Edmonds Military Wire: Education critical to country’s strength

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Michael Schindler
Michael Schindler

In 2007, the “Nation’s Report Card,” the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), reported that 69 percent of the nation’s eighth graders scored below proficiency level in math, and 70 percent scored below proficiency level in reading.

Fortunately, our Edmonds School District doesn’t contribute to those poor statistics. Simply put, we as a community take investing in our youth as an important pillar to our future. Historically, Edmonds has partnered with of our district to ensure it has the funds and support it needs to perform its tasks.

And good thing. Our nation’s safety depends on such commitment. Education plays not only an important role in our community but also our military.

Unfortunately, many young people who want to join the military today simply don’t qualify.

A report by Mission: Readiness, which is a team of retired generals led by former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Henry Shelton, shared that “the Pentagon is reporting that 75 percent of all young adults ages 17-24 in America are unable to join the military.”
The reasons? Too many of our young men and women lack a high school diploma, are in poor physical shape, or have a criminal record.
I know. I’ve shared this information before – but here is why it is critical we all pay attention to it once again. In light of our current economy and fragile security, our community is dependent on our youth becoming assets, not liabilities. That starts with a strong education.

In the words of the Generals, “If we want to ensure that we have a strong, capable fighting force for the future, we need America’s youth to succeed academically, graduate from high school, be fit, and obey the law.”

On Tuesday, Feb.11, we all have the opportunity to support the Replacement Levy and Construction Bond measures for the Edmonds School District. I encourage you to support it.

If you want to know more about how the dollars will be used, Stewart Mhyre, Executive Director, Business & Operations for ESD will gladly answer your questions – he can be reached at MhyreS@edmonds.wednet.edu.

– By Michael Schindler

Michael Schindler, Navy veteran, and president of Edmonds-based Operation Military Family, is a guest writer for several national publications, author of the book “Operation Military Family” and “The Military Wire” blog. He is also a popular keynote and workshop speaker who reaches thousands of service members and their families every year through workshops and seminars that include “How to Battle-Ready Your Relationship” or “What Your Mother-in-Law Didn’t Tell You.” He received the 2010 Outstanding Patriotic Service Award from the Washington State Department of Veterans Affairs.

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