I’m always hearing that “change is hard.” The way we educate our students, the way we eat, what is now acceptable to say, or even stand for. We’re told to accept change or be “canceled.” The Beatles sang about life changing “forever but not for better.”
But I would argue that not all is lost and certainly not everything in the past was wrong. There was a time when students left elementary school knowing how to multiply and subtract. They knew how to read and write. They developed face-to-face communication and social skills and entered high school prepared for the next step. Today is a much different story with students arriving at high school very far behind where they should be.
I remember when the “new Coke” came out. Many of us were wondering what was wrong with the old Coke? As a parent I was frustrated with the “new math.” Teachers told us that it wasn’t so much about getting the right answer but how the student got to the answer. Call me crazy, but I always thought it was about the correct answer. The new math has had a negative effect on the proficiency rates of an entire generation that wouldn’t be able to give you simple change at the grocery store without a calculator.
But here is what I love about change. The acceptance that mental health issues are very real and have a deep effect on all of us. The realization that the earth’s resources aren’t endless and the understanding that not everyone is born into the same opportunities in life.
Change doesn’t have to be the solution for everyone, although it seems that it’s simply not enough for people to change their own minds. Many are bent on changing others as if they were on a crusade. Waste collection is certainly an example of this. After a defeated ballot vote, after paying a consultant to find out that most residents prefer choosing their own waste hauling provider, city council just voted to fund the Sustainability Committee’s hiring of a consultant for $125,000 to once again reach out to the community to find out what waste disposal method they would prefer.
Ghandi said, “Be the change you want to see in the world.” Thank you to everyone that showed up last Saturday at the Jeffco Public Schools admin building. Despite the snow, many showed up to participate in the High School Reimagined conference. Public education is failing us and change is much needed. (See School Crossing on page XX in this issue for details.)
We are surrounded by people who roll up their sleeves and get involved in creating positive change. And while complaining and venting feels good for only so long, creating the needed change is not only effective but also productive.
As always, thanks for reading.
Contact Neighborhood Gazette Publisher Guy Nahmiach at WRGazette@gmail.com or 303-999-5789.