The U.S. economy is lurching towards recovery. We continue to see nearly as many disheartening indicators as we do reasons to be optimistic, but it does appear that the worst is behind us. Even if the freefall is over, though, the question of whether or not we will return to pre-crisis levels of inequality, or emerge as a nation with a robust economy that is able to create economic security and mobility for all, has yet to be answered. That question will be answered, in large part, by how recovery efforts are structured and the degree to which resources expended on recovery reach the communities that need them most. If we are truly committed to ensuring a fair and equitable recovery, and to building a foundation for future prosperity, we will make investments in education a key component of our recovery strategies.
The reasons for enhanced investment in education are myriad—economic development, global competitiveness, ending the school to prison pipeline—but, ultimately, it’s simply a matter of our responsibility to our children. There is nothing more basically human than a desire to create a life that is more secure and more fulfilling for the next generation, but we are failing. Our children are not learning the skills they need to provide for themselves, nor are they developing the tools of cultural appreciation that will make their lives rich and meaningful. If we are the first generation in U.S. history to leave our children worse off than ourselves, we will never forgive ourselves.
Read more at The Opportunity Agenda website.