Guest Op-Ed: Education is our best investment

By Councilor Fred Capone

Providing a quality education is the best investment we can make in our youth and our collective future.  One day, some of our students might be running our city, state, and country.  Many others will be driving our economy. The penny we save today, may cost us dollars tomorrow.  Everett spends approximately $2,000.00 less per pupil per year than the state average.  Likewise, we spend less per pupil than many of our surrounding communities.  Despite this imbalance, our students thrive.  This is due in large part to the extraordinary efforts of our dedicated teachers, staff, and administrators.  Imagine what could be accomplished with better funding!

Education and good mentors transformed my life.  I want to ensure that every child has an opportunity to enhance their future. My wife and I have participated in mock interview programs, been judges at science fairs, and have given annual academic and vocational scholarships to graduating seniors for over 20 years. Through our community involvement, we have gained insight from students. Among their concerns are uncertainty about the future, what path to take, family pressures and financial insecurity.  As a parent, I have had similar conversations with my own children.

As a community, we must make a bigger financial commitment to our students so that each is allowed to reach their full potential both in and out of the classroom setting.  We must expand vocational opportunities and programs for those students interested in pursuing a career in the trades.  City Government needs to partner with the School Department to develop a robust internship program in the private and public sectors, with an emphasis on local businesses.  We need to address the overcrowding issues in our schools. There needs to be meaningful collaboration and open, effective communication between City Government and our School Department that puts our students at the forefront of every conversation and decision.  As Mayor, I will address these issues and many more.

For other areas of concern or ideas, please visit my webpage at www.fredcaponeforeverett.com.

Fred Capone is a City Councilor and a candidate for Mayor of Everett.

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