Wake Up Call for US Education

Wake Up Call for US Education

August 16, 2005

I am on my way to Seattle tomorrow to address the NCSL (National Conference of State Legislators, 8000 state legislators from 50 states) annual meeting there on Thursday on taxes and state budgets.

I will also speak to the Republican Legislative Campaign Committee at lunch on Friday about how to promote growth in their states. I can summarize my talk in 2 words, technology, and education. We have to learn that in today’s global economy, we are competing for capital, not jobs. Human capital tops the list.

Bill Gates spoke to the group today on the subject. Here’s what he had to say:

When I compare our high schools to what I see when I’m traveling abroad, I am terrified for our workforce of tomorrow. … In 2001, India graduated almost a million more students from college than the United States did. China graduates twice as many students with bachelor’s degrees as the U.S., and they have six times as many graduates majoring in engineering. In the international competition to have the biggest and best supply of knowledge workers, America is falling behind.

This is our wake up call, folks. we may not get a second chance.


John Rutledge

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