American Education Week is Nov. 14-20

American Education Week is Nov. 14-20 American Education Week will be celebrated in South Dakota and throughout the nation the week of Nov. 14-20. The theme for this year's celebration is "Students Today … Leaders Tomorrow." Elaine Roberts, president of the South Dakota Education Association (SDEA) suggest that as communities celebrate American Education Week, they keep a second theme in mind, "South Dakota Students Deserve More."

"South Dakota students deserve more parental and community support and involvement. They deserve a school board which has a standard of hiring fully qualified teachers for every classroom. They deserve the classes today that will prepare them to be leaders tomorrow," said Roberts.

Roberts got the idea to stress "South Dakota Students Deserve More" after speaking to a high school class during a recent school visit. "The students were pleased with the quality of the programs currently available to them, but they also wanted more. More opportunities for fine arts program, more choices of foreign language, courses, and more higher level and advanced classes to challenge them and expand their knowledge. It's hard to argue with what students say they want," said Roberts.

Many parents and community leaders will visit South Dakota schools during American Education Week. " We are all affected by what takes place in our classrooms and American Education Week is a great time to visit schools," said Roberts. "During your visit, I challenge everyone to ask the question 'What can I personally contribute to make South Dakota schools better?' Be sure you include students when you ask the question."

Roberts said that the theme for American Education Week, "Students Today … Leaders Tomorrow" should remind South Dakotans to view education as a fundamental investment for the future. "Education is about giving students the tools they need to succeed in the world. It's about helping them to fulfill their potential and to develop ideas and inventions. It's about challenging students to imagine a better world. When education is viewed as an investment, it is easy to agree that South Dakota students deserve more," said Roberts.

Wednesday, Nov. 17, will be set aside as a special day to honor education support personnel, the secretaries, teacher aides, maintenance people, cafeteria workers, bus drivers, and others whose services to schools are invaluable.

Roberts said that it takes a partnership to mold the students of today into the leaders of tomorrow. "Teachers and other school employees work hard every day to educate every student, but we need parents, grandparents, business leaders, public officials, everybody, to work with us," said Roberts.

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