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Obama: U.S. 'Poised to Lead,' but More Math & Science Education 'Critical'

4 years ago
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While U.S. House Republicans celebrated passage of a dramatically slimmed down federal budget on Saturday, President Obama called for continued investment in math and science education as well as partnerships with private firms willing to help workers develop new skills.

"If we want to win the global competition for new jobs and industries, we'e got to win the global competition to educate our people," the president said in his weekly address. "We've got to have the best trained, best skilled workforce in the world. That's how we'll ensure that the next Intel, the next Google, or the next Microsoft is created in America, and hires American workers."

Obama actually recorded his remarks Friday just outside of Portland, Ore., where he toured Intel Corp. He said the pioneerng digital company is making a 10-year commitment to upgrade math and science education, in part by helping classroom teachers improve their skills.

"Companies like Intel are proving that we can compete -- that instead of just being a nation that buys what's made overseas, we can make things in America and sell them around the globe," he said. "Winning the global competition depends on the ingenuity and creativity of our private sector ... But it's also going to depend on what we do as a nation to make America the best place on earth to do business."

Obama said education remains a top priority for the federal government. In his 2012 budget, he calls for more spending on research and development, improving high-speed Internet connections and incentives for school excellence.

"These have been a few tough years for our country. And in tough times, it's' natural to question what the future holds..." he said. But "we are poised to lead in this new century -- and not just because of the good work that large companies like Intel are doing. All across America, there are innovators and entrepreneurs who are trying to start the next Intel, or just get a small business of their own off the ground."

Republicans, in their weekly talk, said Obama's new budget avoids facing up to spending controls on big ticket items, such as Social Security and Medicare. After bidding to cut nearly $61 billion from current spending, Rep. Tom Price (R-Ga.) said the GOP will focus on saving retirement and health programs "for current and future generations of Americans and on getting our debt under control and our economy growing." The House-approved 2011 budget, extending through Sept. 30, must still pass the Senate.

Watch Obama's address.

Tagged: dailyguidance

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Being a teacher, I have a unique perspective on how the state of the education system is in this country, especially in lower-economic areas, since I've taught in them. The education system is royally screwed up if you ask me. Too much money being allocated for sports and not enough to basic subjects such as Reading, Writing, Math and Science. When there's more attention paid to "Friday Night Lights" than there is to academic decathalons and educational achievements, then there is a serious problem.

Be more concerned with how your tax dollars are being spent in the classroom than they are on the football field, basketball court, or golf course! Push for better textbooks, more school supplies, more opportunities for teachers to train in areas that this country needs to excel in, like science, math, technology, and for improvements in the basics as well.

Push for educational reform, and that means letting the unions support their teachers, who are abused enough in the classroom as it is, in too many places. I speak from personal experience on this one, trust me. Teachers have so much on their plates, and so much information is out there about what a teacher's schedule is-my personal favorite is the absurd idea that we get summers off....we don't. We spend summers training and updating our education, to try and give our students the best possible education possible.

The biggest plea I can make is for the public to support those teachers who are working day in and day out to improve the lives of their students, fight for your tax dollars to be used in the best possible way. Feel free to check out my blog, and comment away...I'm also on Twitter and Facebook...let's get this country back on track and our priorities back in focus!

February 21 2011 at 10:01 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
Carol L. Newell

The difference between Asian and American education mehtods is not so much the testing, but the drilling. There, pupils still respect their teachers and are obedient to their demands. In addition, the teachers usually have the cooperation of the student's parents, and family in genaral. In the contrary to us, they have uderstood the necessity of higher education to further ther countrie's ability to stay competitive with other nations, whereas we have taken our 'superior' intellect for granted and long neglected. Now that we find our country sadly lacking, we have been attempting, in typical western fashion, to buy it back by endlessly funding and otherwise extending finances to educational institutions, without results. To succede, we must first change our and our childrens' attitudes towards the necessity of education, and re-focus on the consequences an uneducated populus will eventuslly have on our economic, and political stability. If we can not reach that goal, all the money in the world will do nothing to improve our education standards.

February 20 2011 at 3:51 PM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply

Why aren't teachers up to the task of promoting kids into the sciences and math? Why does it take the federal government pumping money into a system where it will only be misspent and mishandled by federal bureaucrats?

I say, disban the Department of Education and turn it back to the States where the people can control and oversee where the money goes and teachers can be fired for not doing their job. When the feds took control, we were told education would improve, well, like everything else the federal government takes over, it fails. Another waste of time and money and it's going to get worse.

Again, more talk, talk, talk, with nothing in the end. Everyone knows this, yet, we have to accept this?

February 20 2011 at 9:46 AM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to conservgirl8's comment

This is a simple answer. Quality math grads can make 6 figures plus working in IT. How many do you think will take a job for $40k teaching high school math to a class in which 75% don't even want to be in the classroom? And if we continue to belittle those who do teach simply for the love of it, beat them up over the meager comparative salaries we do pay them, then scream that they are abusing us all because instead of paying market rates for their talent and ability, we take care of them by paying for their health insurance and pensions, with a few less work days per year. It's all about what one is willing to trade for. So if you want more qualified math and science teachers, you have to pay them more, not pay them less!

February 20 2011 at 11:36 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

The future belongs to the youth of America, we are the best and the brightest. We are in the best universities in the world MIT, Cal Tech, Harvard etc.

February 20 2011 at 9:35 AM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to fpfp040408's comment
dc walker

....I hope your generation votes for better leaders than your predecessors.

February 21 2011 at 9:38 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

It does not take a grasp of the calculus to realize the President's policies are failing: they simply do not add up.

February 20 2011 at 9:27 AM Report abuse +6 rate up rate down Reply

They need to teach them economics. Then in years to come we will finally have someone in our government that knows something about economics.

February 20 2011 at 4:21 AM Report abuse +4 rate up rate down Reply

I wish it were true that America was poised to lead instead of just more hopey dopey fodder for another pretty Obama speech. It's going to take more than just more of his one-solution fits all spending to fix the problem.

February 20 2011 at 12:40 AM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply
my stuff

Start firing the bad teachers, and reward the good ones with a raise, and the fact they can keep their jobs. Disband the teachers unions. Throwing more money at the teachers salaries isn't going to do it. That is why we are messed up today.

February 19 2011 at 11:00 PM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply

I am a retired aerospace design engineer, artificial intellegence software designer and project manager. I got my start as a Submarine Engineman (diesel mechanic)so I came up the hard way. I learned the ropes one knot at a time .... I am saying that they would not even so much as give me an interview. -Richard

February 19 2011 at 9:50 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply

i totally agree i think it would be great if math and science were better in education my stepchild is failing these two subjects so i would like it to improve in school protocol to help students more if they do not understand.

February 19 2011 at 8:46 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

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