Electronic Journal of the U.S. Information Agency, Volume 2, Number 4, December 1997
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FROM THE EDITORS
The greatest challenge America faces to realizing our entire vision is the challenge of giving every child in this country a world-class education.... This means first, not only high standards, but high expectations and high levels of accountability of students, parents, schools, and teachers and communities....
If we don't do it now, how can we preserve the American Dream for people who are responsible enough to work for it?...Meeting the challenge will not be easy. There is no quick fix; there is no single proposal that will magically give all our children the education that they need and deserve.... Ultimately, the magic of education is what goes on in the class, between the teachers and the students -- hopefully, supported at home by the parents.
-- President Bill Clinton
The American system of education, like the society that shapes it, is facing myriad challenges and opportunities. What is the role of technology in the classroom? Is there a place for voucher-funded schools? Can national standards and testing be mandated for schools which are locally controlled? At a time when education is of increasing importance, where does society find the resources to fund this expanding need?
At the same time it is facing these questions, the U.S. system of education remains committed to universal access to education for all its students. It also has long contributed to its citizens' economic upward mobility and exerted a powerful democratizing influence. Despite the challenges facing American education, and the continuing debate among politicians, educators, parents and students, there is a national consensus that, as President Clinton reminds us, high quality education must be accessible to all.
U.S. Society &
USIA Electronic Journal, Vol. 2, No. 4, December 1997