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LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Culture, not funding, the problem with schools

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President Obama's early-childhood education is part of his typical feel-good agenda that will accomplish nothing. America doesn't have an education problem. Nobody stops anyone from going to school, studying for a test or doing one's homework. America has a cultural problem.

The Democratic Party's social engineering agenda has been largely responsible for creating a culture where success is ridiculed and failure is the accepted norm. Nothing illustrates that point more than the Washington, D.C., public school system.

The D.C. public school system annually spends more than $19,000 per student -- among the highest, if not the highest, per capita spending in the nation. Yet school performance in the city is consistently one of the worst in the nation. Democrats denied some children a chance at educational success by canceling the voucher program D.C. had in place. The reality is that Democrats really don't care what kind of education you get as long as it's a public school.

The failure of the family unit has made it acceptable for children to fail in school. Failure in the public school system is not an option. For millions of children, especially in the inner city, it is the only option.

Democrats have created a social system that de-emphasizes responsibility and demeans success. What America needs is the type of leader willing to effect social change that emphasizes responsibility and success. Until America changes its culture, early-childhood education will be just another taxpayer-funded baby-sitting service.

PHIL GINGERELLA

Westerly, R.I.

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