116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
You can draw a straight line between a well-educated population and a successful community. 14,000 students — more than 90 percent of our school-age children — come to the ICCSD every day to be receive an excellent education. Even if you do not have children in the system, or send your children to private schools, public schools must remain our top priority.
I once asked an acquaintance why she decided not to send her children to public schools. She said, “because I want my children to have a value-based education.” Having attended Catholic schools as a child, I was familiar with the explanation. But with three children in the public schools, I now recognize the fallacy of it.
Public schools teach children to learn side by side with people of all religions, colors, abilities and identities. They teach the ethics of being a good human regardless of your background. Why is this important? Because if you do not learn with everyone, it is harder to work with everyone. Society needs adults who can work together. Because if you do not interact with everyone, it is harder to empathize with everyone. Society needs adults who understand the different values and needs of its people. Because if you do not welcome everyone, it is harder to respect everyone. Society needs adults who respect people who do not look or think like they do.
In a time of extremely divisive politics, public schools are how we protect our future. It is not hyperbole to say that without excellent public education, America will fail. As a member of the ICCSD School Board, I will continue to make public schools the best education available to the 90 percent of our children who attend them. I would appreciate your vote on Nov. 2.
Maka Pilcher Hayek is a candidate for Iowa City School Board.