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ERIC Number: ED455076
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2000-May
Pages: 7
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: N/A
Connecting Rural School Reform and Rural Child Advocacy. Keynote Address.
Sher, Jonathan P.
In North Carolina, legislation giving health insurance to children of modest-income working families was won because a broad coalition of over 100 organizations got the attention of lawmakers. Because all children benefitted, rural children benefited, but a few groups pushing for health insurance for just rural children would not have gotten their agenda passed. When thinking beyond individual issues such as the economy, health care, or education, it can be seen that they are a means to an end. The end is what needs to be focused on, and that is the well-being of children. Recommendations for achieving that end include: (1) putting aside personal and professional egos and narrow organizational agendas and becoming deeply involved in broad, unprecedented, seemingly unlikely political coalitions; (2) redefining the goal as making the community, region, state, or province a better place in which to be a child and to raise a child, because by establishing the primacy of child well-being, the mother of all paradigm shifts will have been made, which will encompass all other individual issues; and (3) making sure that a good outcome actually is achieved, instead of simply posturing or giving a good try. The real divide in the world is not between urban and rural, it is between the powerful and the marginalized. Collectively, people have a degree of power that they cannot ever have individually or in their own little areas. Helping all children helps not only rural kids, but also rural communities and rural economies. (TD)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A