local Chamber of Commerce combine their energies, influence, and connections to support a credible and inspired vision for improving 58,000+ kids chances for future success. Our country Mayor, who has no children of his own, chose his re-election potential over any vision, even one of his own choosing (follow @JustBeCauseTwit and #MayorShinkage as this story continues), let alone that of an experienced, former #2 of Boston, MA schools who now leads our school system.

We hear worn out cliche’s everyday, since typical politicians campaign everyday for their career of re-election. It will be very refreshing someday to see “vision” , greatly improved performance, job satisfaction, and financial reward “win” for educators, which can have no other outcome than heightened career success potential from the kids AND their families of today and tomorrow! At this point, like our national debt crisis, we should be willing to try ANYTHING for the greater well-being of kids, teachers, other educators, and parents…including electing only active parents to most influential high-office. “Vision” required, please.