By GARY BAUMGARTEN
Paltalk News Network
If President Obama has his way, the lyrics of the songs "School's Out" and "See You In September" may have to be revised to, "Schools Out for July" and "See You In August."
The president believes that the school year must be increased, that schools need to be open longer each day and that they should be open on weekends for activities so that children have a safe place to go.
Obama acknowledges that his suggestion isn't widely popular - not even with his own children. But he says the change must be made in order to make the United States more competitive.
I've long been an advocate of keeping schools open late so that children and even others in the community could have a safe place to go for structured activity. There are far too many latchkey children running around unsupervised in our nation's cities and towns. But budgetary concerns have made keeping schools open for non-educational activities less than appealing to school districts.
Then there's the issue of teacher contracts. This latest proposal to change the status quo in the country may run contrary to contracts - and may upset the very teacher's unions that supported him in his bid for the presidency.
It's a noble goal but one that will likely create even more opposition like that we've seen over Obama's health reform proposal.
Obama is far from an unintelligent man. Perhaps he feels that because there are no guarantees of a second term that he must push an agenda that challenges business as usual in the United States. If nothing else, he's raising awareness and sparking debate. And maybe opening minds to the possibility of the kind of change he pledged during his campaign.