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Education and Leadership Are A Christian’s Concern

Leadership is something that is needed in every profession, workplace, or industry. In other words, leadership is something that we need in everything that we do. A leader leads by example especially for the younger generation. “Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity” (1 Timothy 4:12).

Unfortunately, for many youth, they are purposely being let down. Many people are unable to grasp the idea that educations and politicians and regular citizens would purposely do something to jeopardize children’s futures. This is not done because these children are not loved or cared for but rather, how these individuals think. The way(s) so many think not only holds them back from success but keeps many others back in the process.

For this article, I want to focus on education. Education is such a big part of our country and considering how the youth is our future, the education they are presented impacts our country as a whole. America invests more in education than any other country but the invest appears to be a wasted one in many major cities across our country and it has nothing to do with race or gender but mindset and approach: “A proud man is always looking down on things and people; and, of course, as long as you are looking down, you cannot see something that is above you” (C.S. Lewis).

In other words, it is about how you look at the world and conduct your behavior that determines success or failure. One of the most influential men of the last few centuries is Albert Einstein who had an interesting take on: “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” The same is true with education and the numbers do not lie as there is a great achievement gap in cities and states that do things in a conservative or liberal manner and no, this has nothing to do with politics as liberal and conservative are terms that do not have to involve politics.

“The secret is in the sauce” as the famous movie “Fried Green Tomatoes” put it. My research led me to several different studies that reached the same conclusion: “Conservative cities did (do) a much better job closing the gap in student achievement than progressive/liberal cities.” Chris Stewart, a self-described liberal, went out to search the data to find an answer and was surprised by the findings. The findings led him to put together a comprehensive report about the issue: “On average, [liberal cities] have black/white achievement gaps in math and reading that are 15 and 13 percentage points higher than in conservative cities.”

Stewart’s 2020 report “The Secret Shame” is based on real evidence and data, not emotion or political affiliation. The man is not a conservative as I am but he explain that “In many of America’s most progressive cities, hidden in the shadows of all that prosperity are too many children who will never enjoy all that their city has to offer.” This is very sad, tragic even. It is not just one group of children who are being left out but many and from all race groups and both genders. Unfortunately, this is the case in most states particularly in the bigger cities across the country. The question that has to be asked is when are those in charge going to wake up and change course?

The fun part is that numbers do not lie. My opinion or emotions may make me see something but the numbers do not change just because my feelings say something so let’s look at data. As already mentioned, there is a black/white achievement gap in liberal and conservative cities in both math (15 percent) and reading (13 percent). This is the average as some cities, it is much larger. For example, as Stewart points out, “in San Francisco, 70% of white students are proficient in math; for black students it’s 12% — a 58-point gap.” It continues on like this: “In Washington, D.C., 83% of white students scored proficient in reading compared to 23% of black students”; “In Detroit, only 4% of its eighth-graders scored proficient in math, and 7% were proficient in reading.”

Joshua Dwyer explains “Success in school is a direct link to success later in life with more steady employment, greater wages and higher self-confidence.” Dwyer is the Director of Education Reform of the Illinois Policy Institute. No city is impacted more by bad education and their failed policies than the city of Chicago. Dwyer’s report finds that a large portion of the students in Chicago public schools, more than 21,000, are being left behind. Furthermore, they are attending schools that fail to prepare them for life: “A majority of students attending the lowest 10 percent of elementary schools and high schools in Chicago don’t have basic competence in reading, science, and math.”

This list could be added to for several more pages so for time, I will not do this as I believe the point has been made. This article is not intended to be political because it’s not but to illustrate how liberal policies destroy education. They have. This is a Christian ministry so you’re probably asking why is this important to a Christian and why is this relevant for a Christian ministry? The answer to this is simple and as mentioned earlier, education works much like oil for a car: it keeps things going. Good education prepares people for the next ride or trip whereas bad education keeps them trapped Without oil in a car’s engine, it’s going to break down and we are seeing the breakdown of many once great, proud cities across America because of a breakdown in our education system.

Before someone says that it is based on someone’s skin color, Stewart is ahead of the ball: “The politically conservative Oklahoma City has even turned the tables on our typical thinking about race-based gaps.” Statistics reveal that black students in Oklahoma City even have higher high school graduation rates than white students. In terms of Christians, we must be concerned about what is not being taught to the younger generation because Satan arms his demons with the ability to speak to those who are uncertain and if people are uneducated and they have not been taught about Christ then our future looks bleak: “For wisdom [is] a defence, [and] money [is] a defence: but the excellency of knowledge [is, that] wisdom giveth life to them that have it” (Ecclesiastes 7:12).

“The way(s) so many think not only holds them back from success but keeps many others back in the process.”
-BILLY RAY PARRISH

The way(s) so many think not only holds them back from success but keeps many others back in the process.”

-BILLY RAY PARRISH

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Written by Billy Ray Parrish

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