Raising the bar for student achievement

Johnny Chandler

There has been a lot of talk recently about education reform and the need to improve public education in America. The buzz words have been; Race To The Top, First to the Top, The Tennessee Diploma Project, the five day News Story on Channel 4 “Education Nation,” and the movie “Waiting for Superman.”
When I started to school 55 years ago in one-room Porter School, things were a lot different than today. We did not have running water, indoor plumbing and certainly not a computer. Also, all 20 of us (grades 1-8) were taught by one teacher.
During the time I grew up, the United States was the dominant nation in the world. We were viewed as world leaders in technology, medicine, industry and education. In 2010, the United States ranked ninth in college graduates. When I received a toy during my childhood and it was labeled “Made in Japan,” I immediately thought it was an item of inferior quality. Today almost everything we purchase is made in Asia or Mexico.