We have all been called upon at various times in our lives to make a difference. Whether it is in your school, your church or your community, we all have those times when we hear the call. The question before us is how do we respond? Will we choose to turn and walk away? Will we choose to rise to the occasion, regardless of the potential consequences?
Public education in Kansas is calling on all of us today. We are seeing a careful and calculated attack on the institution that forms the cornerstone of our society. Funding, taxes, control of the process have all become the the focal point of a group set on taking education back.
Ben Franklin once said, “An investment in knowledge pays the best interest.” The system of public education in Kansas makes all other professions possible. It is a system designed to improve lives and communities, regardless of your zip code. Families in Eudora, like all communities across the state, understand the value of an education and the lifelong opportunities that an education can provide. Our families also understand that none of our children are exactly alike. Each and every one of them has unique needs and personalities that are just a part of what makes them special.
I had the opportunity to join today with some very special people who chose to answer the call to support public education in Kansas. They chose to do so not for money, or credit or popularity. Rather, they chose to answer the call for one very important reason: the children of Kansas. Over the past few years, they’ve shown many ways of answering the call. They have a vibrant advocacy community online and have spoken to groups across the state, making sure Kansans know what’s really at stake — and what some powerful people in Topeka are really doing to our schools.
And for the third year in a row, they’re taking nearly four days to walk from Johnson County to Topeka. As Game On leaders have said before, “We would walk to the ends of the earth for our children. Topeka isn’t that far.”
Regardless of where you reside in Kansas — the “Oasis of the Plains” in Colby, or Wichita, Kansas City or Eudora — our children are our most precious resource and worthy of our investment. It has been said that “Education is a passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today.”
Thank you to these dedicated parents and volunteers — and all of those who answered the call this morning to support our students.