There isn't much about which The Motley Monk finds himself agreeing with the nation's First Lady. But, when she told students at Washington, DC's Bell Mulicultural High School--where 98% are eligible for free or reduced-price meals and 88% of the students are Hispanic--that overcoming doubts and adversity and that attitude and commitment count most in academic success, The Motley Monk had to applaud her.
According to CNSNews.com, here's what Mrs Obama said:
You decide how high you set your goals. You decide how hard you're
going to work for those goals. You decide how you're going to respond
when something doesn't go your way.
And here's the thing: Studies show that those kinds of skills--skills like
grit, determination, skills like optimism and resilience--those skills can
be just as important as your test scores or your grade scores--or your
grades. And so many of you already have those skills because of
everything you've already overcome in your lives.
Maybe you've had problems at home and you've had to step up, take
on extra responsibilities for your family. Maybe you come from a tough
neighborhood, and you've been surrounded by things like violence and
drugs. Maybe one of your parents has lost a job and you've had to
struggle just to make it here today.
One of the most important things you all must understand about
yourselves is that those experiences are not weaknesses. They're not
something to be ashamed of. Experiences like those can make you
stronger and more determined. They can teach you all kinds of skills
that you could never learn in a classroom--the skills that will lead you
to success anywhere in life. But first, you've got to apply those skills
toward getting an education.
That's excellent advice, no? Way to go, Michelle O!
But, sad to say, the First Lady then turned all of that positive into a complete negative, telling the students how the federal government will provide them everything they will need beyond personal attitude and commitment. She said:
We, with the help of (Education Secretary Arne Duncan) and
President and everyone in this administration, we're going to do
everything we can to help connect you to all the resources that are
available to help you on your journey--many resources that weren't
around when I was your age.
Here's two of those goodies:
- The College Navigator and College Scorecard will help students find affordable programs that fit their interests and goals. The Motley Monk asks: Aren't school guidance department personnel already paid to provide that information?
- Websites like StudentAid.gov, which will assist students apply for grants and loans as well as a year-by-year checklist to know what they should be doing to get into college or whatever program they need to get to. The Motley Monk asks: Isn't that something homeroom teachers and advisors ordinarily do as a routine part of their jobs?
In the end, it's all about hiring more unionized "specialists" in the nation's public schools which only drives up the cost of educating young people. Who needs a "navigator" or "checklists" if one possesses the personal attitude and commitment to succeed?
Even when political liberals--"statists" is what they really are--say something that's spot on and to be applauded, they just aren't capable of shutting their yaps. Instead, their ideology somehow seizes their minds, takes control of their lips, and all of that Nanny State claptrap flows forth from their mouths, like sewage into a sewer.
Try inspiring the nation's young people to greatness. Guess what? They will achieve greatness.
Let the discussion begin...
To read about the First Lady's educational event, click on the following link: