Letter: School death spiral

To the Editors:

Educated voters were the heart

Of our republic’s system from the start.

How able are new products of our schools?

Continuing to learn? Grow up as fools?

Our Fairfield County has fields fair as Eden

With schools to get our children into Yale

But what goes on in Bridgeport up the road?

What teaching do they get who aren’t pale?

In more than half our states, one child in four

Begins each day ill fed, ill dressed, and more —

Ill housed, ill parented — then goes to school

Where teachers fight to use the golden rule.

Educators must despair in ghettos

Eighth-graders sometimes read as kindergartners

Fifteen-year-olds rank 24th in science

and 38th in math — unfit world partners.

Trump’s buying extra military hardware

Let public schools make local pleas for alms.

Though military planners uniformly

See cyberwar more powerful than bombs.

An ignorant electorate is worse

Than any other threat against our nation.

Fake news will be their only consciousness

Robots will run them off the reservation.

If knowledge brings our best hope for survival

Amidst the rivalries of nukes and spies

Then schools become our treasuries and bastions

Let’s build them up before they vaporize.
Gordon Nugent
Wilton, March 23