From the Superintendent
The Philosophical Essence of Our Work in Five Phrases
1. Equal Opportunity: Our District’s PALM Philosophy: Public education ensures that every child, regardless of economic background or social status, has access to quality education. It levels the playing field and provides equal opportunities for all students to succeed, fostering social mobility and breaking the cycle of generational poverty.
2. Social Cohesion: Everyone Carries Quiet Burdens: Public education brings together students from diverse backgrounds, fostering social cohesion and promoting understanding among individuals from different cultures, races, and socioeconomic classes. It provides a platform for students to interact, collaborate, and develop empathy, preparing them to be informed and engaged citizens in a democratic society.
3. Civic Education: Our Original Purpose: Public education plays a crucial role in educating students about the rights, responsibilities, and principles of democratic citizenship. It equips them with the knowledge and skills necessary to participate actively in their communities, make informed decisions, and contribute positively to society. By teaching democratic values, critical thinking, and civil discourse, public education cultivates an informed and engaged citizenry.
4. Economic Development: One of Our Immediate Goals: A well-educated population is essential for our nation's economic growth and prosperity. Public education provides the foundation for developing a skilled workforce, driving innovation, and promoting economic competitiveness. By investing in public education, societies can build a knowledgeable and adaptable workforce capable of meeting the challenges of the ever-evolving global economy.
5. Safeguarding Democracy: Strong Hearts, Strong Bodies, Strong Minds: Public education is a bulwark against misinformation, propaganda, and extremist ideologies. It cultivates the ability to think critically, question authority, and analyze information independently. By nurturing an educated and informed citizenry, public education strengthens democratic institutions, upholds the principles of democratic governance, and protects against the erosion of civil liberties.
While public education may face challenges such as underfunding, resource disparities, and outdated curricula, these issues can and should be addressed. By investing in public education, ensuring equitable distribution of resources, supporting qualified educators, and adapting to the changing needs of students, societies can foster a strong and inclusive public education system that empowers individuals and strengthens democracy. Preston is a beautiful community that deserves the best in all aspects of town services, planning, and programming; nowhere is that more critical than its schools and children.