I am proud to recognize today as National Teacher Day during National Teacher Appreciation Week. Celebrated since 1953, National Teacher Appreciation Week presents the opportunity for communities to honor their local educators and to demonstrate appreciation for teachers' fundamental role in ensuring quality education for our children.
Today's students are tomorrow's leaders, and the quality of their education can either restrain or propel them towards achieving the American dream. That is why it is vital to ensure that teaching remains highly respected and supported as a profession, and that classrooms remain dynamic and innovative so that students are able to excel. During a time in which education, classrooms, and schools are changing, we must honor the past, present, and future commitment and dedicated work of educators who continue to better the lives of students and thus continue to better our nation's future. I want to take this opportunity on National Teacher Day and during National Teacher Appreciation Week to salute these education professionals for their continued dedication to our nation's youth.
Teachers deserve better training and support in their profession so that our nation's school system can retain these indispensable professionals. We must discourage policies that unfairly penalize educators for outcomes that are often times beyond their control and encourage policies that genuinely improve educational outcomes. As a committed advocate for quality education for all students in America, I also champion fully funding and effectively reauthorizing the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), currently known as No Child Left Behind. This well-intentioned legislation encourages innovation and challenges schools and students to raise standards and set goals necessary for our youth to excel.
If we want our children to succeed in an increasingly competitive global economy as productive members of society, we must provide them with quality schools and teachers as well as access to affordable college education. As a testament of my respect and appreciation of America's teachers, I pledge to actively work with teachers, students, parents, and school administrators, so that together, we can enrich our nation's educational system.