Having a solid early childhood education sets the foundation for a positive future. We know that tomorrow’s jobs are going to focus in four areas: science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). Doesn’t it make sense to give students the opportunity to excel in these subjects from a young age?
Currently there are nearly two and a half STEM jobs for every one unemployed person. Even through the economic downturn, these jobs have stayed in demand. Teacher shortages in areas such as math and science hinder the education of children who could go on to succeed in corresponding careers. We need to do something about this.
The education system in my district is working diligently to raise the graduation rate and standardized testing scores of our students. Our previously high dropout rate is something we weren’t satisfied with. We worked to understand the reasons behind it address them accordingly. I also want to stress that a four-year degree isn’t for everyone. We need people who are ready to take on vocational and technical opportunities as well.
One of the items on my agenda will be to expand education opportunities for all Hoosier families. The Urban Institute published a study revealing that the likelihood of not completing high school is three times greater for children in poverty than those who aren’t. Enhancing partnerships between rural schools and educational groups might give students the extra help they need to make school a positive experience. The upcoming session is a chance to make Indiana better for future generations.