I am very concerned about the state of public education in America. Can our students continue to compete with students from around the world? Are we failing as a society to prepare our children for the future? Can our country stay competitive with failing inner city school systems like Washington, DC, where I live, recently ranked the worst school system in America? So here's my BIG IDEA. Parents must be held responsible for a portion of their child's education. Parents must be held accountable for their actions and inaction related to their child's overall growth and development. Teachers and school systems for years....no, decades have been asked to do more and more. Schools cannot continue to be asked to meet federal and state educational expectations and at the same time be expected to teach children about appropriate behavior, deal with poor attitudes and manners, health/wellness issues, and more. If schools are going to be expected to deal with gangs, violence, poor facilites, lack of materials, mediocre teacher pay, students not doing homework, etc., then parents should be expected to set aside structured time at home for students to complete assignments, attend PTA meetings, conferences, and classes which will help them to become better parents and advocates for their child's education. Parents would get a quarterly report card grading their performance as a parent, their attendance at school events, their effort, attitude, etc. They would be graded on all the things that schools and students are regularly graded on. And if a parent fails, and their child fails, then parents would be held as accountable as the school. Systems could come up with consequences for failing parents. Teachers are normally with a student for a year, an elementary school might work with a student for 6 years, middle school, typically 3 years, high school, usually 4 years.......parents work with their child from birth until......whenever but they should at least work with their child through high school....maybe even college. My point, parents are with their kids forever and have the greatest impact on their child's future. If we as a society and school systems start raising our expectation of a parents role in their child's education, I think we'll see children being more successful at school. I could go on and on and on but I won't. If you're interested in more details of my BIG IDEA, let me know. THANKS for reading! Joe