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Jeff Dorris

Deliberations from Dorris

Jeff Dorris is the Editor of the Delta Dunklin Democrat

Editorial

Parents best educators

Saturday, September 28, 2019

Recently we have had letters to the editor submissions concerning the amount of unemployment in the area.

One insightful letter was written from the perspective of a teenager inquiring about all the young men walking around in the afternoon, out of work, with nothing to do.

Another questioned if there are indeed plenty of job opportunities here that are not being filled due to people collecting a government check instead.

These letters raise the question I have asked before.

Are we cultivating a culture of dependence and poverty?

Are we becoming a society that just wants to be taken care of?

I believe one of the cures for such societal ills begins with education, and Iím not referring to our schools.

There are 365 days in a year, or 8,760 hours.

Schools are typically in session around 180 days a year for something like seven hours a day, which include lunch and recess.

That means teachers and administrators have about 14 to 15 percent of our kidís time to school them properly.

Where are the kids the rest of the time and more importantly what are they doing?

Thatís where parenting is either the answer or the problem.

Kids that come from households where there are high expectations, where learning is a top priority, almost certainly will do well in school.

What goes on at home is crucial, and largely will determine if a kid succeeds or fails.

Much of the time, parents are pushing this task onto the teachers.

Iíve interviewed many teachers and aside from technology they all agree that the biggest change they have seen in the last few years is that they are having to teach basic social skills to their students.

Parents, if you want to see the most important educator in your childís life, look in a mirror.

There are things every kid needs.

Love, stability and security, encouragement, discipline, expectations and yes, consequences.

Failure to supply these basic needs may put a child on a dangerous path.

Again, itís not the definitive answer to this ďI want it all given to me,Ē culture, I just believe itís a good place to start.

Instill the importance of a good education, encourage and exhibit a good work ethic, and youíll see better results.

This is a fight educators canít win without good parenting partners at home.

See you out there.

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