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Posted on 10/17/2008 10:48 AM EST
Jack Markell

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Meg Wildt
cwildt@yahoo.com
Editor:

With Jack Markell as Governor of Delaware, our state will have the opportunity to create a world-class education system that includes funding to realize this challenge, an accountability system that parents, students and teachers can understand and means to find cost savings to make school spending as effective as possible.

Mr. Markell understands that all of Delaware’s children must have the resources available they need to make school a success and knows that with our state ranking 39th in high school graduation rates there is much work to be done. He promotes positive learning throughout a child’s school life that includes after-school programs, preparing students for jobs in an increasingly high-tech market, teaching higher order thinking skills and teaching to all learning styles. And, Mr. Markell realizes this can more readily be achieved by concentrating more public education investments in the formative years.
Because I teach kindergarten to children with learning disabilities and language barriers I am voting for Jack Markell. All children deserve to arrive at their first day of kindergarten prepared to learn. Early education teachers know this is often not the case. Many five-year-olds begin school unprepared for the social and academic expectations that await them in kindergarten, now called “the new first grade.” By enhancing and expanding preschool programs, Mr. Markell can eliminate the achievement gap that widens with each academic year and address children’s poverty.

Understanding the importance of parent involvement in student success, he will offer leadership and advocacy training to families and institute school-based family liaisons to strengthen school-family ties. Mr. Markell will also make online tools and outreach programs more accessible to parents, keeping them informed of their children’s progress, reinforcing classroom learning at home. To ensure no child is forgotten, Mr. Markell will engage third parties to advocate when necessary.
He will also establish a preschool advocacy office, work to increase the amount of funding to train early education teachers and expand preschool for all three and four year olds whose families are within 200% of poverty. Mr. Markell will also offer full day kindergarten and lower student teacher ratios in elementary school.

I think Mr. Markell values education and understands the critical role it plays in the health and well being of our state and nation. He offers a comprehensive, well articulated plan for helping our children reach their highest potential.

Meg Wildt

Milton, DE

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