This week marks Teacher Appreciation Week and is a time to honor and recognize the contributions teachers make in our lives. Each teacher influences students in his or her own ways in the classroom. Every one of us was impacted by our teachers when we were growing up, and it is their dedication and hard work that inspires us to achieve our goals.
Being a teacher is a tough job, but it is also one of the most important. We all have teachers who pushed us, counseled us, or took a friend or family member under their wing to help shape our lives in a positive way. A quality education is the foundation for a strong future both individually and as a nation. All three of my daughters and I attended Jefferson County Public Schools, and each one of us has many fond memories of our teachers. We received an excellent education and were prepared for our future.
As I celebrate Teacher Appreciation Week with my wife and my sister who are both public school teachers, I think about the thousands of hard working teachers across the 7th Congressional District and how we can support their efforts. We know No Child Left Behind (NCLB) is not working to the extent it should in helping replenish our failing schools and prepare our kids to compete in the global economy. I agree with President Obama we should reshape the federal role in education to better promote responsibility, reform and results. Every student should have the opportunity to attend higher education and be career-ready, and every classroom should have a great teacher and a great principal.
The President and I both want a smarter system with meaningful reform of each state's lowest-performing schools and those with the greatest achievement gaps, while rewarding those making significant strides to help their students succeed. The President's plan will support a new effort to build the teaching profession through reforms helping states create better systems to recruit, prepare, develop, reward, advance and retain effective educators. I stand by the President in his call to action for schools to improve our education standards and to foster innovation and creativity for all American students.
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