Saturday, January 21, 2012

To Milwaukee and Back....

Well, I've been away for a few days attending the Wisconsin School Boards Association (WASB) convention.  Yup, that's right, I'm a member of our local public school board and we homeschool our three youngest children.    I am so passionate about education!  I'm involved at a variety of levels and try not to judge whether you public school, private school, or homeschool your children.  Each and every child is precious and unique in God's sight, therefore, each and every child/family has different educational needs.

I listened to several speakers at the WASB convention including State Superintendent Tony Evers, WI Senator Herb Kohl, WI Governor Scott Walker, Will Richardson, and Wes Moore, author or The Other Wes Moore.  We've had some pretty radical changes in our legislature over the past year, including the end of collective bargaining, but all the speakers were upbeat and positive in their continued support for public education.

Governor Walker spoke of his Read to Lead initiative and promised funding for the program.

Will Richardson is an outspoken advocate for change in schools and classrooms in regard to using the Web and other technologies now available.  He promoted creating a love of learning in our kids rather than making them learned.  He spoke of the Kahn Academy and Newton.  He suggested that Google may be old news as new technologies and search engines like Wolfram Alpha come onto the scene.  Many of Mr. Richardson's ideas were a little out there for some, but I liked his idea of individualizing education to meet the needs of all youth and to encourage a love of learning, something like homeschooling.

Overall, it was a good convention with many opportunities to learn about the latest initiatives in education and to collaborate with colleagues from around the state.  I'm thankful for the opportunity to attend.  On the ride home, I suggested I was excited to get home, back to the country, and back into my daily routine.  Another board member laughed and said I was getting old.  But if old means stability, security, being with family, and breathing fresh dairy air, I take it as a compliment :)

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