Tennessee’s students will soon be competing for spots in colleges, for jobs, for placements in technical fields, and for prestigious positions in our Nation’s Armed Forces with students from across the country. We know our students can compete and succeed, but they can be better prepared. High academic standards aren’t about setting high goals simply to have laudable requirements. They aren’t about checking arbitrary boxes in education. High academic standards are about expecting more from our students, our teachers, our parents, and ourselves.
It all starts with standards that refuse to celebrate mediocrity. When we expect our students to grasp big ideas, when we expect our classrooms to be places of higher-level thinking, when we expect our schools to be beacons of wisdom and knowledge, we’ll know our students have been given the tools to be successful.