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'Seed Corn for Education'

May 31, 1987

While I agree with your editorial that the $700 million tax surplus should be given to our schools, money alone will not automatically get our students to study more diligently or behave in an appropriate manner.

Besides the request for more money, we should also ask the Legislature for a new law that will allow schools to expel lazy students for refusing to study.

If students want to socialize, they can do so off-campus, after school, on weekends, holidays and vacations.

Since taxpayers work for their money, students should be held accountable for achieving grade-level proficiency in basic skills, before they are promoted to the next grade.

Those who blame teachers for poor student achievement, because of boring classes, must be reminded that teachers are not trained to compete with television, radio, music tapes, rock concerts, movie theaters, dances, carnivals, circuses or Disneyland.

The prevailing philosophy that students learn only if they are entertained provides lazy students a convenient pretext to neglect their studies, wasting the precious gift of education, financed at a cost of billions of hard-earned tax dollars.

Of course, our schools need more money, but all the money in the world will not improve the quality of our students' educational achievement, unless we also modify our permissive philosophy, proclaiming school attendance a "privilege" that must be "earned" by maintaining diligent study habits and appropriate behavior.



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