Reporters, or at least the ones worth their salt, are supposed to stay unbiased, without a “rooting interest” in whatever events or issues they cover.
But as an education reporter, I like to think I’m an exception to that rule. While this doesn’t mean I can choose favorites among the schools I cover, it’s only logical that I would want all of those schools to be successful because that means the children of Middle Georgia are successful. Unlike sports, one school’s victory doesn’t automatically mean another school’s defeat, so I can openly and honestly tell you that I want all the schools I cover to do well academically.
Academic success, oddly enough, has become something of a controversial topic, though. In the world of education in 2016, that success has come to equate with test results for many people, and that brings up connotations of students being taught how to take that test instead of being taught for the sake of learning.
While those concerns are valid, I’m here to tell you that much more than that is happening in our schools. Just over the past few weeks, I’ve seen Houston County students learning about compost by actually getting out and taking part in the process. I’ve seen others learning about fractions by dividing up flower beds, actually getting their hands dirty and learning at the same time.
Here in Bibb County, the “Leader in Me” program, already in two schools, emphasizes concepts such as being proactive, resolving conflicts and prioritizing. On top of that, those students are applying what they’ve learned to better understand historical figures in their more traditional subject areas.
And across the area, school districts are looking for new and innovative ways to use the technology available, from tablet computers to classroom camera systems, to improve the learning process for our children.
As a parent, I certainly understand the concern that children aren’t actually learning for the sake of expanding their knowledge base. But what I can also tell you is that in each of the area’s school districts, there are educators who share that concern and are working hard to make sure young minds are being developed in the appropriate manner.
That’s an effort I think we can all support.