Moms Can Better Prepare For the Recession by Getting an Education – New Scholarship Program to Help

Our President’s scholarship for moms program is intended to help mothers who would like to continue their education. They will be able to prepare themselves for better job, with more money therefore securing their future.

With the economy being in a recession, mothers cannot pay for anything anymore much less a college education. Today there is hope for mothers; Obama’s scholarship programs will help provide money for your college education.

One way for some help is through The American Opportunity Tax Credit program. The program waives the tax of the first $4000 they get for a higher education. Mothers who already have a degree can continue their education. President Obama also raised the amount of funding for the Federal Pell Grant from $4050 to $5100. With these and other scholarships they have out there for mothers, up to $10,000 can be granted for college expenses.

If you are a mother with an education already and you want to continue but you have no time with work and family, you can choose to go to college online. Mothers can further their education this way. It provides the flexibility for mothers. They can choose to do their homework anytime nights, days or weekends, it is up to them. The opportunity will benefit them because they may be able to advance in their current position, or they may want to consider getting a degree in a different field. Either way, the opportunity is here to better your life.

If you would like to apply, be sure to do so before the deadline. Although there is a lot of money available to mothers, many mothers are taking advantage of this program and the money will eventually run out. You do not have to worry though because you can wait until next year to apply. However, mothers would like to get their education as soon as possible, because the competition gets bigger with more and more people realizing the importance of an education. To apply, a mother can go online to fill out the form. Do not wait continue your education today.

Interview With The President

Interviewer: Please answer first, Mr. President, the question in which all of America is most interested – “Were you born in the United States of parents who were natural-born citizens, as required by The U.S. Constitution?”

The President: Well, that certainly is a good question. However, the answer depends upon your definition of “born in the United States.” You see, and I want to make this perfectly clear, I believe in the Walt Disney philosophy of “…a wish is a dream your heart makes.” As a young lad in Kenya, I wished to be in the United States so, in a sense, my heart always has been here and, ipso facto, it figures the rest of me was here, too. Plus, I imagine my parents made the same wish so, therefore, we all are natural-born citizens of the United States.

Interviewer: I see. Thank you for that answer, Mr. President.

The President: Oh, and to ensure there are no misunderstandings, I have provided my birth certificate and Social Security number to the “Mainstream Media,” both of which they immediately accepted and verified.

Interviewer: But, Mr. President, aren’t there some people who are challenging these documents as forgeries.

The President: Well, again, it depends on your definition of “forgery.” Once more, applying the Walt Disney philosophy, we easily can wish that troublesome fact away.

Interviewer: Very well, Mr. President. Now then, can we focus on your background as an All-American boy growing up in the United States. What is your educational background?

The President: I’m happy to respond to this question, because my educational background, just like the rest of my entire life to date, is absolutely superb. And, by the way, you don’t use the term “boy” when referring to African Americans because it harkens back to the Jim Crow and Uncle Tom days I discussed in my wonderful ghost-written book, “Fantasies Of My Father.” Anyway, I digress. Yes, I was most fortunate, and graduated from Harvard and Columbia Universities with the highest honors and accolades possible for an African American to achieve.

Interviewer: What were some of your accomplishments at these prestigious institutions?

The President: I was president of all the class years I attended both colleges – which stands as yet another qualification for my earning the office I hold today. Additionally, I edited the Law Journals, received letters in basketball, football, and debate, and escorted the Homecoming Queen four years in a row. In fact, I married her after we graduated!

Interviewer: Why is it not a single person from either of those institutions of higher learning admits to knowing you in classes, organizations, or events, and no records or documents are available to show you attended classes, edited the law journals, or even had your class photo taken for yearbooks?

The President: I can only attribute that to my humility in wanting to maintain a low profile and not promote my good looks, superhuman accomplishments, and overall superior standing amongst everyday ordinary mortals. With this in mind, I forbade having photographs of me taken, asked my professors to destroy my academic records after I “aced” their classes, and used pseudonyms on the exquisite documents I created; cleverly signing off as “Barry Hemmingway.”

Interviewer: Moving on, Mr. President, I see another of your qualifications for the highest office in the United States Government is as a “community organizer.” How did you perform this duty?

The President: Well, first and foremost, I demonstrated my expertise at first organizing people: Which I did by age, religion, sex, size, and color. Once I had them grouped in this manner, it was an easy task to get them to work together for a common cause, or work against each other when desirable. For example, by using the Mainstream Media to play up anything that negatively impacted the minority groups – and ignore any majority group accomplishments – I was able to create strife, anger, resentment, and hostility at the neighborhood level. And, once you have the ‘hoods agitated, you have organized the community.

Interviewer: Very good, Mr. President. Now then, there are those who question your patriotism, because you do not wear a flag lapel pin, salute the flag as you should, appreciate the “The National Anthem,” or address the various veterans’ or military groups.

The President: There’s a good reason for my actions here. I am a peaceful person, and the activities you mention are associated with conflict. That’s why I received the Nobel Peace Prize! I believe the flag of the United States really should be a “patchwork quilt” of the flags of all the countries throughout the World. I mean, if we’re to be the “police force” for the World, we should show the World’s colors, for which I think the various countries around the globe would respect us. Also, our National Anthem is too focused on war. I mean, “bombs bursting in air” and “rockets red glare!” Why couldn’t it be younger in spirit; relate more to today’s youth, as opposed to the times of our Founding Fathers? I think our National Anthem should be more Hip-Hop!

Interviewer: I’m glad you brought that up, Mr. President. There also are those who say you do not appreciate The Constitution our Founding Fathers developed.

The President: Oh, I don’t dislike it…I just think it has outlived its useful purpose. After all, it was written and signed by a couple hundred people more than 200 years ago. Like the National Anthem, it’s not in tune with the times. It doesn’t address food stamps, health care, environmental pollution, the Internet, Global Warming, the plight of illegal aliens – whom I prefer to call “undocumented Democrats” – or even the high calorie and fat content of the foods fed to our children in public schools. Yes, the document needs to be updated, and if I have my way, the various courts will bring The Constitution into the 21st Century. In fact, I’m thinking of issuing an Executive Order to do that very thing, and model our document after that of France, Greece, or Italy.

Interviewer: Thank you, Mr. President, for your time and opinions. I wish you the best of luck in getting the American public to support your ideas for changing America. Do you feel you will be successful and re-elected?

The President: Insha’Allah!

Interviewer: I beg your pardon?

The President: I mean, God willing! Thank you for letting me express my goals for implementing what is required to turn this country around. If we can come together as a caliphate, or rather, country, and adopt a more social approach to assisting our global brethren – Muslims and Christians alike – this will be a much more tolerable country, and one in which my wife might be more proud.

Interviewer: Thank you, sir!

President’s Day Bingo

Washington’s Birthday, which is widely known as “Presidents’ Day”, is the name of a United States federal holiday that is celebrated on the third Monday in February. The exact date of course varies, for example the holiday fell on February 19th in 2007, and falls on February 18th in 2008.

The holiday has been marked by the federal government since 1880, and was originally a celebration of George Washington’s birthday (Washington was born on February 22nd). Over the years, the holiday has been also adopted as a state holiday by many US states, and theme of the holiday has also expanded to include other Presidents too, especially Abraham Lincoln, who was born on February 12th. In Alabama for example, the holiday is known as “Washington and Jefferson Day”, and in Massachusetts, although the holiday is known as “Washington’s Birthday”, the governor issues an annual proclamation honoring the Presidents who came from the state (John Adams, John Quincy Adams, Calvin Coolidge, and John F. Kennedy).

Most schools are closed on Presidents’ Day, and in has in fact become increasingly common for schools to close down for a whole week around the holiday as a “mid-Winter recess”. Educators also often take the opportunity to use the period around the holiday to teach student’s about the country’s Presidents, especially Washington and Lincoln.

One educational and fun activity that teachers may wish to consider as part of their Presidents’ Day activities is playing Presidents’ Day Bingo. The idea is quite simple: you play bingo with your class, as a normal game (with the teacher as caller and the students playing the game), but using bingo cards containing the names of US Presidents (or words related to Washington or Lincoln if you prefer). Don’t worry about the materials – you can print off cards like these very easily from your computer – either by downloading free Presidents’ Day bingo printables off the Internet, or by using affordable and easy-to-use bingo card creation software.

One of the nice things about bingo is that you can tinker with the game play depending on how much of an educational message you want to build into the game, and the age of your students. For example, if you want a longer game, require students to mark all the squares on the cards, rather than just a line, before claiming a “Bingo”. You can also have discussions about the various Presidents as their names are called out – one idea might be to assign each student a different President before class to study, and if that President’s name comes up during the game, that student must stand up and briefly describe that President’s career.

We Need An Education Policy, Not A Campaign

Rhetoric and policymaking are two different skills with two different aims. Though politicians need both, it can be tempting to substitute one for the other.

President Obama has never had a problem with the rhetoric. It’s what made him such an effective campaigner. Unfortunately, in playing to his strengths, Obama is inclined to continue to craft ideas that sound more like the attractive watercolor of a campaign platform than the unglamorous blueprint of real policy reform.

The new college affordability plan the president unveiled at the start of his recent Northeast bus tour is a perfect illustration of the problem.

“Higher education cannot be a luxury,” Obama said at the University of Buffalo unit of the State University of New York. “It’s an economic imperative. Every American family should be able to afford to get it.” (1)

In the transition from “what” to “how,” the stirring rhetoric gave way to fuzzy policy. The president proposed to create a ratings system for universities that would eventually tie federal financial aid dollars to the schools’ performance and value. The idea is to create an incentive for colleges and universities to limit costs without sacrificing the future success of their students.

Another component of the plan is to ease student loan burdens by expanding the existing “pay as you earn” system, allowing more borrowers to cap their monthly payments at 10 percent of their discretionary income and, in many cases, to have the balance of their loans forgiven after 20 years (10 years if the borrower is employed full-time for a public service organization).

Almost everybody wants to get college costs down, but Obama’s plan displays a flawed understanding of what is driving them up. We will not rein in costs by enabling more students to borrow more money, more cheaply. And how do you create responsible, cost-effective borrowing by telling the borrower that the less economic return she earns on the money she borrows, the less of it she has to pay back?

Making borrowing easier up front and less risky down the line will postpone the day that students and their parents finally abandon the most expensive schools as out-of-reach. When students find it easy to borrow the cost of tuition, schools can raise those costs without experiencing any substantial dip in their admission pools.

Further, you can’t put more people through school, or keep them there longer, by limiting the number of schools at which you will finance their educations. All this will do is create more competition to get into the schools that are favored by the president’s rating system. As Andrew Kelly points out at AEIdeas, the American Enterprise Institute’s blog, capacity in existing institutions is finite, and schools are already rewarded for selectivity; the more people apply, the better for the perception of the institution’s desirability. (2) These slots will become the focus of even fiercer competition if they also become the only ones offering federally subsidized aid.

What happens to everyone who can’t get into a top-tier school? How, specifically, would the top-tier schools even be determined? Campaigns don’t bother with specifics; the president hasn’t said.

The real problem is that schools are in the business of selling not a skill set, nor even an education, but a ticket – a degree from an accredited program. The academic community, with a powerful financial interest in the status quo, sets accreditation standards that determine which programs are ticket sellers. The result is unsurprising: You generally can’t go on to any sort of graduate-level education without first having paid the toll at a four-year undergraduate school. And more and more jobs require at least an undergraduate degree.

If we really want to reform education, accreditation practices have to change. The government should set standards for college-level courses just as it does for high school. We could go further. How about accrediting courses – whether traditional on-campus, high school Advanced Placement, or online – rather than entire undergraduate-level programs? Government-accredited courses, in a variety of combinations, could lead toward a government-issued degree, more or less the way high school diplomas work today. The equivalent of a high school graduation can be earned via the GED test. There is no reason not to offer the same sort of option for an undergraduate degree.

A degree that reflects a sequence of accredited courses, however the credits were earned, ought to be acceptable for admission to many if not all graduate-level programs, enforced by the federal government’s role in financing graduate education. Nobody should have to sleep in a dorm or eat in a college dining hall in order to get into a nursing program. Admission to most graduate-level programs ought to be available by testing in. It should not be a function of having paid for a certain number of undergraduate-level credits, whether outright or with loans. It certainly should not be a prerequisite that one has paid a college activity fee.

This sort of reform will not eliminate the traditional campus model, any more than public high schools and the GED eliminated private prep schools and other academies. But it could create a much cheaper, mass-scalable avenue toward an education that is appropriate for the 21st century. A host of occupations require specialized training in addition to a four-year degree – training that is not so much beyond undergraduate work as apart from it. If students and parents chose a four-year degree in this scenario, it would be a conscious form of consumption, not the only way to access specialized graduate work or entry-level white collar jobs. And a more-flexible model could educate a workforce based not on years studied or credits collected, but more precisely on subjects studied and mastered.

Education is valuable, but not everyone wants or needs to be educated in the same way, or at the same price point. Putting the choice back into students’ hands would be real education reform. It would stand the current financing model on its ear, and it would channel money, regardless of its source, far more efficiently.

It will take a whole reform program, not just a campaign, to create this sort of change. I wish I could say the president’s proposal is a start, but it isn’t. It is just another campaign speech from someone who does not seem to realize that his campaign days should be over.

Sources:

1) ABC News, “Obama Unveils New College Affordability Plan”

2) AEIdeas, “3 questions on Obama’s new higher education plan”